There are three remedies available that can be claimed by a plaintiff in an action for copyright infringement and they are firstly, Damages which refers to monetary compensation to the copyright owner for the losses suffered or Account of profits which refers to taking away any profit that the copyright infringer may have made from the infringement and giving it to the copyright owner. Secondly, an Injunction which is an order by the court to prevent the offender from continuing with or commencing an infringing act by showing that damages would not be adequate. Lastly, Order for Delivery up to Plaintiff which is an order from the court to the infringer to surrender all infringing items to the copyright owner so that the infringing items may be destroyed.
In the case PropertyGuru Pte Ltd v 99 Pte Ltd, the court found that the plaintiff is not the author of the original photographs. It had taken those works and altered them such that they became the watermarked photographs. Furthermore, alterations made to the original photographs such as resizing, tweaking the light balance and softening the edges did not result in images substantially different from the original photographs
taken. In addition, the addition of the watermark did not make the altered image an original work as it merely supplied information to the viewer of the photograph to identify a photograph as one which has been posted on the PG website. As such the plaintiff’s claim for copyright infringement was dismissed by the judge.
However, assuming that the Defendant had been found liable, the remedies available for claim by the plaintiff are firstly Damages or Accounts of Profit. It can be assumed that in seeking to make their property marketable for sale or rent, the users would take their photographs carefully, and pay attention to the lighting and angling of their photographs, thus demonstrating a degree of skill and judgment which qualifies the works for copyright protection. In the event where damages would not be adequate, an injunction could arise in which the court could order the defendant to stop using the plaintiff’s photographs without permission. This would protect the plaintiff against further losses and safeguard its business.