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CO Offers Electronic Registration for Single Copyright on Interim Basis

Posted by Rebecca Blake on July 05, 2013

US Copyright Office logoOn June 28th, the Copyright Office amended its regulations to offer a new electronic registration option, the Single Application Option. The intention is to provide a simplified application process for individual author claimants to register a single work (not made for hire) for the same price as the standard application, $35. The interim rule was implemented in response to the Office's January 2012 Notice ofInquiry (NOI), in which the Office asked whether special consideration should be provided to registration of single works, where the author is also the copyright holder and the work was not made for hire. The NOI recieved four comments, all strongly in favor of a simplified system for single author/single work registration. The proposed ruling was published in March 2012, and elicited 10 comments raising issues addressed in the iterim ruling.

The single author/single word registration option is offered as a simpler process to encourage greater copyright registration. The ruling limits the works which can be registered with this process: the registration is only offered electronically; only works created by single authors (no joint works); only works with a single claimant/author (no works made-for-hire or works in which copyright was transferred); only a single work (for example, only one illustration; no collections of works, websites, group registrations, etc.). Works which don't meet these criteria can be registered with the standard online registration process. Full information can be read in the Copyright Office's Interim final rule.

More details regarding the single author/single work registration will be forthcoming. The Copyright Office seeks public comment on the interim rule, and will modify the rule if such action is warranted. Public comment is due August 28th, and should be submitted as searchable PDF (not a PDF of a scanned document), Word document, Rich Text document, or ASCII text file format.

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