Reminder: Provide Input on Register of Copyrights

Let the Librarian of Congress, Carla Hayden, know what you want out of the Register of Copyrights position.

Participate in the online survey by January 31, 2017

If you need some help with what to say in the survey, the Illustrators’ Partnership has provided some suggestions. Note that your name and information provided through the survey will appear online.

 

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Copyright Office Extends Comment Period for Section 512 Study

The U.S. Copyright Office has published a Federal Register notice extending the deadlines for public comment in connection with the Office’s study on section 512 of Title 17. The Office requested additional public comments, as well as the submission of empirical research studies assessing issues related to the operation of section 512 on a quantitative or qualitative basis, on November 8, 2016. Public comments are now due no later than 11:59 p.m. Eastern time on February 21, 2017, and empirical research studies are now due no later than 11:59 p.m. Eastern time on March 22, 2017. Additional information, including instructions on how to submit a comment, is available here.

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Copyright Office Initiates Study on the Moral Rights of Attribution and Integrity

In the Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990 (“VARA”), Congress for the first time legislated limited moral rights of attribution and integrity to authors of narrowly defined works of visual arts. These rights, following the model suggested in the international Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works, mirror rights granted to authors by most industrialized nations of the world. They guarantee to authors of so-called fine arts and exhibition photographs the right to claim or disclaim authorship in a work; limited rights to prevent distortion, mutilation, or modification of a work; and the right, under some circumstances, to prevent destruction of a work that is incorporated into a building. VARA covers only limited, fine art categories of “works of visual art”: paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, still photographs produced for exhibition. Within this group, only single copies or signed and numbered limited editions of 200 or less are actually protected. See http://www.law.harvard.edu/faculty/martin/art_law/esworthy.htm  The Copyright Office has a report on waiver of the VARA that includes some history and comparison of the VARA to other nation’s “moral rights” protection for artists.

The U.S. Copyright Office is now undertaking a public study to review how existing U.S. law, including provisions found in Title 17 of the U.S. Code and other federal and state laws, protects the moral rights of attribution and integrity and whether any additional protection is advisable in this area. To support the congressional review of the nation’s copyright law and provide thorough assistance to Congress, the Office is seeking public input on a number of questions.

The Office published a Federal Register notice today soliciting written comments from the public. Instructions for submitting comments are available here. Comments must be received no later than11:59 p.m. Eastern time on March 9, 2017. Reply comments must be received no later than 11:59 p.m. Eastern time on April 24, 2017. The Office may announce one or more public meetings, to take place after written comments are received, by separate notice in the future.

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Take Survey to Provide Info on Copyright Registrations

As previously reported, the U.S. Copyright Office is reviewing the rules on group registration of photographs, group registration of contributions to periodicals, and supplementary registration. In response, several photography organizations:

  • American Photographic Artists
  • American Society of Media Photographers
  • National Press Photographers Association
  • North American Nature Photography Association
  • Professional Photographers of America
  • PLUS Coalition

are conducting a 15-question survey to collect, collate, and provide information to the Copyright Office on these important issues. Participate in this survey by midnight EST January 21, 2017, so that the Copyright Office can hear your voice.

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Librarian of Congress Seeks Input on Register of Copyrights

The public will have the opportunity to provide input to the Library of Congress on expertise needed by the Register of Copyrights, the Librarian of Congress, Carla Hayden, announced today.

Beginning today, December 16, an online survey is open to the public. The survey will be posted through January 31, 2017. Input will be reviewed and inform development of knowledge, skills, and abilities for fulfilling the Register position.

Information provided through the survey will be posted online and submitters’ names will appear. Note that input will be subject to review, and input may not be posted that is off-topic or contains vulgar, offensive, racist, threatening or harassing content; personal information; or gratuitous links to sites that could be considered spam. The Library’s complete comment policy can be viewed here.

To provide input through the survey, click here.

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Copyright Office Extends Comment Period in Rulemakings on Supplementary Registration, Group Registration of Photographs, and Group Registration of Contributions to Periodicals

The U.S. Copyright Office is extending the deadline for submitting written comments in response to three notices of proposed rulemaking on supplementary registration, group registration of photographs, and group registration of contributions to periodicals. These notices were published in the Federal Register on December 1, 2016. Written comments on each proposal are now due no later than 11:59 p.m. eastern time on January 30, 2017.

Additional information on the rulemaking involving supplementary registration, including instructions on how to submit a comment, is available here.

Additional information on the rulemaking involving group registration of photographs is available here.

Additional information on the rulemaking involving group registration of contributions to periodicals is available here.

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The U.S. Copyright Office Proposes New Rules for Registering Photographs

The U.S. Copyright Office today published three notices of proposed rulemaking, which are summarized below.

Supplementary Registration: The U.S. Copyright Office is seeking public comments on proposed amendments to its regulation governing supplementary registration. Under the proposed rule, most applicants will be required to submit an online application in order to correct or amplify the information set forth in a basic registration. In addition, the proposed rule will update and codify certain practices that are set forth in the Compendium of U.S. Copyright Office Practices, Third Edition, and improve the readability of the regulation. The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and instructions on how to submit a comment in this proceeding are available here.

Group Registration of Photographs: The Office is seeking public comments on proposed amendments to its regulation governing the group registration option for published photographs. In addition, the Office is proposing to create a new group registration option for unpublished photographs. Under the proposed rule, applicants will be required to submit an online application and will be allowed to include up to 750 photographs in each submission. The proposed rule will amend the deposit requirement for photographs and photographic databases by requiring applicants to submit their works in digital form. Finally, it will memorialize the Office’s longstanding position regarding the scope of a group registration of photographs. The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and instructions on how to submit a comment in this proceeding are available here.

Group Registration of Contributions to Periodicals: The Office is seeking public comments on proposed amendments to its regulation governing the group registration option for contributions to periodicals. Under the proposed rule, applicants will be required to file their claims through the electronic registration system and upload their contributions in a digital format. The proposed rule will modify some of the eligibility requirements for this group option. It will confirm that the Office may refuse registration or cancel a group registration if these requirements have not been met. And it will memorialize the Office’s longstanding position regarding the scope of a group registration for contributions to periodicals. The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and instructions on how to submit a comment in this proceeding are available here.

Written comments must be received no later than January 3, 2017, at 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time.

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