Copyright Compendium

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Chapter 2400

2309.9 (D) Failure to Identify the Work

 

2309.9 (D) Failure to Identify the Work

 

The Office will record a transfer or other document pertaining to copyright, even if it does not identify the work that is the subject of the transaction. In this situation, the recordation specialist will record the document without communicating with the remitter, but will add an annotation to the record, such as: “No titles given.”

 

Although the document will be recorded, the recordation may not provide constructive notice of the facts stated in the document. As discussed in Section 2309.3 (A), a recordation provides constructive notice only if the work has been registered and if “the document or the materials attached to it, specifically identifies the work to which it pertains so that, after the document is indexed by the Register of Copyrights, it would be revealed by a reasonable search under the title or registration number of the work.” 17 U.S.C. § 205 (C).

 

Example:

 

• The Office receives an exclusive license involving “an unpublished novel about New York’s Empire State Building, by Jack Douglas.” The recordation specialist will record the license with an annotation, such as: “No titles given.” Because the license does not identify the title of the work, the recordation may not provide constructive notice of the facts stated in the document.