U.S. Copyright Office to Implement Online Registration System

On July 1, 2008, the U.S. Copyright Office will implement an online registration system called the electronic Copyright Office (eCO).

Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

Filing an eService claim via eCO offers several advantages:

  • lower filing fee of $35 for a basic claim;
  • fastest processing time;
  • earlier effective date of registration;
  • online status tracking;
  • secure payment by credit or debit card, electronic check or Copyright Office deposit account;
  • and ability to upload certain categories of deposits directly into eCO as electronic files.

Even users who intend to submit a hard copy of the work being registered may file an application and payment online and print out an eCO-generated shipping slip to be attached to the hardcopy deposit. Beginning July 1 eCO may be used to register basic claims to copyright for literary works, visual arts works, performing arts works including motion pictures, sound recordings and single serials. Basic claims include (1) a single work, (2) multiple unpublished works if they are by the same author(s) and owned by the same claimant, and (3) multiple published works if they are all first published together in the same publication on the same date and owned by the same claimant.