Compendium of U.S. Copyright Practices, 3rd Edition

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721.9 (H) Acceptable Terminology for an Application to Register a Computer Program

721.9 (H) Acceptable Terminology for an Application to Register a Computer Program

This Section provides guidance for completing the Author Created/Other field and the New Material Included/Other field of the online application, as well as guidance for completing spaces 2 and 6 (B) of paper application Form TX.

The applicant should provide a brief statement in this portion of the application that describes the copyrightable material that the applicant intends to register. The applicant should not describe any uncopyrightable elements or de minimis elements that appear in the program. Likewise, the applicant should not describe the material object in which the program has been fixed.

The U.S. Copyright Office may accept the term “computer program” or any of the terms listed below, provided that they accurately describe the copyrightable authorship that appears in the deposit copy(ies). In most cases, the Office will accept combinations or variant forms of these terms, unless they are contradicted by information provided in the deposit copy(ies) or elsewhere in the registration materials.

• Computer program

• Computer code

• Computer software

• New computer program

• New computer code

• New computer software

• Program code

• Program instructions

• Revised computer program

• Revised computer code

• Revised computer software

• Revision of [specify nature of revision, e.g., revision of software subroutines, revision of program code, etc.]

• Software code

• Software modifications

• Software module(s)

• Software program

• Software routine(s)

• Software subroutine(s)

• Software update(s)

• Source code

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