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By J.D. Houvener
Patent Attorney and Founder

Hi everyone! I’m J.D. Houvener, your host of the Bold Today’s Show, where you, the inventor, entrepreneur, business owner, get your daily dose of inspiration so you can go make the world a better place. [Music]

What I want to talk about here today is the actual process. What do you need to submit in order to get a copyright registration? It is, in fact, oftentimes the written work—sorry, I forgot, a book, a manuscript you’ve created. You’ve got to submit it, whether it’s electronic, which is how most submissions are done nowadays, but you can certainly still submit a hard copy. That’s what you will be required to do if you’ve got something like a sculpture, an actual three-dimensional object that you’ve done. But usually, for music, it’s done with an electronic transportable file like an mp3, and anything with regard to a performance is usually done with a video on top of the written choreograph for that. So, these are the types of substantive deliverables, tangible things that get submitted to the Copyright Office.

The actual steps are quite easy online; it walks you right through a step-by-step process. What the Copyright Office wants to know is when the piece of work was created, right? So, your actual legal name, then what it is—defining in words what it is. You provide it in a summary fashion, and then the actual article, what it is you produced. And the Copyright Office is not going to reject or deny it; they’re going to stamp and certify that things are what they are, as long as they match up with the legal representation, and what gets delivered to them is recognizable. They will verify, reconcile, and make sure that it matches up. If it all does, the office will certify it and get you that registered copyright that you’ll want to have on certain products, sort of media that you’re going to be producing and selling. In most cases that go to court, that’s the step they take just before they file the lawsuit, to seek copyright registration. They do that so that the judge at the beginning of the trial does not have to go through the evidentiary process of creating proof that you, the creator of this piece of work, actually created it at this time and date. There’s a lot of argument and testimony about who developed what and when, but if there’s definitive evidence at the Copyright Office, you’ve already got that prima facie evidence that you, the author, credited as of that date.

Hope you learn a little bit of something here. If you have the ability, please forward this to someone you might know who’s interested in intellectual property and specifically patent law. Love to talk with them. Our website is BoldIP.com; you can always give us a call.

About the Author
J.D. Houvener is a Registered USPTO Patent Attorney who has a strong interest in helping entrepreneurs and businesses thrive. J.D. leverages his technical background in engineering and experience in the aerospace industry to provide businesses with a unique perspective on their patent needs. He works with clients who are serious about investing in their intellectual assets and provides counsel on how to capitalize their patents in the market. If you have any questions regarding this article or patents in general, consider contacting J.D. at https://boldip.com/contact/