Facts The Plaintiff (Global Yellow Pages Limited) is a publisher of print-edition and online telephone directories, which include the Business Listings (the "BL"), the Yellow Pages Consumer and the Yellow Pages Business (collectively, the "YP"), as well as the Internet Yellow Pages (the "Online Directory"). Meanwhile, the Defendant (Promedia Directories Pte Ltd) amasses data from third-party resources (including the Plaintiff's), and subsequently performs several tasks on such data before producing its own directories. At trial, the Plaintiff alleged that (a) the listings in its directories; (b) the whole or part of its directories; and (c) the individual seeds, i.e., fictitious listings that it had inserted into its directories to detect copying, were entitled to copyright protection. The Plaintiff also alleged that the Defendant had infringed the Plaintiff's copyright when the Defendant saved or printed entries in the Online Directory, and stored copies of the BL in a temporary database. In response, the Defendant challenged the Plaintiff's assertions of subsistence of copyright, and raised several defences to infringement, including the defence of fair dealing, should copyright be found to subsist in the Plaintiff's directories. Finally, the Defendant made a counterclaim of groundless threats of copyright infringement against the Plaintiff. The High Court adopted the "creativity" approach instead of the "sweat of the brow" approach, and decided that copyright did not subsist in the Plaintiff's directories. Additionally, even if copyright subsisted, the Defendant's actions of copying did not amount to infringement. Meanwhile, the High Court allowed the Defendant's counterclaim against the Plaintiff. The Plaintiff appealed to the Court of Appeal (the "Court"). Decision Whether copyright subsists in the Plaintiff's works The Court agreed with the High Court's preference for the "creativity" approach for several reasons. First, there should be an authorial creation for copyright to subsist in a literary work. It thus follows that any effort applied must necessarily contribute to the authorial creation of a work rather than the verification of facts. Next, the English and Australian courts themselves, which previously applied the "sweat of the brow" approach, have shifted towards applying the "creativity" approach. Additionally, while the adoption of the "sweat of the brow" approach might give rise to people's "free-riding" on the compilation efforts of others, such a concern should be addressed by a sui generis database right (which is not recognised in Singapore) rather than copyright law. Applying the "creativity" approach, the Court held that the listings within each classification of the Plaintiff's directory, as well as the selection of content, either amounted to a fact-discovery exercise or lacked creativity. Therefore, no copyright could subsist accordingly. That said, the arrangement of content in the Intellectual Property May 2017 directories showed enough creativity for thin copyright protection to subsist. Finally, copyright could not subsist in the seeds because the seeds were short literary works, and did not offer any information, instruction or pleasure. Whether the Defendant had infringed the Plaintiff's copyright The Court held that the Plaintiff could not base his infringement claim on the Defendant's temporary database because the Plaintiff had only raised the fact that its BL was copied into the temporary database at a late stage of trial. Regarding the YP listings, the Court considered that the Defendant had taken bare facts where no copyright subsisted. Therefore, despite the large extent of the taking, there was no infringement of copyright in the YP. As for the Online Directory, the Plaintiff had failed to show that the Defendant had saved or printed a substantial number of pages and had arranged them based on the Plaintiff's categories. Therefore, there was no infringement of the copyright in the Online Directory either. Whether the Defendant's conduct amounted to fair dealing The Court stated that even if it were to allow the Plaintiff to rely on the temporary database as an infringing work, the Plaintiff would have to prove that the Defendant had photocopied or scanned the entire listings in the BL. In any case, the Defendant would be able to rely on the fair dealing defence to avert civil infringement liability, in light of the factors under section 35(2) of the Copyright Act. First, the purpose of making copies of the BL was to allow the employees of the Defendant to identify listings that were absent in the Defendant's database, and to update the database accordingly. While the dealing was in a commercial context, it was to facilitate access to data, and did not concern the use of the particular arrangement of that data, which was the reason why copyright subsisted in the BL ab initio. Next, the work was mainly fact-based. Therefore, it had thin copyright protection, and any substantial taking of it should not be accorded too much weight. Additionally, the Plaintiff's potential market for its works would not be undermined by the Defendant's copying since the Defendant could have just referred to hard copies of the BL and this would not give rise to prima facie infringement. Finally, the BL was given out freely and it was therefore unnecessary for the Defendant to obtain a licence from the Plaintiff. Whether the Defendant's counterclaim was made out The Court dismissed the Defendant's counterclaim on the basis that the Plaintiff's letters to the Defendant were neither without basis nor intended to stifle the Defendant's legitimate activities. The Plaintiff had sufficient legal and factual basis in claiming for copyright infringement against the Defendant. Implications In light of this decision, it appears that the extent of copyright protection over compilations of fact, including directories, is limited. Also, to establish copyright infringement of the works, one would likely have to show that there was a whole or very substantial taking of the works. As seen, creators of such compilations are disadvantaged and may find it hard to seek recourse, given that Singapore does not recognise sui generis database rights at all. Intellectual Property May 2017 More details can be found at the link here. Innovation Fund to Promote Use of Singapore's IP Infrastructure On 10 May 2017, the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (the "IPOS") stated that a S$1 billion fund, named the Makara Innovation Fund (the "MIF"), has been established in Singapore to aid businesses in commercialising their intellectual property. Under the MIF, which is financially supported by Singaporebased private equity firm Makara Capital, around 10 to 15 Small-Medium Enterprises ("SMEs") will be injected with capital of S$30 to S$150 million over the next decade, so that they may be competitive internationally. These SMEs would have to satisfy several requirements, among which include having valid and established IP, a unique product, and robust management. Also, they would have to leverage Singapore's IP infrastructure when commercialising their IP. More details can be found at the link here. Issuance of Circular on Award of Costs and Taxation On 31 March 2017, the IPOS published a circular (HMD Circular No. 3/2017), which contains the latest information on the Registrar's award of costs and taxation in IPOS proceedings. The circular replaces Circulars 3/2011 (Part A) and 1/2015, while amalgamating the information in those circulars with new clarifications. In particular, section C of the circular comprises the updated Scale of Costs (the "SOC"), which took effect as of 31 January 2017. This SOC is accompanied by explanations to help parties when drafting a Bill of Costs and when trying to comprehend the process of a Registrar's decision-making on the quantum of costs. Meanwhile a Registrar who hears any action initiated and filed before 31 January 2017 would continue to be bound by the previous SOC. More details can be found at the link here.