what happened to the lyrics of kal ho na ho, lagaan, kuch kuch hota hai, kabhi khushi kabhie gham, and dum?

      So, BollyWHAT? bets you believe that piracy is the biggest threat to Bollywood's profits. Think again, O innocent!  SONY Music Entertainment (India) Pvt. Ltd. has decided to crack down on the real culprits: those of us who share film lyrics from movies whose soundtracks Sony distributes. That's right: the company sent an e-mail to BollyWHAT? on October 6, 2003 demanding that the lyrics of KAL HO NA HO be removed from the site. These lyrics are copyrighted, and apparently making said lyrics intelligible to people who don't speak Hindi was inflicting "damage" on Sony and accruing unlawful "gain" to BollyWHAT?.

     So.  We decided to remove the lyrics of all albums that are released by Sony, because we're not out to "damage" anyone here. Actually, we're not even out to "gain."  Our only intention is to make the cinema we love just a little more accessible to folks who, confused by aspects of Hindi cinema they don't understand, might otherwise give up on it and go back to Hollywood. In other words, this site yields no profits. The only "gain" we receive comes in the form of your awesome e-mails and your contributions to BollyWHAT?'s rather lively forum, both of which continue to brighten our day and make this site worth maintaining.  

    Oftentimes, we diehard fans of Hindi popular cinema wonder why Bollywood hasn't yet hit the big time in the West. We speculate about when the Hindi-language Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon will finally take local screens by storm. This move on Sony's part doesn't bode well for that prospect, for one simple reason: songs are a big part of Hindi films. If people don't like the songs, they probably won't like the movies. And...take that final leap of logic with us...lots of people don't like songs whose meanings they don't understand. It's always more fun to sing along to words the meaning of which you actually know, right? But when it comes to songs released by Sony Music, you'll have to make do with old-fashioned guesswork, because from now on, we won't be translating any more of them.


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