Title 37: Patents, Trademarks, and Copyrights
Part 203—FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT: POLICIES AND PROCEDURES
Subchapter A—Copyright Office and Procedures
(a) The Office of the Register of Copyrights has overall responsibility for the Copyright Office and its statutory mandate, specifically: For legal interpretation of the copyright law; administering the provisions of title 17 of the U.S.C.; promulgating copyright regulations; advising Congress and other government officials on domestic and international copyright policy and other intellectual property issues; determining personnel and other resource requirements for the Office; organizing strategic and annual program planning; and preparing budget estimates for inclusion in the budget of the Library of Congress and U.S. Government.
(b) The Office of the Chief of Operations is headed by the Chief of Operations (“COO”), who advises the Register on core business functions and coordinates and directs the day-to-day operations of the Copyright Office. The Office of the COO supervises human capital, the administration of certain statutory licenses, mandatory deposits and acquisitions, and strategic planning functions. This Office interacts with every other senior management office that reports to the Register and frequently coordinates and assesses institutional projects. The COO chairs the Copyright Office's operations committee. The following divisions fall under the oversight of the COO:
(1) The Receipt Analysis and Control Division is responsible for sorting, analyzing, and scanning incoming mail; creating initial records; labeling materials; and searching, assembling, and dispatching electronic and hardcopy materials and deposits to the appropriate service areas. The Division is responsible for operating the Copyright Office's central print room, mail functions, and temporary storage. The Division also processes all incoming fees and maintains accounts, related records, and reports involving fees received.
(2) The Copyright Acquisitions Division administers the mandatory deposit requirements of the Copyright Act, acting as an intermediary between copyright owners of certain published works and the acquisitions staff in the Library of Congress. 17 U.S.C. 407. This Office creates and updates records for the copies received by the Copyright Office; demands particular works or particular formats of works as necessary; and administers deposit agreements between the Library and copyright owners.
(c) The Office of the General Counsel is headed by the General Counsel and Associate Register of Copyrights, who is an expert copyright attorney and one of four legal advisors to the Register. This Office assists the Register in carrying out critical work of the Copyright Office regarding the legal interpretation of the copyright law. The General Counsel liaises with the Department of Justice, other federal departments, and the legal community on a wide range of copyright matters including litigation and the administration of title 17 of the U.S.C. The General Counsel also has primary responsibility for the formulation and promulgation of regulations and the adoption of legal positions governing policy matters and the practices of the Copyright Office.
(d) The Office of Policy and International Affairs is headed by the Associate Register of Copyrights and Director of Policy and International Affairs, who is an expert copyright attorney and one of four legal advisors to the Register. This Office assists the Register with critical policy functions of the Copyright Office, including domestic and international policy analyses, legislative support, and trade negotiations. Policy and International Affairs represents the Copyright Office at meetings of government officials concerned with the international aspects of intellectual property protection, and provides regular support to Congress and its committees on statutory amendments and construction.
(e) The Office of Registration Policy and Practice is headed by the Associate Register of Copyrights and Director of Registration Policy and Practice, who is an expert copyright attorney and one of four legal advisors to the Register. This Office administers the U.S. copyright registration system and advises the Register of Copyrights on questions of registration policy and related regulations and interpretations of copyright law. This Office has three divisions: Literary, Performing Arts, and Visual Arts. It also has a number of specialized sections, for example, in the area of motion pictures. This Office executes major sections of the Compendium of Copyright Office Practices, particularly with respect to the examination of claims and related principles of law.
(f) The Office of Public Information and Education is headed by the Associate Register for Public Information and Education, who is an expert copyright attorney and one of four legal advisors to the Register. This Office informs and helps carry out the work of the Register and the Copyright Office in providing authoritative information about the copyright law to the public and establishing educational programs. The Office publishes the copyright law and other provisions of title 17 of the U.S.C.; maintains a robust and accurate public website; creates and distributes a variety of circulars, information sheets, and newsletters, including NewsNet; responds to public inquiries regarding provisions of the law, explaining registration policies, procedures, and other copyright-related topics upon request; plans and executes a variety of educational activities; and engages in outreach with various copyright community stakeholders.
(g) The Office of Public Records and Repositories is headed by the Director, who is an expert in public administration and one of the Register's top business advisors. This Office is responsible for carrying out major provisions of title 17 of the U.S.C., including establishing records policies; ensuring the storage and security of copyright deposits, both analog and digital; recording licenses and transfers of copyright ownership; preserving, maintaining, and servicing copyright related records; researching and providing certified and non-certified reproductions of copyright deposits; and maintaining the official records of the Copyright Office. Additionally, the Office engages regularly in discussions with leaders in the private and public sectors regarding issues of metadata, interoperability, data management, and open government.
(h) The Copyright Modernization Office (“CMO”) is headed by the Director, who is the Register's top advisor on Copyright Office modernization and oversees the development and implementation of technology initiatives affecting registration and recordation. This Office directs and coordinates all modernization activities on behalf of the U.S. Copyright Office, including resources, communications, stakeholder engagement, and business project management. The CMO ensures that modernization activities are continuously aligned with the Office's and the Library of Congress's strategic goals, and collaborates with the Office and the Library to drive modernization efforts. The CMO provides project management, data management/analytics, and business analysis. It also serves as the primary liaison with the Library of Congress's Office and Chief Information Officer (“OCIO”) and serves in a leadership function on the Office's Modernization Governance Board.
(i) The Chief Financial Officer (“CFO”) is a senior staff position that serves under the Register and oversees all fiscal, financial, and budgetary activities for the Copyright Office. The CFO also oversees the Licensing Division, which administers certain statutory licenses set forth in the Copyright Act. The Division collects royalty payments and examines statements of account for the cable statutory license (17 U.S.C. 111), the satellite statutory license for retransmission of distant television broadcast stations (17 U.S.C. 119), and the statutory license for digital audio recording technology (17 U.S.C. chapter 10). The Division also accepts and records certain documents associated with the use of the mechanical statutory license for making and distributing phonorecords of nondramatic musical works (17 U.S.C. 115) and the statutory licenses for publicly performing sound recordings by means of digital audio transmission (17 U.S.C. 112, 114).
(j) The Office has no field organization.
(k) The Office is located in The James Madison Memorial Building of the Library of Congress, 1st and Independence Avenue SE., Washington, DC. 20559-6000. The Public Information Office is located in Room LM-401. Its hours are 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday except legal holidays. The phone number of the Public Information Office is (202) 707-3000. Informational material regarding the copyright law, the registration process, fees, and related information about the Copyright Office and its functions may be obtained free of charge from the Public Information Office upon request.
(l) All Copyright Office forms may be obtained free of charge from the Public Information Office or by calling the Copyright Office Hotline anytime day or night at (202) 707-9100.
[60 FR 34168, June 30, 1995, as amended at 62 FR 55742, Oct. 28, 1997; 64 FR 36575, July 7, 1999; 65 FR 39819, June 28, 2000; 66 FR 34373, June 28, 2001; 73 FR 37839, July 2, 2008; 76 FR 27898, May 13, 2011; 82 FR 9362, Feb. 6, 2017; 82 FR 9507, Feb. 7, 2017; 83 FR 63064, Dec. 7, 2018]