The lawyer of Tito Sotto, Vic Sotto, and Joey de Leon, Atty. Buko dela Cruz of DivinaLaw explained the difference between copyright and trademark amid the complaint they had filed against Television and Production Exponents (TAPE) Inc.
After the first hearing of the copyright infringement case, they filed before the Marikina Regional Trial Court on July 27, Atty. Dela Cruz explained that Eat Bulaga’s copyright, which they claimed belonged to De Leon, was not required to be registered.
Dela Cruz said that the owner of the copyright was the one who created it and it was effective for 50 years even after the possessor already passed away.
“Kung sino ang gumawa, siya ang may karapatan,” the lawyer said. “So dapat wag mong kunin kung hindi ikaw ang gumawa,”
According to him, Eat Bulaga was existing already since 1979 even before the creation of TAPE Inc in 1981.
While TAPE was the registree of the trademark, Atty. Dela Cruz said that the owner of the copyright, allegedly Joey de Leon, was more powerful when it comes to the decision-making related to the brand.
He added that the trademark was required to be registered because of its business-related purposes.
“Mas malawak ang copyright, ang trademark limitado.. Yung copyright hanggang mamatay ka plus 50 years sayo ‘yun at hindi mo kailangan magparehistro, basta ikaw ang lumikha,” he explained.
“‘Yung trademark, ginagamit mo sa negosyo so kailangan mong i-register ‘yung trademark para walang ibang makagamit sa produkto, sa merchandise. Pero ‘yung copyright sa isang nilikha mo, ikaw lang ang may kapangyarihan magpagamit non at kung gagamitin ng iba ay dapat i-acknowledge ka man lang,” he added.
He also said that the court may already decide on the case around September.
It can be recalled that TVJ wanted TAPE to stop using Eat Bulaga’s title, its theme song, and its popular segments.
TAPE reportedly decided to change their theme song as response to the complaint they were facing.