IP Guidelines

We at Pratilipi have always strived for better and fair opportunities for writers.  We are happy to see that a lot of writers are now able to get multiple offers on projects ranging from premium programs, books, audiobooks, comics, webseries, movies, animation etc. 

But lately, we’ve also started receiving multiple reports about fraudulent companies and individuals who are signing deals with Pratilipi writers. In many such cases, they give incomplete information, make fake offers and sign agreements that include clauses and points that writers aren’t aware of and are cheated from the copyright of their stories. Hence, it is essential that whenever someone offers you a deal and wants to buy any ‘rights’ of your stories, you should be aware of what you are signing on.

In order to help Pratilipi writers make informed decisions, we have curated the following set of important questions and information the author should ask the company/person, who approaches you to acquire any ‘rights’ of your stories.

Before we move further, we would like to explain, what exactly does ‘copyright’ or ‘rights’ mean. As a writer, when you originally create a new story or any literary piece of work, you own the copyright to that story (or literary work). Whenever someone wants to use your story in any manner, they need to ask for permission from you, the copyright owner. These permissions are the ‘rights’ that you are giving them. For example, when you give the ‘right’ to make an audiobook based on your story, to a company/person, you are essentially giving them the permission to make the audiobook and use it.

Please Note: If you have published a content on Pratilipi, all the copyright are yours. If Pratilipi wants your permission on any rights, our team will contact you, sign a contract, and explain each term for best mutual trust. 

Question to ask, when someone approaches a writer to acquire the rights of his/her stories:

Regarding the company/person who wants to buy rights

Who is the entity or individual interested in buying the rights? 

Regarding the rights needed in the story

Which is the story being considered and what are the exact nature of the rights needed?

  1. Does the buyer want all available rights ? (If you give all available rights to someone, they can do use your story in any manner)

For example: All available rights include publishing rights, audio rights, ebook publishing rights, Video production rights, Comic rights etc.

  1. Does the buyer want some partial rights to convert into some specific formats? (If you give some specific right to someone, they can only use your story in a specific manner)

For example: Do buyers want only audio rights to that story? Then they can not publish it as a book. Same way you should be aware of which partial rights you are giving.

  1. Does the buyer need rights to use the story in the current literary format itself for distribution?

For example: Let's say you have published that story as an ebook. So buyers need rights to use that story in the same format and distribute it in other channels?

  1. Is it an exclusive arrangement? Can the same rights be given to anyone else, as well?

Exclusive arrangement means that once you have given rights (all available rights or partial rights) to the buyer. You can not give the same rights to another buyer.

For example: If you have given exclusive rights of story for audio to ‘XYZ’ company . You can not give audio rights of the same story to ‘ABC’ company. 

  1. After an agreement is signed for giving rights, who will own the copyright of the story (base story). Also, who will own the copyright of the content produced using the rights?

For example: You have given film production rights of your novel to the buyer? Then will you own the copyright of the ‘base story’ (in this case your novel)? or will they own the ‘base story’? Same for the film’s rights which is based on your novel, will you own the rights for that film or the buyer?  

  1. What is the term (duration) for which rights are to be given and how long will the content produced in another format be used?

For example: You gave rights to make a video advertisement from your story. Or you were given the rights to publish your story as a physical book. Then for how long can they use that advertisement or can they print that book?

Regarding creation of future works based on the story

  1. If any addition or editing is made to the story after signing the contract, what will happen to the updated story’s rights?

For example: Your story was based in the 14th century era with kings and queens. Now the buyer modified it and changed the time era to today's words and added some character. So who will hold that updated story’s right? 

  1. If a prequel, sequel or any character spin-off story, connected to the base story is created, what will happen to the rights of these new related works?

Regarding a writer’s other stories

  1. Will this deal affect the usage of any of my other stories, in any possible way?

Regarding monetary benefits and title credits

  1. What is the payment structure? 

  2. How is the revenue share calculated? 

  3. When and how will the revenue share and upfront payment be paid? 

  4. Will there be an adjustment of the upfront payment, against the revenue share payments?

  5. How will title credits in any content produced using the rights of the story be given to the writer? 

Regarding contractual arrangement 

  1. If the story is used in a way that is not permitted or if payment is not received in time,  what remedies does the writer have?


With sharing these questions, our intent is to educate and enable writers to have a conversation with anyone, regarding the rights of your stories. We hope it helps the writers to be more aware about the deals and agreements they are signing on. Ask questions and ensure you get clear answers to all of these questions before signing any agreements. It is our mutual interest to secure all the hard work and imagination put into your story.

If you still have any doubts or queries, feel free to reach us out at english@pratilipi.com.
For any further assistance, follow Pratilipi Official Profile for more such information.

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