FAITH wins 11-year copyright battle

The Makati Regional Trial Court has resolved an 11-year copyright battle between two education publishers after finding that substantial portions of a social science textbook produced by one of the parties were copied from another learning material. 

In a 28-page decision penned by Judge Ethel Mercado-Gutay that came out on 17 November 2020, EdCrisch International Inc. (EdCrisch) and its Singapore-based partner Alkem Company were found liable of copyright infringement after discovering that a significant portion of one of its textbooks, “Pilipinas: Isang Sulyap at Pagyakap,” was copied from “Panahon Kasaysayan at Lipunan: Kasaysayan ng Pilipinas,” published by the University Press of First Asia (UPFA).

The court ordered EdCrisch and Alkem to stop the publication, distribution and sale of “Pilipinas,” and pay UPFA Php 9.3 million in damages.

In 2009, UPFA filed a complaint against EdCrisch and Alkem after finding similarities in their history textbooks and teacher’s manuals

A side-by-side comparison found that about 90 percent of the contents in UPFA’s learning material, which was published in 2002, was copied by EdCrish and Alkem’s textbook. “Pilipinas” was published in 2006 under a procurement program of the Department of Education. The court decision marks the third major copyright case in the Philippines’ education publishing industry.

An affiliate of FAITH Colleges, the University Press of First Asia is the editorial arm of Diwa Learning Systems Inc which is one of the respected academic publishers in the country today.

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