Recordation and Reengineering


The United States Copyright Office is requesting public comment on proposed key elements relevant to reengineering the function of recording documents pertaining to copyright pursuant to 17 U.S.C. § 205. It will also hold three public hearings on these elements. The elements have been developed with the aid of previous comments obtained during the Office’s two-year Special Projects process, particularly the Special Project on Technical Upgrades to Registration and Recordation Functions. (That Project’s Notice of Inquiry and the comments received in response are available at http://www.copyright.gov/docs/technical_upgrades/.)


Over the past two years, the Copyright Office has sought comments on technological upgrades to the recordation function, and has held focused discussions with copyright owners, users of copyright records, technical experts, public interest organizations, lawyers, and professional and industry associations. Participants in that process have expressed a number of serious concerns about the current recordation system, and have offered a variety of helpful suggestions for improvement.

In particular, the Office is seeking comment and holding public hearings on the following elements: (1) a guided remitter responsibility model of electronic recordation; (2) the use of structured electronic documents that contain their own indexing information; (3) the linking of recordation records to registration records; (4) the use of standard identifiers, and other metadata standards, in recorded documents and the catalog of such documents; and (5) potential additional incentives to record documents pertaining to copyrights. Further explanation of these elements is to be found below in the “Supplementary Information” section of this Notice.

Public Meetings

The Copyright Office will hold public meetings on reengineering the recordation of documents in Los Angeles on March 25, 2014, in Palo Alto on March 26, 2014 and in New York City on March 28, 2014. The Office is holding these discussions to learn more about the topics listed in its January 15, 2014 Notice of Inquiry. Please see Notice of Public Meetings for details on time and location.


Requests may be submitted using the participant request form provided or sent by e-mail to USCOrecordation@loc.gov by Friday, February 28, 2014. Each request to participate in a public meeting should include the name of the requestor; the requestor’s organizational affiliation and title; and complete contact information, including postal address, e-mail address, and telephone number. In addition, please indicate the meeting location you wish to attend. If the requestor, or the organization that the requestor is representing, has submitted comments in response to the Notice of Inquiry, the request should identify those comments. Requestors who have not submitted comments should include a brief summary of their views on the topics they wish to discuss. Persons who are unable to submit a request to participate by e-mail should contact Joanna Corwin at 202-707-7827. Confirmations of participation will be sent via e-mail by March 5, 2014.