U.S. Copyright Office Issues Updated Rule Relating to Group Registration of Newspapers
Issue No. 748 - February 13, 2019

The U.S. Copyright Office has published a final rule in the Federal Register amending its regulations for the group registration of newspapers. The Office previously updated its newspaper group registration regulations in March 2018, implementing several changes to promote efficiency in the registration process and encourage broader participation in the registration system by reducing the burden on applicants. Among other changes, the rule enabled publishers to register a group of newspapers by submitting an electronic application and a PDF copy of each issue within three months after the publication of the earliest issue in the group.

In response to concerns expressed by some publishers over the burdens presented by the three-month deadline, the Office has amended the regulations to eliminate that requirement. Publishers now will be permitted to submit group registration claims regardless of when their newspaper issues were published. Likewise, publishers may electronically file new applications for claims that were refused because they were filed on a paper form or without a digital deposit, or because they were received after the three-month deadline.

The Office will monitor the effect of this change on registrations and Library of Congress collections. In the meantime, the Office has prepared a number of materials to assist applicants seeking to utilize the newspaper group registration option, including a video tutorial, answers to frequently asked questions, and a circular.