[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 180 (Wednesday, September 17, 2014)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 55694-55695]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-22232]



U.S. Copyright Office

37 CFR Part 201

[Docket No. 2014-08]

Fees for Submitting Corrected Electronic Title Appendices

AGENCY: U.S. Copyright Office, Library of Congress.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.


SUMMARY: The U.S. Copyright Office published elsewhere in this issue of 
the Federal Register a final rule amending its regulations to allow 
remitters to submit title lists in electronic format when recording a 
document pertaining to 100 or more copyrighted works. As the rule 
explains, when a remitter submits an electronic title list along with a 
document for recordation, the Office will use the information in the 
electronic list to populate its online Public Catalog. In response to 
comments received during the electronic title list rulemaking, the 
Office also established a process to allow a remitter to correct 
inaccuracies in the Office's online Public Catalog resulting from 
errors in an electronic list submitted by the remitter. In this 
separate notice of proposed rulemaking, the Office seeks to establish a 
new fee for this correction service at the rate of seven dollars per 
corrected title.

DATES: Written comments are due on or before October 17, 2014.

ADDRESSES: All comments shall be submitted electronically. A comment 
submission page is posted on the Copyright Office Web site at http://copyright.gov/rulemaking/etitle-fees/. The Web site interface requires 
commenting parties to complete a form specifying their name and 
organization, as applicable, and to upload comments as an attachment 
via a browser button. To meet accessibility standards, commenting 
parties must upload comments in a single file not to exceed six 
megabytes (MB) in one of the following formats: A Portable Document 
File (PDF) format that contains searchable, accessible text (not an 
image); Microsoft Word; WordPerfect; Rich Text Format (RTF); or ASCII 
text file format (not a scanned document). The maximum file size is 6 
megabytes. The form and face of the comments must include both the name 
of the submitter and organization. The Office will post the comments 
publicly on the Office's Web site in the form that they are received, 
along with associated names and organizations. If electronic submission 
of comments is not feasible, please contact the Office at 202-707-8350 
for special instructions.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Sarang V. Damle, Special Advisor to 
the General Counsel, by email at [email protected] or by telephone at 202-
707-8350, or Abi Oyewole, Attorney-Advisor, by email at [email protected] or 
by telephone at 202-707-8350.


I. Background

    Over the past several years, the Copyright Office has sought public 
input on technological upgrades to the recordation function. See 78 FR 
17722 (Mar. 22, 2013); 79 FR 2696 (Jan. 15, 2014). In addition to 
seeking written comments, the Office has held focused discussions with 
copyright owners, users of copyright records, technical experts, public 
interest organizations, lawyers, and professional and industry 
associations regarding the same. See 79 FR 6636 (Feb. 4, 2014). 
Participants in these processes have expressed a number of concerns 
about the current recordation system, including frustration with the 
submission process, the amount of time the Office requires to record 
remitted documents, and the searchability of the public record. These 
problems are related in part to the fact that recordation remains a 
paper-driven process (in contrast to most registration transactions, 
which occur electronically).\1\

    \1\ For further information, see the comments obtained during 
the Copyright Office's two-year Special Projects process, 
particularly the Special Project on Technical Upgrades to 
Registration and Recordation Functions. Comments pertaining to the 
Special Project on Technological Upgrades to Registration and 
Recordation Functions are available on the Copyright Office Web site 
at http://www.copyright.gov/_upgrades/comments/.

    To date, recordation specialists have had to review paper documents 
and manually transcribe selected information from the documents into an 
electronic format in order to permit indexing in the Office's online 
Public Catalog. Among the information that must be transcribed are the 
titles of copyrighted works associated with a document submitted for 
recordation, which are typically presented in a list appended to the 
document, referred to informally as a ``title appendix.'' A title 
appendix associated with a document can include hundreds, or even 
thousands, of titles. The Office attributes the long processing times 
associated with document recordation in considerable part to the manual 
entry of these titles. In an effort to reduce processing time for 
recorded document submissions, on July 16, 2014, the

[[Page 55695]]

Office proposed a new rule that would, among other things, allow 
remitters to submit electronic title appendices containing 100 or more 
titles in electronic format. See 79 FR 41470 (July 16, 2014).
    The Recording Industry Association of America, Inc., (``RIAA'') 
commented on the proposed rule, stating, among other things, that the 
Office should ``provide for a mechanism or procedure by which a 
remitter can easily correct any errors to the electronic title list 
that the remitter has supplied.'' \2\ The Office agreed, and has 
adopted such a procedure as part of the final electronic title list 
rule, to be codified at 37 CFR 201.4(c)(4)(v). See the final rule 
entitled ``Changes to Recordation Practices'' published elsewhere in 
this issue of the Federal Register. Under the new Sec.  201.4(c)(4)(v), 
if a remitter discovers that an error in an electronic title list has 
led to the inaccurate cataloging of a recorded document, it may submit 
a corrected title list to the Copyright Office in accordance with the 
procedures set forth in the rule. However, to avoid delay in 
implementing the electronic title list option, the Office decided to 
issue that final rule without imposition of a fee for corrections until 
such time as a fee is set in accordance with this separate notice.\3\

    \2\ Recording Industry Ass'n of Am., Inc., Comments Submitted in 
Response to U.S. Copyright Office's July 16, 2014 Notice of Proposed 
Rulemaking (Aug. 15, 2014) (``RIAA Comments''), available at http://copyright.gov/rulemaking/recordation-practices/docket2014-4/comments/RIAA.pdf.
    \3\ There are already fees in effect for the recordation of the 
document and processing of associated titles. See 37 CFR 

II. Discussion

    Section 708(a) of title 17 authorizes the Register to fix fees for 
services other than those enumerated in paragraphs (1)-(9) of section 
708(a) based on cost and without prior submission to Congress.\4\ See 
17 U.S.C. 708(a). Fees for Office services that the Register has the 
discretion to establish based on cost and without Congressional review 
include fees for copying Office records, fees for mail and delivery 
services, and fees for special handling. See 79 FR 15910, 15916-17 
(Mar. 24, 2014). With the rule proposed herein, the Office seeks to 
adopt a new fee to recover costs associated with the correction of 
errors in the online Public Catalog following recordation of a document 
where the errors stem from a remitter's inaccurate electronic title 

    \4\ Fees for core Office services such as registration of a 
claim, recording a transfer of copyright ownership or other 
document, issuance of a certificate of registration, and certain 
other services are to be submitted by the Register to Congress 
before they take effect. See 17 U.S.C. 708(a)-(b).

    Based on a cost analysis, the Office believes that the initial fee 
for this service should be established at seven dollars per corrected 
title. The Office arrived at the seven dollar amount by considering the 
various personnel and systems costs associated with providing the new 
service. To process a corrected title list, senior recordation staff 
must first review the nature and extent of corrections, and the 
Office's accounting staff must process the payment associated with the 
submission. Then, the corrections must be individually transcribed into 
the Office's online Public Catalog; this is a labor-intensive process 
that involves searching for the original entry by volume and document 
number, finding the title or titles that require correction, and 
amending and/or adding new titles to the database. Once entered into 
the online Public Catalog, the resulting changes must be checked to 
ensure the correction process was successful.
    After evaluating the anticipated personnel and overhead expenses 
that will be incurred to accomplish the above tasks, the Office 
estimates the average cost to be seven dollars per corrected title. The 
Office therefore proposes to establish the new fee at that amount.

List of Subjects in 37 CFR Part 201


Proposed Regulations

    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, the Copyright Office 
proposes amending 37 CFR part 201 as follows:


1. The authority citation for part 201 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 17 U.S.C. 702.

2. In Sec.  201.3, revise paragraph (c)(16) to read as follows:

Sec.  201.3  Fees for registration, recordation, and related services, 
special services, and services performed by the Licensing Division.

* * * * *

       Registration, recordation and related services          Fees ($)
                              * * * * * * *                  ...........
(16) Recordation of document, including a notice of                  105
 intention to enforce (single title).......................
Additional titles (per group of 1 to 10 titles)............           35
Correction of online Public Catalog data due to erroneous              7
 electronic title submission (per title)...................
                              * * * * * * *

* * * * *
3. In Sec.  201.4, as added elsewhere in this issue of the Federal 
Register, effective October 17, 2014, revise the last sentence of 
paragraph (c)(4)(v) to read as follows:

Sec.  201.4  Recordation of transfers and certain other documents.

* * * * *
    (c) * * *
    (4) * * *
    (v) * * * Upon receipt of a corrected electronic list in proper 
form and the appropriate fee, the Office will proceed to correct the 
data in the online Public Catalog, and will make a note in the record 
indicating that the corrections were made and the date they were made.
* * * * *

    Dated: September 11, 2014.
Jacqueline C. Charlesworth,
General Counsel and Associate Register of Copyrights.
[FR Doc. 2014-22232 Filed 9-16-14; 8:45 am]