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Basics of copyright law and procedure from the Copyright Office.
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Basics of copyright law and procedure from the Copyright Office.
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March, 1992
page 1


CIRCULAR 1 - COPYRIGHT BASICS


Copyright Office
Library of Congress
Washington, DC 20559



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page 2

COPYRIGHT BASICS


WHAT COPYRIGHT IS
****************************

Copyright is a form of protection provided by the laws of the
United States (title 17, U.S. Code) to the authors of "original
works of authorship" including literary, dramatic, musical,
artistic, and certain other intellectual works. This protection
is available to both published and unpublished works. Section
106 of the Copyright Act generally gives the owner of copyright
the exclusive right to do and to authorize others to do the
following:

* TO REPRODUCE the copyrighted work in copies or phonorecords

* To prepare DERIVATIVE WORKS based upon the copyrighted work

* TO DISTRIBUTE COPIES OR PHONORECORDS of the copyrighted work
to the public by sale or other transfer of ownership, or by
rental, lease, or lending

* TO PERFORM THE COPYRIGHTED WORK PUBLICLY, in the case of
literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works,
pantomimes, and motion pictures and other audiovisual works
and

* TO DISPLAY THE COPYRIGHTED WORK PUBLICLY, in the case of
literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works,
pantomimes, and pictorial, graphic, or sculptural works,
including the individual images of a motion picture or other
audiovisual work.

It is illegal for anyone to violate any of the rights provided
by the Act to the owner of copyright. These rights, however, are
not unlimited in scope. Sections 107 through 119 of the
Copyright Act establish limitations on these rights. In some
cases, these limitations are specified exemptions from copyright
liability. One major limitation is the doctrine of "fair use,"
which is given a statutory basis in section 107 of the Act. In
other instances, the limitation takes the form of a "compulsory
license" under which certain limited uses of copyrighted works
are permitted upon payment of specified royalties and compliance
with statutory conditions. For further information about the
limitations of any of these rights, consult the Copyright Act or
write to the Copyright Office.


WHO CAN CLAIM COPYRIGHT
******************************

Copyright protection subsists from the time the work is
created in fixed form that is, it is an incident of the process
of authorship. The copyright in the work of authorship
IMMEDIATELY becomes the property of the author who created it.
Only the author or those deriving their rights through the author
can rightfully claim copyright.
In the case of works made for hire, the employer and not the
employee is presumptively considered the author. Section 101 of
the copyright statute defines a "work made for hire" as:
(1) a work prepared by an employee within the scope of his
or her employment or
(2) a work specially ordered or commissioned for use as a
contribution to a collective work, as a part of a motion
picture or other audiovisual work, as a translation, as a
supplementary work, as a compilation, as an instructional
text, as a test, as answer material for a test, or as an
atlas, if the parties expressly agree in a written instrument
signed by them that the work shall be considered a work made
for hire....
The authors of a joint work are co-owners of the copyright in
the work, unless there is an agreement to the contrary.
Copyright in each separate contribution to a periodical or
other collective work is distinct from copyright in the
collective work as a whole and vests initially with the author of
the contribution.

TWO GENERAL PRINCIPLES

* Mere ownership of a book, manuscript, painting, or any other
copy or phonorecord does not give the possessor the copyright.
The law provides that transfer of ownership of any material
object that embodies a protected work does not of itself
convey any rights in the copyright.

* Minors may claim copyright, but state laws may regulate the
business dealings involving copyrights owned by minors. For
information on relevant state laws, consult an attorney.


COPYRIGHT AND NATIONAL ORIGIN OF THE WORK
***********************************************

Copyright protection is available for all unpublished works,
regardless of the nationality or domicile of the author.
Published works are eligible for copyright protection in the
United States if ANY one of the following conditions is met:

* On the date of first publication, one or more of the authors
is a national or domiciliary of the United States or is a
national, domiciliary, or sovereign authority of a foreign
nation that is a party to a copyright treaty to which the
United States is also a party, or is a stateless person
wherever that person may be domiciled or

* The work is first published in the United States or in a
foreign nation that, on the date of first publication, is a
party to the Universal Copyright Convention or the work comes
within the scope of a Presidential proclamation or

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* The work is first published on or after March 1, 1989, in a
foreign nation that on the date of first publication, is a
party to the Berne Convention or, if the work is NOT first
published in a country party to the Berne Convention, it is
published (on or after March 1,1989) within 30 days of first
publication in a country that is party to the Berne Convention
or the work, first published on or after March 1, 1989, is a
pictorial, graphic, or sculptural work that is incorporated in
a permanent structure located in the United States or, if the
work, first published on or after March 1, 1989, is a
published audiovisual work, all the authors are legal entities
with headquarters in the United States.


WHAT WORKS ARE PROTECTED
******************************

Copyright protects "original works of authorship" that are
fixed in a tangible form of expression. The fixation need not be
directly perceptible, so long as it may be communicated with the
aid of a machine or device. Copyrightable works include the
following categories:
(1) literary works
(2) musical works, including any accompanying words
(3) dramatic works, including any accompanying music
(4) pantomimes and choreographic works
(5) pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works
(6) motion pictures and other audiovisual works
(7) sound recordings and
(8) architectural works.
These categories should be viewed quite broadly: for example,
computer programs and most "compilations" are registrable as
"literary works" maps and architectural plans are registrable as
"pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works."


WHAT IS NOT PROTECTED BY COPYRIGHT
**************************************

Several categories of material are generally not eligible for
statutory copyright protection. These include among others:

* Works that have NOT been fixed in a tangible form of
expression. For example: choreographic works that have not
been notated or recorded, or improvisational speeches or
performances that have not been written or recorded.

* Titles, names, short phrases, and slogans familiar symbols or
designs mere variations of typographic ornamentation,
lettering, or coloring mere listings of ingredients or
contents.

* Ideas, procedures, methods, systems, processes, concepts,
principles, discoveries, or devices, as distinguished from a
description, explanation, or illustration.

* Works consisting ENTIRELY of information that is common
property and containing no original authorship. For example:
standard calendars, height and weight charts, tape measures
and rulers, and lists or tables taken from public documents or
other common sources.


HOW TO SECURE A COPYRIGHT
********************************

COPYRIGHT SECURED AUTOMATICALLY UPON CREATION

The way in which copyright protection is secured under the
present law is frequently misunderstood. No publication or
registration or other action in the Copyright Office is required
to secure copyright (see following NOTE). There are, however,
certain definite advantages to registration. (See page 7.)
Copyright is secured AUTOMATICALLY when the work is created,
and a work is "created" when it is fixed in a copy or phonorecord
for the first time. "Copies" are material objects from which a
work can be read or visually perceived either directly or with
the aid of a machine or device, such as books, manuscripts, sheet
music, film, videotape, or microfilm. "Phonorecords" are
material objects embodying fixations of sounds (excluding, by
statutory definition, motion picture soundtracks), such as audio
tapes and phonograph disks. Thus, for example, a song (the
"work") can be fixed in sheet music ("copies") or in phonograph
disks ("phonorecords"), or both.
If a work is prepared over a period of time, the part of the
work that is fixed on a particular date constitutes the created
work as of that date.


PUBLICATION
************************

Publication is no longer the key to obtaining statutory
copyright as it was under the Copyright Act of 1909. However,
publication remains important to copyright owners.
The Copyright Act defines publication as follows:

"Publication" is the distribution of copies or
phonorecords of a work to the public by sale or other
transfer of ownership, or by rental, lease, or lending. The
offering to distribute copies or phonorecords to a group of
persons for purposes of further distribution, public
performance, or public display, constitutes publication. A
public performance or display of a work does not of itself
constitute publication.

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_______________________________________________________________
| |
| NOTE: Before 1978, statutory copyright was generally secured |
| by the act of publication with notice of copyright, assuming |
| compliance with all other relevant statutory conditions. |
| Works in the public domain on January 1, 1978 (for example, |
| works published without satisfying all conditions for securing|
| statutory copyright under the Copyright Act of 1909) remain in|
| the public domain under the current Act. |
| Statutory copyright could also be secured before 1978 by |
| the act of registration in the case of certain unpublished |
| works and works eligible for ad interim copyright. The |
| current Act automatically extends to full term (section 304 |
| sets the term) copyright for all works including those subject|
| to ad interim copyright if ad interim registration has been |
| made on or before June 30, 1978. |
|_______________________________________________________________|

A further discussion of the definition of "publication" can be
found in the legislative history of the Act. The legislative
reports define "to the public" as distribution to persons under
no explicit or implicit restrictions with respect to disclosure
of the contents. The reports state that the definition makes it
clear that the sale of phonorecords constitutes publication of
the underlying work, for example, the musical, dramatic, or
literary work embodied in a phonorecord. The reports also state
that it is clear that any form of dissemination in which the
material object does not change hands, for example, performances
or displays on television, is NOT a publication no matter how
many people are exposed to the work. However, when copies or
phonorecords are offered for sale or lease to a group of
wholesalers, broadcasters, or motion picture theaters,
publication does take place if the purpose is further
distribution, public performance, or public display.
Publication is an important concept in the copyright law for
several reasons:

* When a work is published, it may bear a notice of copyright to
identify the year of publication and the name of the copyright
owner and to inform the public that the work is protected by
copyright. Works published before March 1, 1989, MUST bear
the notice or risk loss of copyright protection. (See
discussion "notice of copyright" below.)

* Works that are published in the United States are subject to
mandatory deposit with the Library of Congress. (See
discussion on page 9 on "mandatory deposit.")

* Publication of a work can affect the limitations on the
exclusive rights of the copyright owner that are set forth in
sections 107 through 120 of the law.

* The year of publication may determine the duration of
copyright protection for anonymous and pseudonymous works
(when the author's identity is not revealed in the records of
the Copyright Office) and for works made for hire.

* Deposit requirements for registration of published works
differ from those for registration of unpublished works. (See
discussion on page 8 of "registration" procedures.)


NOTICE OF COPYRIGHT
*******************************

For works first published on and after March 1, 1989, use of
the copyright notice is optional, though highly recommended.
Before March 1, 1989, the use of the notice was mandatory on all
published works, and any work first published before that date
must bear a notice or risk loss of copyright protection.
(The Copyright Office does not take a position on whether
works first published with notice before March 1, 1989, and
reprinted and distributed on and after March 1, 1989, must bear
the copyright notice.)
Use of the notice is recommended because it informs the public
that the work is protected by copyright, identifies the copyright
owner, and shows the year of first publication. Furthermore, in
the event that a work is infringed, if the work carries a proper
notice, the court will not allow a defendant to claim "innocent
infringement"that is, that he or she did not realize that the
work is protected. (A successful innocent infringement claim may
result in a reduction in damages that the copyright owner would
otherwise receive.)
The use of the copyright notice is the responsibility of the
copyright owner and does not require advance permission from, or
registration with, the Copyright Office.

FORM OF NOTICE FOR VISUALLY PERCEPTIBLE COPIES

The notice for visually perceptible copies should contain all
of the following three elements:

1. THE SYMBOL (c) (the letter C in a circle), or the word
"Copyright," or the abbreviation "Copr." and

2. THE YEAR OF FIRST PUBLICATION of the work. In the case of
compilations or derivative works incorporating previously
published material, the year date of first publication of the
compilation or derivative work is sufficient. The year date

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may be omitted where a pictorial, graphic, or sculptural work,
with accompanying textual matter, if any, is reproduced in or
on greeting cards, postcards, stationery, jewelry, dolls,
toys, or any useful article and

3. THE NAME OF THE OWNER OF COPYRIGHT in the work, or an
abbreviation by which the name can be recognized, or a
generally known alternative designation of the owner.

Example: (c) 1992 John Doe

The "C in a circle" notice is used only on "visually
perceptible copies." Certain kinds of worksfor example,
musical, dramatic, and literary worksmay be fixed not in
"copies" but by means of sound in an audio recording. Since audio
recordings such as audio tapes and phonograph disks are
"phonorecords" and not "copies," the "C in a circle" notice is
not used to indicate protection of the underlying musical,
dramatic, or literary work that is recorded.

FORM OF NOTICE FOR PHONORECORDS OF SOUND RECORDINGS

The copyright notice for phonorecords of sound recordings
[FOOTNOTE 1] has somewhat different requirements. The notice
appearing on phonorecords should contain the following three
elements:

1. THE SYMBOL (p) (the letter P in a circle) and

2. THE YEAR OF FIRST PUBLICATION of the sound recording and

3. THE NAME OF THE OWNER OF COPYRIGHT in the sound recording, or
an abbreviation by which the name can be recognized, or a
generally known alternative designation of the owner. If the
producer of the sound recording is named on the phonorecord
labels or containers, and if no other name appears in
conjunction with the notice, the producer's name shall be
considered a part of the notice.

Example: (p) 1992 A.B.C., Inc.
_______________________________________________________________
| |
| NOTE: Since questions may arise from the use of variant forms|
| of the notice, any form of the notice other than those given |
| here should not be used without first seeking legal advice. |
|_______________________________________________________________|


[ FOOTNOTE 1: Sound recordings are defined as "works that result
from the fixation of a series of musical, spoken, or other
sounds, but not including the sounds accompanying a motion
picture or other audiovisual work, regardless of the nature
of the material objects, such as disks, tapes, or other
phonorecords, in which they are embodied. ]


POSITION OF NOTICE

The notice should be affixed to copies or phonorecords of the
work in such a manner and location as to "give reasonable notice
of the claim of copyright." The notice on phonorecords may
appear on the surface of the phonorecord or on the phonorecord
label or container, provided the manner of placement and location
give reasonable notice of the claim. The three elements of the
notice should ordinarily appear together on the copies or
phonorecords. The Copyright Office has issued regulations
concerning the form and position of the copyright notice in the
CODE OF FEDERAL REGULATIONS (37 CFR Part 201). For more
information, request Circular 3.

PUBLICATIONS INCORPORATING
UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT WORKS

Works by the U.S. Government are not eligible for copyright
protection. For works published on and after March 1, 1989, the
previous notice requirement for works consisting primarily of one
or more U.S. Government works has been eliminated. However, use
of the copyright notice for these works is still strongly
recommended. Use of a notice on such a work will defeat a claim
of innocent infringement as previously described PROVIDED the
notice also includes a statement that identifies one of the
following: those portions of the work in which copyright is
claimed or those portions that constitute U.S. Government
material. An example is:

1992 Jane Brown. Copyright claimed in
Chapters 7-10, exclusive of U.S. Government maps.

Works published before March 1, 1989, that consist primarily
of one or more works of the U.S. Government MUST bear a notice
and the identifying statement.

UNPUBLISHED WORKS

To avoid an inadvertent publication without notice, the author
or other owner of copyright may wish to place a copyright notice
on any copies or phonorecords that leave his or her control. An
appropriate notice for an unpublished work is: Unpublished work
1992 Jane Doe.

EFFECT OF OMISSION OF THE NOTICE
OR OF ERROR IN THE NAME OR DATE

The Copyright Act, in sections 405 and 406, provides
procedures for correcting errors and omissions of the copyright
notice on works published on or after January 1, 1978, and before
March 1, 1989.

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page 6

In general, if a notice was omitted or an error was made on
copies distributed between January 1, 1978, and March 1, 1989,
the copyright was not automatically lost. Copyright protection
may be maintained if registration for the work has been made
before or is made within 5 years after the publication without
notice, and a reasonable effort is made to add the notice to all
copies or phonorecords that are distributed to the public in the
United States after the omission has been discovered. For more
information request Circular 3.


HOW LONG COPYRIGHT PROTECTION ENDURES
******************************************

WORKS ORIGINALLY CREATED
ON OR AFTER JANUARY 1, 1978

A work that is created (fixed in tangible form for the first
time) on or after January 1, 1978, is automatically protected
from the moment of its creation, and is ordinarily given a term
enduring for the author's life, plus an additional 50 years after
the author's death. In the case of "a joint work prepared by two
or more authors who did not work for hire," the term lasts for 50
years after the last surviving author's death. For works made
for hire, and for anonymous and pseudonymous works (unless the
author's identity is revealed in Copyright Office records), the
duration of copyright will be 75 years from publication or 100
years from creation, whichever is shorter.

WORKS ORIGINALLY CREATED BEFORE JANUARY 1, 1978,
BUT NOT PUBLISHED OR REGISTERED BY THAT DATE

Works that were created but not published or registered for
copyright before January 1, 1978, have been automatically brought
under the statute and are now given Federal copyright protection.
The duration of copyright in these works will generally be
computed in the same way as for works created on or after January
1, 1978: the life-plus-50 or 75/100-year terms will apply to
them as well. The law provides that in no case will the term of
copyright for works in this category expire before December 31,
2002, and for works published on or before December 31, 2002, the
term of copyright will not expire before December 31, 2027.

WORKS ORIGINALLY CREATED AND PUBLISHED OR
REGISTERED BEFORE JANUARY 1, 1978

Under the law in effect before 1978, copyright was secured
either on the date a work was published or on the date of
registration if the work was registered in unpublished form. In
either case, the copyright endured for a first term of 28 years
from the date it was secured. During the last (28th) year of the
first term, the copyright was eligible for renewal. The current
copyright law has extended the renewal term from 28 to 47 years
for copyrights that were subsisting on January 1, 1978, making
these works eligible for a total term of protection of 75 years.
However, the copyright MUST be renewed to receive the 47-year
period of added protection. This is accomplished by filing a
properly completed Form RE accompanied by a $12 filing fee in the
Copyright Office before the end of the 28th calendar year of the
original term.
For more detailed information on the copyright term, write to
the Copyright Office and request Circulars 15a and 15t. For
information on how to search the Copyright Office records
concerning the copyright status of a work, request Circular 22.


TRANSFER OF COPYRIGHT
******************************

Any or all of the exclusive rights, or any subdivision of
those rights, of the copyright owner may be transferred, but the
transfer of EXCLUSIVE rights is not valid unless that transfer is
in writing and signed by the owner of the rights conveyed (or
such owner's duly authorized agent). Transfer of a right on a
nonexclusive basis does not require a written agreement.
A copyright may also be conveyed by operation of law and may
be bequeathed by will or pass as personal property by the
applicable laws of intestate succession.
Copyright is a personal property right, and it is subject to
the various state laws and regulations that govern the ownership,
inheritance, or transfer of personal property as well as terms of
contracts or conduct of business. For information about relevant
state laws, consult an attorney.
Transfers of copyright are normally made by contract. The
Copyright Office does not have or supply any forms for such
transfers. However, the law does provide for the recordation in
the Copyright Office of transfers of copyright ownership.
Although recordation is not required to make a valid transfer
between the parties, it does provide certain legal advantages and
may be required to validate the transfer as against third
parties. For information on recordation of transfers and other
documents related to copyright, request Circular 12.

TERMINATION OF TRANSFERS

Under the previous law, the copyright in a work reverted to
the author, if living, or if the author was not living, to other
specified beneficiaries, provided a renewal claim was registered
in the 28th year of the original term. The present law drops the
renewal feature except for works already in the first term of
statutory protection when the present law took effect. Instead,

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page 7

the present law permits termination of a grant of rights after 35
years under certain conditions by serving written notice on the
transferee within specified time limits.
For works already under statutory copyright protection before
1978, the present law provides a similar right of termination
covering the newly added years that extended the former maximum
term of the copyright from 56 to 75 years. For further
information, request Circulars 15a and 15t.


INTERNATIONAL COPYRIGHT PROTECTION
***************************************

There is no such thing as an "international copyright" that
will automatically protect an author's writings throughout the
entire world. Protection against unauthorized use in a
particular country depends, basically, on the national laws of
that country. However, most countries do offer protection to
foreign works under certain conditions, and these conditions have
been greatly simplified by international copyright treaties and
conventions. For a list of countries which maintain copyright
relations with the United States, request Circular 38a.
The United States belongs to both global, multilateral
copyright treatiesthe Universal Copyright Convention (UCC) and
the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic
Works. The United States was a founding member of the UCC, which
came into force on September 16, 1955. Generally, a work by a
national or domiciliary of a country that is a member of the UCC
or a work first published in a UCC country may claim protection
under the UCC. If the work bears the notice of copyright in the
form and position specified by the UCC, this notice will satisfy
and substitute for any other formalities a UCC member country
would otherwise impose as a condition of copyright. A UCC notice
should consist of the symbol accompanied by the name of the
copyright proprietor and the year of first publication of the
work.
By joining the Berne Convention on March 1, 1989, the United
States gained protection for its authors in all member nations of
the Berne Union with which the United States formerly had either
no copyright relations or had bilateral treaty arrangements.
Members of the Berne Union agree to a certain minimum level of
copyright protection and agree to treat nationals of other
member countries like their own nationals for purposes of
copyright. A work first published in the United States or
another Berne Union country (or first published in a non-Berne
country, followed by publication within 30 days in a Berne Union
country) is eligible for protection in all Berne member
countries. There are no special requirements. For information
on the legislation implementing the Berne Convention, request
Circular 93 from the Copyright Office.
An author who wishes protection for his or her work in a
particular country should first find out the extent of protection
of foreign works in that country. If possible, this should be
done before the work is published anywhere, since protection may
often depend on the facts existing at the time of FIRST
publication.
If the country in which protection is sought is a party to one
of the international copyright conventions, the work may
generally be protected by complying with the conditions of the
convention. Even if the work cannot be brought under an
international convention, protection under the specific
provisions of the country's national laws may still be possible.
Some countries, however, offer little or no copyright protection
for foreign works.


COPYRIGHT REGISTRATION
********************************

In general, copyright registration is a legal formality
intended to make a public record of the basic facts of a
particular copyright. However, except in two specific
situations,[FOOTNOTE 2] registration is not a condition of
copyright protection. Even though registration is not generally a
requirement for protection, the copyright law provides several
inducements or advantages to encourage copyright owners to make
registration. Among these advantages are the following:

* Registration establishes a public record of the copyright
claim

* Before an infringement suit may be filed in court,
registration is necessary for works of U.S. origin and for
foreign works not originating in a Berne Union country. (For
more information on when a work is of U.S. origin, request
Circular 93.)

* If made before or within 5 years of publication, registration
will establish prima facie evidence in court of the validity
of the copyright and of the facts stated in the certificate
and

* If registration is made within 3 months after publication of
the work or prior to an infringement of the work, statutory
damages and attorney's fees will be available to the copyright
owner in court actions. Otherwise, only an award of actual
damages and profits is available to the copyright owner.

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page 8

* Copyright registration allows the owner of the copyright to
record the registration with the U.S. Customs Service for
protection against the importation of infringing copies. For
additional information, request Publication No. 563 from:
Commissioner of Customs
ATTN: IPR Branch,
Room 2104
U.S. Customs Service
1301 Constitution Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20229.

Registration may be made at any time within the life of the
copyright. Unlike the law before 1978, when a work has been
registered in unpublished form, it is not necessary to make
another registration when the work becomes published (although
the copyright owner may register the published edition, if
desired).

[ FOOTNOTE 2: Works published with notice of copyright before
January 1, 1978, must be registered and renewed during the
first 28-year term of copyright to maintain protection.
Under sections 405 and 406 of the Copyright Act,
copyright registration may be required to preserve a
copyright on a work first published before March 1, 1989,
that would otherwise be invalidated because the copyright
notice was omitted from the published copies or
phonorecords, or the name or year date was omitted, or
certain errors were made in the year date. ]


REGISTRATION PROCEDURES
*******************************

IN GENERAL

A. To register a work, send the following three elements IN THE
SAME ENVELOPE OR PACKAGE to the Register of Copyrights,
Copyright Office, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.
20559: (see page 11 for what happens if the elements are sent
separately).

1. A properly completed application form
2. A nonrefundable filing fee of $20 for each application
[FOOTNOTE 3]
3. A nonreturnable deposit of the work being registered. The
deposit requirements vary in particular situations. The
GENERAL requirements follow. Also note the information under
"Special Deposit Requirements" immediately following this
section.

* If the work is unpublished, one complete copy or phonorecord.

* If the work was first published in the United States on or
after January 1, 1978, two complete copies or phonorecords of
the best edition.

* If the work was first published in the United States before
January 1, 1978, two complete copies or phonorecords of the
work as first published.

* If the work was first published outside the United States,
one complete copy or phonorecord of the work as first
published.

B. To register a renewal, send:

1. A properly completed RE application form and
2. A nonrefundable filing fee of $12 for each work.


[ FOOTNOTE 3: Copyright fees are adjusted at 5-year intervals,
based on increases in the Consumer Price Index. The next
adjustment is due in 1995. Contact the Copyright Office in
January 1995 for the new fee schedule.
For the fee structure for application Form SE/GROUP,
see instructions on the form. ]

_______________________________________________________________
| |
| NOTE: COMPLETE THE APPLICATION FORM USING BLACK INK PEN OR |
| TYPEWRITER. You may photocopy blank application forms: |
| HOWEVER, photocopied forms submitted to the Copyright Office |
| must be clear, legible, on a good grade of 8 1/2-inch by |
| 11-inch white paper suitable for automatic feeding through a |
| photocopier. The forms should be printed preferably in black |
| ink, head-to-head (so that when you turn the sheet over, the |
| top of page 2 is directly behind the top of page 1). FORMS |
| NOT MEETING THESE REQUIREMENTS WILL BE RETURNED. |
|_______________________________________________________________|


SPECIAL DEPOSIT REQUIREMENTS

Special deposit requirements exist for many types of work. In
some instances, only one copy is required for published works, in
other instances only identifying material is required, and in
still other instances, the deposit requirement may be unique.
The following are three prominent examples of exceptions to the
general deposit requirements:

* If the work is a motion picture, the deposit requirement is
one complete copy of the unpublished or published motion
picture AND a separate written description of its contents,
such as a continuity, press book, or synopsis.

* If the work is a literary, dramatic or musical work
PUBLISHED ONLY ON PHONORECORD, the deposit requirement is
one complete copy of the phonorecord.

* If the work is an unpublished or published computer
program, the deposit requirement is one visually
perceptible copy in source code of the FIRST AND LAST 25
PAGES of the program. For a program of fewer than 50
pages, the deposit is a copy of the entire program. (For
more information on computer program registration,
including deposits for revised programs and provisions for
trade secrets, request Circular 61.)

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page 9

* If the work is in a CD-ROM format, the deposit requirement
is one complete copy of the material, that is, the CD-ROM,
the operating software, and any manual(s) accompanying it.
If the identical work is also available in print or hard
copy form, send one complete copy of the print version AND
one complete copy of the CD-ROM version.

* For information about group registration of serials,
request Circular 62.

In the case of works reproduced in three-dimensional copies,
identifying material such as photographs or drawings is
ordinarily required. Other examples of special deposit
requirements (but by no means an exhaustive list) include many
works of the visual arts, such as greeting cards, toys, fabric,
oversized material (request Circular 40a) video games and other
machine-readable audiovisual works (request Circular 61 and
ML-387) automated databases (request Circular 65) and
contributions to collective works.
If you are unsure of the deposit requirement for your work,
write or call the Copyright Office and describe the work you wish
to register.

UNPUBLISHED COLLECTIONS

A work may be registered in unpublished form as a
"collection," with one application and one fee, under the
following conditions:

* The elements of the collection are assembled in an orderly
form

* The combined elements bear a single title identifying the
collection as a whole

* The copyright claimant in all the elements and in the
collection as a whole is the same and

* All of the elements are by the same author, or, if they are by
different authors, at least one of the authors has contributed
copyrightable authorship to each element.

An unpublished collection is indexed in the CATALOG OF COPYRIGHT
ENTRIES only under the collection title.


CORRECTIONS AND AMPLIFICATIONS OF EXISTING REGISTRATIONS
************************************************************

To correct an error in a copyright registration or to amplify
the information given in a registration, file a supplementary
registration form--Form CA--with the Copyright Office. The
information in a supplementary registration augments but does not
supersede that contained in the earlier registration. Note also
that a supplementary registration is not a substitute for an
original registration, for a renewal registration, or for
recording a transfer of ownership. For further information about
supplementary registration, request Circular 8.


MANDATORY DEPOSIT
FOR WORKS PUBLISHED IN THE UNITED STATES
*********************************************

Although a copyright registration is not required, the
Copyright Act establishes a mandatory deposit requirement for
works published in the United States (see definition of
"publication" on page 3). In general, the owner of copyright, or
the owner of the exclusive right of publication in the work, has
a legal obligation to deposit in the Copyright Office, within 3
months of publication in the United States, 2 copies (or, in the
case of sound recordings, 2 phonorecords) for the use of the
Library of Congress. Failure to make the deposit can result in
fines and other penalties, but does not affect copyright
protection.
Certain categories of works are EXEMPT ENTIRELY from the
mandatory deposit requirements, and the obligation is reduced for
certain other categories. For further information about
mandatory deposit, request Circular 7d.
_______________________________________________________________
| |
| NOTE: LIBRARY OF CONGRESS CATALOG CARD NUMBERS. |
| A Library of Congress Catalog Card Number is different from a |
| copyright registration number. The Cataloging in Publication |
| (CIP) Division of the Library of Congress is responsible for |
| assigning LC Catalog Card Numbers and is operationally |
| separate from the Copyright Office. A book may be registered |
| in or deposited with the Copyright Office but not necessarily |
| cataloged and added to the Library's collections. For |
| information about obtaining an LC Catalog Card Number, |
| contact the CIP Division, Library of Congress, Washington, |
| D.C. 20540. For information on International Standard Book |
| Numbering (ISBN), write to: ISBN , R.R. Bowker/Martindale- |
| Hubbell, 121 Chanlon Road, New Providence, N.J. 07974. Call |
| (908) 665-6770. For information on International Standard |
| Serial Numbering (ISSN), write to: Library of Congress, |
| National Serials Data Program, Washington, D.C. 20540. |
|_______________________________________________________________|

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page 10


USE OF MANDATORY DEPOSIT
TO SATISFY REGISTRATION REQUIREMENTS
********************************************

For works published in the United States the Copyright Act
contains a provision under which a single deposit can be made to
satisfy both the deposit requirements for the Library and the
registration requirements. In order to have this dual effect,
the copies or phonorecords must be accompanied by the prescribed
application and filing fee.


WHO MAY FILE AN APPLICATION FORM
******************************************

The following persons are legally entitled to submit an
application form:

* The author. This is either the person who actually created
the work, or, if the work was made for hire, the employer or
other person for whom the work was prepared.

* The copyright claimant. The copyright claimant is defined in
Copyright Office regulations as either the author of the work
or a person or organization that has obtained ownership of all
the rights under the copyright initially belonging to the
author. This category includes a person or organization who
has obtained by contract the right to claim legal title to the
copyright in an application for copyright registration.

* The owner of exclusive right(s). Under the law, any of the
exclusive rights that go to make up a copyright and any
subdivision of them can be transferred and owned separately,
even though the transfer may be limited in time or place of
effect. The term "copyright owner" with respect to any one of
the exclusive rights contained in a copyright refers to the
owner of that particular right. Any owner of an exclusive
right may apply for registration of a claim in the work.

* The duly authorized agent of such author, other copyright
claimant, or owner of exclusive right(s). Any person
authorized to act on behalf of the author, other copyright
claimant, or owner of exclusive rights may apply for
registration.

There is no requirement that applications be prepared or filed by
an attorney.


APPLICATION FORMS
*****************************

FOR ORIGINAL REGISTRATION

Form TX: for published and unpublished nondramatic literary
works

Form SE: for serials, works issued or intended to be issued in
successive parts bearing numerical or chronological
designations and intended to be continued indefinitely
(periodicals, newspapers, magazines, newsletters,
annuals, journals, etc.)

Short Form/SE and Form SE/GROUP: specialized SE forms for use
when certain requirements are met

Form PA: for published and unpublished works of the performing
arts (musical and dramatic works, pantomimes and
choreographic works, motion pictures and other
audiovisual works)

Form VA: for published and unpublished works of the visual arts
(pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works, including
architectural works)

Form SR: for published and unpublished sound recordings

FOR RENEWAL REGISTRATION

Form RE: for claims to renewal copyright in works copyrighted
under the law in effect through December 31, 1977 (1909
Copyright Act)

FOR CORRECTIONS AND AMPLIFICATIONS

Form CA: for supplementary registration to correct or amplify
information given in the Copyright Office record of an
earlier registration

FOR A GROUP OF CONTRIBUTIONS TO PERIODICALS

Form GR/CP: an adjunct application to be used for registration
of a group of contributions to periodicals in
addition to an application Form TX, PA, or VA

Free application forms are supplied by the Copyright Office.

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page 11
_______________________________________________________________
| |
| COPYRIGHT OFFICE FORMS HOTLINE |
| NOTE: Requestors may order application forms and circulars |
| at any time by telephoning (202) 707-9100. Orders will be |
| recorded automatically and filled as quickly as possible. |
| Please specify the kind and number of forms you are |
| requesting. |
|_______________________________________________________________|


MAILING INSTRUCTIONS
*****************************

All applications and materials related to copyright
registration should be addressed to the Register of Copyrights,
Copyright Office, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. 20559.
THE APPLICATION, NONRETURNABLE DEPOSIT (COPIES, PHONORECORDS,
OR IDENTIFYING MATERIAL), AND NONREFUNDABLE FILING FEE SHOULD BE
MAILED IN THE SAME PACKAGE.
We suggest that you contact your local post office for
information about mailing these materials at lower-cost fourth
class postage rates.


WHAT HAPPENS IF THE THREE ELEMENTS
ARE NOT RECEIVED TOGETHER
******************************************

Applications and fees received without appropriate copies,
phonorecords, or identifying material will NOT be processed and
will ordinarily be returned. Unpublished deposits without
applications or fees will ordinarily be returned, also. In most
cases, published deposits received without applications and fees
can be immediately transferred to the collections of the Library
of Congress. This practice is in accordance with section 408 of
the law, which provides that the published deposit required for
the collections of the Library of Congress may be used for
registration only if the deposit is "accompanied by the
prescribed application and fee...."
After the deposit is received and transferred to another
department of the Library for its collections or other
disposition, it is no longer available to the Copyright Office.
If you wish to register the work, you must deposit additional
copies or phonorecords with your application and fee.


FEES
*******************

Do not send cash. A fee sent to the Copyright Office should
be in the form of a money order, check, or bank draft payable to
the Register of Copyrights it should be securely attached to the
application. A remittance from outside the United States should
be payable in U.S. dollars and should be in the form of an
international money order or a draft drawn on a U.S. bank. Do
not send a check drawn on a foreign bank.


EFFECTIVE DATE OF REGISTRATION
*************************************

A COPYRIGHT REGISTRATION IS EFFECTIVE ON THE DATE THE
COPYRIGHT OFFICE RECEIVES ALL OF THE REQUIRED ELEMENTS IN
ACCEPTABLE FORM, regardless of how long it then takes to process
the application and mail the certificate of registration. The
time the Copyright Office requires to process an application
varies, depending on the amount of material the Office is
receiving and the personnel available. Keep in mind that it may
take a number of days for mailed material to reach the Copyright
Office and for the certificate of registration to reach the
recipient after being mailed by the Copyright Office.
If you are filing an application for copyright registration in
the Copyright Office, you WILL NOT receive an acknowledgement
that your application has been received, but you can expect:

* A letter or telephone call from a Copyright Office staff
member if further information is needed

* A certificate of registration to indicate the work has been
registered or

* If registration cannot be made, a letter explaining why it has
been refused.

Please allow 120 days to receive a letter or certificate of
registration.
If you want to know when the Copyright Office receives your
material, you should send it by registered or certified mail and
request a return receipt from the post office. Allow at least 3
weeks for the return of your receipt.


SEARCH OF COPYRIGHT OFFICE RECORDS
****************************************

The records of the Copyright Office are open for inspection
and searching by the public. Moreover, on request, the Copyright
Office will search its records at the statutory rate of $20 for
each hour or fraction of an hour. For information on searching
the Office records concerning the copyright status or ownership
of a work, request Circulars 22 and 23.


AVAILABLE INFORMATION
*******************************

This circular attempts to answer some of the questions that
are frequently asked about copyright. For a list of other
material published by the Copyright Office, request Circular 2,
"Publications on Copyright." Any requests for Copyright Office
publications or special questions relating to copyright problems
not mentioned in this circular should be addressed to the
Copyright Office, LM 455, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.
20559. To speak to a Copyright Information Specialist, call
(202) 707-3000.
The Copyright Office is not permitted to give legal advice.
If you need information or guidance on matters such as disputes
over the ownership of a copyright, suits against possible
infringers, the procedure for getting a work published, or the
method of obtaining royalty payments, it may be necessary to
consult an attorney.

COPYRIGHT OFFICE * LIBRARY OF CONGRESS * WASHINGTON, D.C. 20559


END
*******************************************************

Note: This file has been edited for use on computer networks.
This editing required the removal of diacritics, underlining, and
fonts such as italics and bold. You can obtain a copy of the
original by writing to the Copyright Office at the above address.

kde 8/92



 December 31, 2017  Add comments

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