The Instagram page Humans of Bombay, a popular storytelling online platform filed a lawsuit against the people of India (POI), a platform sharing the same niche as HOB over copyright issues. They have stated that the platform has copied its intellectual property and ideas and that they have tried to address the issue amicably with the POI members before approaching the court.
Why did the HOB sue POI?
The HOB storytelling platform accused the POI of replicating its unique storytelling format and publishing identical content. It claimed that the latter platform has even used the same images and videos of the HOB page without its permission.
On September 18, the Delhi High Court issued a notice to the people of India based on a plea moved by the humans Of Bombay, seeking to restrain the former platform from appropriating the HOB’s “unique form of storytelling and publishing” of content. A single-judge bench of Justice Prathiba Singh issued a notice to the defendant, “POI Social Media Private Ltd”, in Humans of Bombay Stories Private Ltd’s application for interim relief while observing that on October 11the HC will hear the application.
The situation escalated after…
The issue became controversial after the founder of Humans of New York (HONY), Brandon Stanton took to the site X, formerly Twitter conveying his disappointment over the turn of events, and caught the attention of several social media users. He said that the HOB should not be suing someone for monetization when they did the same thing by copying his ideas. He stated “You can’t be suing people for what I’ve forgiven you for,” and urged them to drop the lawsuit.
Speaking on the issue the HOB tweeted that Brandon should not have been jumping to conclusions and “ought to have equipped himself” with the situation. “It’s therefore shocking that a cryptic assault on our efforts to protect our intellectual property is made in this manner, especially without understanding the background of the case,” they said that they are all for the power of storytelling and it should be done honestly and ethically and believe in the Justice system of India to pass out judgment.
What is the HOB platform about?
The Humans of Bombay page was first started by Karishma Mehta, as a simple Facebook Page that had taken inspiration from the Humans Of New York and began its Facebook page in 2014. It began its journey by interviewing random people about their journey and taking their pictures and now hosts a community of 3.2 million subscribers on Instagram. The platform is one of the largest storytelling platforms in India that talks about inspirational and relatable stories of people who have broken glass ceilings from all walks of life.
How did HONY start?
Brandon Stanton started developed the idea as a photography project in 2010 with the goal of photographing 10,000 New Yorkers on the street and creating an exhaustive catalog of them. It started to evolve into something big as he began interviewing his subjects in addition to photographing them and he would include quotes and short stories from their lives. Taken together, these portraits and captions became the subject of a vibrant blog. The HONY now has over 20 million followers on social media.