Posted in IP Law

PAYING A PRICE?: Analyzing the claims made by PayPal against Paytm in reference to trademark infringement

Ever since demonetization, the online payments system known as PayTM has become a regular sight- ‘PayTM accepted here’– from your inviting, plush showrooms to your roadside ‘nukkad chaiwallah’. As PayTM CEO quoted that the online payments system was close to 2 billion transactions for the annum[1], all is not so swell in the paradise of numbers- as of November 18, 2016, PayPal, the global renowned payments system, has filed a notice of opposition to PayTM’s application to register its trademark under class 36.[2] This opposition was filed on the last day of the deadline and it is opined that this is a competitive move on part of PayPal in light of the momentum of the growth of PayTM due to government support for cashless transactions and cash crunches.

It has been put forth by PayPal that they are the registered proprietors of the earlier trade mark with registrations having being renewed from time to time such that they are valid and subsisting and PayPal has exclusive rights to the use of such earlier trademark and its affirmatives. They have further put forth that since 2007, PayPal has used a distinctive two-colour scheme with a dark blue for the former syllable and a lighter shade of blue for the latter syllable. They have argued that given their global reputation and use, they are a well known trademark and are well known by the public due to their promotions and advertisements due to which they should be granted enhanced protection as per the Trade Marks Act, 1999. This, they contend, has led to reputation and goodwill of a nature that leads to the public associating their trademark with PayPal exclusively. Further, it has been put forth by PayPal that the trademark sought by PayTM is deceptively and confusingly similar to that of PayPal due to the above reasons as well as the repetition of ‘Pay’ as the first syllable in their brands, which they contest, the public is likelier to recollect.

Not only the above, but it has also been put forth by PayPal that the singular intention of PayTM while filing and seeking rights over such a mark stem from their intention to take advantage of the reputation built up by PayPal in the market of online payments and to ride upon the goodwill of the Opponent in this regard. They state that such use of a mark might cause confusion in the minds of the public and lead them to believe that the two systems in question are related to each other or affiliated when such is not the case and this association shall impact the brand value or the association of equity with the brand of PayPal. In this post, we shall attempt to evaluate whether such claims and further possible claims that may be made when the case ensues, shall hold ground in light of the established law.

The first claim we evaluate is whether PayPal can claim exclusivity with regards to the word ‘Pay’ and in my opinion, it is a generic word and the position of law is settled as such that generic words cannot be claimed exclusive rights over. In the case of J.R Kapoor v. Micronix India, it was held by the Hon’ble Supreme Court that the term ‘micro’ was one which could not be claimed monopoly over as it was a word which was descriptive of products made from a particular technology and the word was a common one in the English language.[3] It was further held in the case of Kaviraj Pandit Durga Dutt Sharma v. Navaratna Pharmaceutical Laboratories, that in the Ayurveda market, the term Navratna was a common one and no exclusivity could be provided over it.[4] Further, in the recent decision in People Interactive (I) Pvt.Ltd v. Vivek Pahwa of the Bombay High Court, it was held that the word ‘shaadi’ was a common word in India which was used to refer to marriages and would be commonly used for online portal services and could not be claimed a monopoly over.[5] Applying the same in this case, ‘pay’ being a generic word, which is descriptive and common in the online payments system, would make it a difficult claim to rule in favour of PayPal.

We now evaluate whether the colour combination of the ‘blues’ can be claimed exclusivity over by PayPal. While the Indian Trademark registry had rejected Cadbury’s attempt to monopolize the purple colour of their packaging due to lack of distinctiveness, with regards to a combination of colours, the law is slightly different. In the decision by the Delhi High Court in Deere & Co. & Anr. v. S. Harcharan Singh & Anr, it was held that trademark protection could be extended to the distinctive green and yellow colour combination by Deere in regards to tractors and that the defendant’s use of the same was deceptive in nature as the usage of the colours on specific parts of the tractors was identical.[6] While the exact nature of the objections is not outlined, with this precedent, if the facts fall similar, PayPal may have a claim in such regard for trademark protection.

We also need to consider whether PayPal has acquired reputation and goodwill of a nature which can allow it to be considered a well known trademark which should receive enhanced protection under the Act. There is enough evidence to showcase that PayPal is a leading global payments system in the online domain which has immense transborder reputation, being internationally available at several countries as a mode of payment. In the case of N.R Dongre v. Whirlpool Corporation, the principle of transborder reputation to allow foreign owners to protect rights over trademarks was recognized by the Supreme Court of India.[7] Not only this, but the Delhi High Court has also recognized that a strong presence of an online nature is a strong indicator of such reputation.[8] Further, while these claims need to be assessed and evaluated by the court, the argument of prior user has also been extended by PayPal such that they had an international presence from 2007 onwards and were dealing with Indian customers from 2000 onwards. On these grounds, it would appear that PayPal, on the basis of these claims may be able to bring about a suit for passing off but to what extent they shall reap what they seek is on the basis of several evaluations by the court.

PayTM, in India, has attained goodwill and reputation, especially with the economic circumstances at present, of such a nature that not only has its valuation and consumer base expanded, but it has also created for itself a niche in the minds of individuals such that scope for likelihood of confusion is low due to its recognition. However, while the above is one such view, we also have to counter it with the flipside, that as more and more customers begin to provide a secondary meaning to PayTM and use it as a verb and not a noun, it leads to the possibility of the term becoming associated with a particular activity and losing exclusivity such as in the cases of Zippers, Aspirin, Yo-Yo etc. In the decision of Schering Corporation and Ors.
v. Getwell Life Sciences India Pvt. Ltd
,[9] it was held that the name of an organ, ailment or ingredient, was publici juris such as ‘Temo’ which could not be claimed exclusivity over. This is also a consideration which needs to be taken into account as a flipside to the lack of likelihood of confusion as leading to acquiring such meaning that it becomes publici juris.

Lastly, we consider whether there stands an argument of concurrent use on the part of PayTM and whether PayPal has been ‘sitting on trademark rights’. Honest concurrent use is entailed under S. 12 of the Trademark Act. However, honest and concurrent use requires that there is prima facie evidence while filing for the trademark that there is no user of an identical or similar nature, since there is no way of conclusively determining the same. In light of the reputation acquired by PayPal, it is difficult to consider this argument in favour of PayTM for honest concurrent use. Further, while it may be put forth that PayPal has only objected or opposed PayTM now, while the application had been made in 2012, the counter that can be put forth is that the publication of the application was made only in 2016 in the Trademark journal, post which in November, PayPal filed the opposition, albeit on the last day. On both these grounds, it would appear that the stand of PayTM is weaker than that of PayPal, however, all that can be done now is wait- for the war of the ‘pay’ systems to end and for either one of the two systems to pay a price.



[3] J.R Kapoor v. Micronix India, 1994 Supp (3) SCC 215.

[4] Kaviraj Pandit Durga Dutt Sharma v. Navaratna Pharmaceutical Laboratories, 1965 AIR 980.

[5] People Interactive (I) Pvt.Ltd v. Vivek Pahwa, Suit No. 846 of 2015.

[6] Deere & Co. & Anr. vs S. Harcharan Singh & Anr , CS(OS) No. 3760/2014.

[7] N.R Dongre v. Whirlpool Corporation, 1996 PTC (16) 583.

[8] Cadbury UK Limited & Anr v. Lotted India Corporation Ltd, 2014 (57) PTC 422 (Delhi).

[9] Schering Corporation and Ors.v. Getwell Life Sciences India Pvt. Ltd, IA No. 2226/2007 in CS (OS) 361/2007.




Currently pursuing her undergraduate degree from the Gujarat National Law University, Gandhinagar, Sanskriti Sanghi possesses a flair for writing and a yearn to learn. Being avidly interested in Antitrust law, Intellectual Property Rights, Children’s Rights and International Relations, she seeks to engage in and discuss multiple disciplines which keep her constantly discovering. She believes in immersing and involving herself in various activities and letting the passion for each of those interests allow her to deliver her best.

Posted in Copyright, IP Law

Why Copyright Laws Vary

Whenever you write a song or a story, draw a picture, or create anything else and put it down on paper, build it, or play it, you automatically own the copyright to it, including literary, intellectual, musical, and other forms of art, software, films, photos, and more. The list of what is protected by copyright does vary from country to country, so if you are curious, check with your government’s copyright office.

Copyright gives you the ability to determine just what happens to that piece of work. Whether you want to distribute it, copy it, print it, sell it, or do anything else to it – including give the rights to it to someone else – you can, because it belongs to you for, usually, as long as you live, plus 70 years. That is why some works eventually, if the copyright is not transferred to someone else, are considered to be in the “public domain.”

“Congress shall have the Power . . . To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.” – United States Constitution, Art. I, Section 8


In 1790, according to the United States Copyright Office, the constitution guaranteed that if a person created something, they held the rights to it, originally for 14 years. This was extended to 28 years in 1831. However, while an author, for example, can prevent others from using their exact words, they cannot prevent others from using an “idea, procedure, process, slogan, principle, or discovery.” As time went on, different provisions and time limits expanded the copyright laws.

In 1909, President Theodore Roosevelt signed the Copyright Act of 1909. This act “granted protection to works published with a valid copyright notice affixed on copies. Accordingly, unpublished works were protected by state copyright law but published works without proper notice fell into the public domain.

The copyright term remained at 28 years with a renewal term of 28 years, but the author was granted the right to terminate any transfer of his copyright between the initial and renewal term.” This act also allowed for the reproduction of music and added a provision for motion pictures in 1912 which, until that time, had to be registered as a series of photos.

Of course, as the world and its technology have changed, so copyright law has had to change. In 1998, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act limited online infringement liability for online service providers.

Up until 1989, works had to have a valid copyright notice on them in order to be protected. However, works that are published after March 1, 1989 do not need to have a valid copyright notice in order to be protected, but it’s still advisable to have one. If a work has a notice on it, a person who has infringed, cannot claim that they didn’t know.

Copyright in Practice

What does a copyright notice look like? If you have written a blog, for example, in the footer, you should say Copyright © 2006 and your name or the owner of the published works. If you have created something, whether it’s an app or a novel, you should register the copyright. If your novel is being published by a publisher, they will likely do this for you, but you should check to be sure. Registering a copyright is easy. You need to fill out the proper forms, which are available at or by calling the U.S. Copyright Office at 202-707-9100. It currently costs $45 to register a work. You can register a group of works together and save money if need be.

So just how do you know when to register a copyright, and why should you care? Copyright law is important for even the small creations you make. What if you make a logo or poster for your business or team? Perhaps you spent a lot of time on it and are really proud of your design. What if, after unveiling this amazing design, another team or business decided to “borrow” your logo and use it for their t-shirts?

Not only would this be upsetting to you, but wouldn’t you feel as though you should be compensated or at least credited for the time and effort you put into the logo, especially if someone else is going to use it? Of course. And without copyright law, you wouldn’t necessarily be entitled to that compensation or credit.

On the other hand, some works are available to be used by the public at large because the copyright has expired. This is called being in the “public domain.” According to Stanford University, “All works published in the United States before 1923 are in the public domain.”
This includes:

  • “Works published after 1922, but before 1978 are protected for 95 years from the date of publication. If the work was created, but not published, before 1978, the copyright lasts for the life of the author plus 70 years. However, even if the author died over 70 years ago, the copyright in an unpublished work lasts until December 31, 2002.
  • “For works published after 1977, the copyright lasts for the life of the author plus 70 years. However, if the work is a work for hire (that is, the work is done in the course of employment or has been specifically commissioned) or is published anonymously or under a pseudonym, the copyright lasts between 95 and 120 years, depending on the date the work is published.
  • “Lastly, if the work was published between 1923 and 1963, you must check with the U.S. Copyright Office to see whether the copyright was properly renewed. If the author failed to renew the copyright, the work has fallen into the public domain and you may use it.”

If you are interested in a certain work, the renewal records for works since 1950 are available online at The copyright office can conduct renewal searches for you, as well, for a fee.

Fair Use

There are provisions for “fair use,” where permission is not necessarily required from the author or creator of a work. In these cases, it has been determined by Congress that there are times when the need for the public to be informed is more important than the need of a creator to be compensated. In general, if you want to use someone else’s work in a small, non-competitive way to the benefit of the public, you are probably fine. Courts use these criteria, generally, to determine fair use:

  1. “Is it a competitive use? (In other words, if the use potentially affects the sales of the copied material, it’s usually not fair.)
  2. “How much material was taken compared to the entire work of which the material was a part? (The more someone takes, the less likely it is that the use is fair.)
  3. “How was the material used? Is it a transformative use? (If the material was used to help create something new it is more likely to be considered a fair use than if it is merely copied verbatim into another work. Criticism, comment, news reporting, research, scholarship and non-profit educational uses are most likely to be judged fair uses. Uses motivated primarily by a desire for a commercial gain are less likely to be fair use).”

Being sure to quote and credit an author when using their work to benefit another work is also necessary. When in doubt, if possible, track down the author and ask.


International copyrights are also a growing consideration in a world advancing technologically. The U.S. Office of Policy and International Affairs (PIA) attorneys have “substantial expertise in foreign copyright issues and international copyright treaty obligations.” They work on many copyright issues with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and in other areas. These attorneys serve on “U.S. government delegations for bilateral and regional trade agreements and copyright treaty negotiations between the United States and other countries.”

A number of different organizations work to solidify copyright law throughout the world. The World Intellectual Property Organization is a global organization of the United States with 189 member states and self-funded. The International Federation of Reproduction Rights Organisations (IFRRO) and the European Copyright Commission all work to protect international copyright laws. The Berne Convention is a treaty often referred to in international copyright. It was originally accepted in 1886 and mandates that all countries that sign treat the works of authors and creators in other countries at least as well as they treat their own. This treaty has been amended to include varying types of works over the years as well. The full text of the Berne Convention Treaty of 1971 is available online.


Copyright law may seem complex and even a little intimidating, but really, for the creator, it’s pretty simple. Register your work and you are protected. Even if you don’t register, you’re probably still protected. If in doubt about your own work or using the work of someone else, consult an attorney.

About the author

picture1Houston defense lawyer Greg Tsioros provides legal advice and aggressive representation for clients charged with misdemeanors and felonies at both the state and federal level. Read more about The Law Office of Greg Tsioros at

Posted in Constitution of India, Constitutional Law, IP Law

Constitutional Aspect of Intellectual Property Rights in India

This article has been written by Deepseng Shyam. Deepseng is currently a student in NLU Assam.

Intellectual Property and India has a good long history dating back to the ancient years of Indus Valley Civilization. Evidences show that in the Ancient Era, especially during the Indus Valley Civilization era, activities of town planning, entertainment industries, musical industry and others were highly prevailing and also trademarks have been also used to differentiate the products of the producers from one from another. If we take a look at the present scenario, Intellectual Property like trademarks, are used mainly by every market competitors to differentiate ones product from another. So it is safe to say that the idea to protect one’s product or service from another has been prevailing since the ancient times in India. Intellectual Property Law was first brought to mainstream in India by the British Empire by implementing the British Patent Act, 1852 when an applicant named George A. DePennings made the first application for a patent in India in the year of 1856, which subsequently gave effect in the making of the Act VI of 1856[1]. The recognition of Intellectual Property as a property by the Indian Constitution is vague and unambiguous. The Constitution of India does not openly declare an Intellectual Property as a property but at the same time it also does not reject the same.

The Indian constitution in its preamble permits mixed economy system and recognises the economic liberty as one of the most important liberty. This has been ensured through property system. If the term “property” used in the Indian Constitution is analysed it may mean any tangible property but it has a wider concept. Though, it absolutely includes intellectual property but indirectly. There was a time when “Right to Property” was a fundamental right enshrined in the Indian Constitution under Article 19 (f) but later it was substituted through the 44th amendment. However the substitution of Article 19 (f) didn’t mean the end of “Right to Property”, the insertion of another Article i.e. Article 300A through the 44th Amendment, changed it to a Constitutional right from fundamental right and due to this change any legislation violating the constitutional “Right to Property” could now be challenged only in High Courts and not directly in the Supreme Court. However, Intellectual Property as a form of property can be put under Article 300A dealing with property and be entitled to a legal right. Unlike the Indian Constitution, the United States Constitution specifically protects the Intellectual Property (Article 1(8) of the U.S. Constitutions which provides “To promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries”). However, there is no such Intellectual Property clause in the Indian Constitution. While this means that Intellectual Property does not have special Constitutional status, it also means that there are no Constitutional restrictions on the power to make laws on Intellectual Property. Article 300A of the Indian Constitution provides constitutional safeguards against unlawful deprivation of property it is Article 253 that plays an important role in the context of Intellectual Property Rights as it mandates the recognition of the international aspect of laws, legislations, and agreements and empowers the Indian parliament to enforce the international treaties through law making process. Certain provision in Article 372 also validates the pre-constitutional law subject to certain condition laid down in the provisions. For instance: Article 372 (1) states that: “Nothingwithstanding the repeal……………all the laws in force in the territory of India immediately before the commencement of this constitution shall continue in force therein until altered or repealed or amended by a competent legislature or other competent authority”.

Thus due to the presence of these Articles it became possible for the pre-constitutional Intellectual Property Rights laws to be in force in India and the adoption of various International treaties on Intellectual Property laws by the Indian legislation. For example, the repealing of 1911 Patent Act and the passage of new Patent Act, 1970 was due to Article 372 (1) of the Indian Constitution which authorizes the legislature or any competent body to repeal, alter or amend the pre-constitutional laws. Also, majority of the present Intellectual Property laws are influenced by the international laws, such as the present patent laws is the result of various international instrument like Budapest treaty, TRIPS agreement, UN convention on Biodiversity and others.

Article 31A protected the legislations providing for acquisition of estate or any right therein or their modification on the ground that it took away or abridged any of the rights conferred by Part III of the Constitution. Article 31B restricted the scope for challenge on the plea of violation of fundamental rights. Intellectual Property, in its literal sense, means the things manifested from the exercise of the human brain, a product emerging out of the Intellectual labour of a human being. The two chief items are the writings of authors, and inventions made by the inventors. In its broadest sense, the term “Intellectual Property” includes ideas, concepts know-how, and other creative abstractions, and also, the literary, artistic, or mechanical expressions that embody such abstractions.

The basic difference between this form of property and other forms is that, in Intellectual Property the focus is on the produce of the mind, and not on the product itself. For example, in literary property (copy right) it is not the book which is termed property, but the intellectual creation, which comprises ideas, conceptions, sentiments, thought etc, fixed in a particular form that is considered property for protection. Traditionally only a few items were included in the category of Intellectual Property. At present, generally copyright, designs, patents, and trade mark are classified as Intellectual Property. But by the development of arts, science and technology, many new items have been included in this category.

Further, the mention of Intellectual Property system in the Entries of the Indian Constitutional further provide us with clues that Intellectual Property is indeed recognized by the Indian Constitution. Entry 12, 13, 14 has been rightly included in the List 1 of the 7th Schedule of the Indian Constitution. Entry 49 of List I happens to be the specific one which has been totally and exclusively devoted to intellectual property system. Entry 49 recognizes only patents designs, copyright, trademarks and others. However, it does not recognize the concept of traditional knowledge, biodiversity, geographical indications and others but these categories of intellectual property rights can be included within the existing one. If we look into entry 97 of List I which read as follows “any other matter not enumerated in List II or List III including any tax not mentioned in either of those Lists” and Article 248 reads as “parliament has exclusive power to make any law with respect to any matter not enumerated in the concurrent List or State List”. Thus, it is safe to assume that Traditional knowledge can be included among other Intellectual Properties and are recognized by the Indian Constitution as Intellectual property.


The Constitution of India provides the necessary safeguard to protect the right to property in general and the agricultural property in particular[2].  For example, The Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers Right Act, 2001 is framed to make available a number of special safeguard measures to protect and promote the interests of the farmers in order to encourage the accelerated growth of the agricultural sector which will ultimately result into the overall growth of the Indian economy. Also the Biodiversity Act, 2002 is framed to provide safeguards to various biological resources like “plants, animals and micro-organisms and their genetic material and by-products (excluding value added products) with actual or potential use or value, but not human genetic material against being misused and other unfair commercial or non-commercial activities. In general it is enacted to protect against bio-piracy[3]. A case of such bio-piracy occurred when the US Patent Office granted the patent (Patent No. 5, 401 and 504) for turmeric to two expatriate Indians at University of Mississippi Medical Centre in 1995 which was subsequently challenged by the Indian Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) on the ground of “prior art” or “existing public knowledge”[4]. Although, the CSIR won their battle, this incident shows how traditional knowledge is vulnerable to bio-piracy and thus the need to protect it has grown increasingly.

[1] History of Indian Patent System, available on the official website of Intellectual Property India.  Link:

[2] Article 300A and Article 31A.

[3] Section 2 of Bio-Diversity Act, 2002.

[4] Daima, Dinesh. “Class on Trade Mark Law and Traditional Knowledge”. National Law University, Assam, Guwahati. 5th November, 2016. Class Lecture.

The December book bucket

court-room-genius                    Learning the law.jpg                     legal-eagles

Posted in Case comment, IP Law

How DU Photocopiers brought a breakthrough in Copyright Infringement?

This article is written by Srishti Gupta. Srishti is a fourth-year law student from Vivekananda Institute of Professional Studies, GGSIPU.



The Delhi High Court clearly recognised the socio-economic realities of the India in the case of THE CHANCELLOR, MASTERS & SCHOLARS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD & ORS. V. RAMESHWARI PHOTOCOPY SERVICES & ANR. and caused a major victory to access to justice.

The suit was filed before the Delhi High Court in 2012. In September 2012, an order directing DU to examine the proposal of the plaintiffs that they obtain a license from Reprographic Rights Organisation such as IRRO for preparing course packs was passed. In October 2012, Rameshwari was restrained by the order of the Court from making or selling course packs until final disposal of the application for interim relief.

The first issue raised was whether the  making of course packs by the defendant amounted to infringement to which the defendant contented that this question shall arise only if the making of course packs is not protected under Section 52.

The Court then noted that making of course-packs would fall under Section 52(1)(i) which states that the reproduction of a work by a “teacher/ pupil in the course of instruction” would not constitute infringement. The question now before the court was whether the interpretation of this section was restricted to an individual teacher and an individual pupil or whether it would extend to an institution and its students.

The Court unequivocally held that it cannot be so restricted especially when considering the societal realities. Education in India has for long been institutionalised and therefore, the law cannot and should not be interpreted in such a fashion that it does not reflect the realities of our education system.

The second main contention was with respect to the interpretation of the term “course of instruction” where the court held that the legislature specifically chose to use the word instruction rather than lecture, and therefore, the interpretation of the term “instruction” cannot be limited to that of lecture.

The Court then attempted to determine when the imparting of instruction begins and ends in a university. To this effect, the Court examined various judicial interpretations of the phrases “instruction” as well as “in the course of” and came to the following conclusion that “in the course of instruction” would include reproduction of any work while the process of imparting instruction by the teacher and receiving instruction by the pupil continues. This process begins from the time when the teacher starts to prepare himself/herself for the purpose of teaching the students to the time when the student prepares notes to reproduce what was taught to him or her. This shall also include clarifying doubts, holding tests and answering questions in the examination. Resultantly, reproduction of any copyrighted work by the teacher for the purpose of imparting instruction to the pupil as prescribed in the syllabus during the academic year would be within the meaning of Section 52 (1)(i) of the Act.” 

The Court approached this issue from a different angle as well and noted that a student issuing a book from the DU library and copying the same, whether by hand or by photocopying for her private or personal use would be protected under fair dealing. Therefore, it was absurd to state that if the DU did the exact same act as a direct result of its resource constraints, then the action of DU would constitute infringement and not be protected under fair dealing.

Hence, the Court stated, “When the effect of the action is the same, the difference in the mode of action cannot make a difference so as to make one an offence.”  The Court held that it was irrelevant whether DU was making the course packs by itself or had licensed it to a contractor as long as the impugned act was protected under Section 52.

Moreover, the Court stated that Rameshwari was not a competitor of the plaintiffs and if Rameshwari was not permitted to do so, the consequence would not be that the students would buy the textbooks. Instead, they would have to resort to sitting in the library and copying out the pages by hand.

The Delhi High Court also clearly explained the nature of copyright thus: “Copyright, specially in literary works, is thus not an inevitable, divine, or natural right that confers on authors the absolute ownership of their creations. It is designed rather to stimulate activity and progress in the arts for the intellectual enrichment of the public. Copyright is intended to increase and not to impede the harvest of knowledge. It is intended to motivate the creative activity of authors and inventors in order to benefit the public.”