U.S. Copyright Office Registers First E-Books

Two e-books from the McGraw-Hill Cos. have been registered with the U.S. Copyright Office – The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Wireless Web and The BusinessWeek Guide to the Best Business Schools. The e-books were registered via CORDS (Copyright Office Electronic Registration, Recordation and Deposit System). They are the first copyright claims and deposits of full-length e-books transmitted over the Internet and processed entirely in digital format through CORDS, according to the federal office.

The CORDS system offers e-book publishers a more efficient filing method that saves time and effort in preparing and transmitting copyright applications and deposited works. Once received in the office, the system simplifies processing of copyright applications for e-books by avoiding much of the typing and handling required by paper-based registration procedures. It automatically charges filing fees to CORDS deposit accounts, creates in-process records and prepares preliminary copyright catalog records. CORDS checks the authenticity and integrity of digital submissions through digital signatures and provides secure storage of digital works.

The system permits streamlined processing by the copyright office staff in examining claims, issuing copyright registration certificates, completing copyright catalog records and making these records available to the public via the office's online databases. CORDS provides improved communications with publishers, including e-mail acknowledgments as status reports, and secure e-mail correspondence between copyright examiners and claimants when necessary. Copyright registration for e-book claims can be completed in a few weeks, rather than the longer time period it takes to process claims through traditional procedures.

Since 1996, CORDS has registered about 40,000 copyright claims and deposits from cooperating test partners for electronic works. These works include e-journals, technical reports, computer programs, electronic study guides, dissertations, musical works and now e-books. U.S. Copyright Office, Washington, DC, (202) 707-3000, www.loc.gov/copyright.

Two e-books from the McGraw-Hill Cos. have been registered with the U.S. Copyright Office – The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Wireless Web and The BusinessWeek Guide to the Best Business Schools. The e-books were registered via CORDS (Copyright Office Electronic Registration, Recordation and Deposit System). They are the first copyright claims and deposits of full-length e-books transmitted over the Internet and processed entirely in digital format through CORDS, according to the federal office.

The CORDS system offers e-book publishers a more efficient filing method that saves time and effort in preparing and transmitting copyright applications and deposited works. Once received in the office, the system simplifies processing of copyright applications for e-books by avoiding much of the typing and handling required by paper-based registration procedures. It automatically charges filing fees to CORDS deposit accounts, creates in-process records and prepares preliminary copyright catalog records. CORDS checks the authenticity and integrity of digital submissions through digital signatures and provides secure storage of digital works.

The system permits streamlined processing by the copyright office staff in examining claims, issuing copyright registration certificates, completing copyright catalog records and making these records available to the public via the office's online databases. CORDS provides improved communications with publishers, including e-mail acknowledgments as status reports, and secure e-mail correspondence between copyright examiners and claimants when necessary. Copyright registration for e-book claims can be completed in a few weeks, rather than the longer time period it takes to process claims through traditional procedures.

Since 1996, CORDS has registered about 40,000 copyright claims and deposits from cooperating test partners for electronic works. These works include e-journals, technical reports, computer programs, electronic study guides, dissertations, musical works and now e-books. U.S. Copyright Office, Washington, DC, (202) 707-3000, www.loc.gov/copyright.

This article originally appeared in the 10/01/2001 issue of THE Journal.

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