Copyright Office Encourages Filers to Include Titles of Unpublished Works with Registration

While it’s not officially required, the U.S. Copyright Office is telling some copyright registration filers to include a list of titles of the works when registering a group of unpublished works. For example, a Copyright Office staff member told concert photographer, David Oppenheimer:

Very briefly, individual titles of works in a collection are not currently required on the application, but it’s possible they may be in the future.  We recommend that individual titles be included on an application as Contents Titles (if using eCO) so that they appear both on the certificate and in C.O. catalog records.  There have been some recent court cases which indicate that the individual titles need to be included on the registered certificate in order for those works to be covered, but I believe those cases are on appeal and not yet settled.  Nonetheless, we are advising that they be included on the application for a collection.

Also, a letter was posted by a participant of the STOCKPHOTO Yahoo email group, available here:  http://tinyurl.com/registrationtitles.  In sum, the Copyright Office advised the recipient to:

  1. give a collection title only in the primary application title area;
  2. to list all of your particular titles in the “Contents Titles”;
  3. to upload a titles page as one of the links that you attach to your case.

If you mail rather than upload your deposit copies of your photos, then you still should list all contents titles in the electronic application and include a “Contents Titles” page with the mailed “hard-deposit.”

While this is not now required, the Copyright Office is encouraging registrants to follow this procedure.  We are looking into this further and will provide updates as we uncover more information.

UPDATE:  ASMP gives its thoughts on this topic: http://asmp.org/content/registration-counts#alert

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