Today in Copyright History: 7/22

On July 22, 1897, Boston book dealer and noted copyright expert Thorvald Solberg was appointed the first Register of Copyrights for the newly-created U.S. Copyright Office.  Appointed by John Russell Young, the Librarian of Congress, Solberg served as Register for 33 years, grew the Office from a few clerks to a professional staff of over 100 people, and was an influential voice in the policy and passage of the Copyright Act of 1909.  From the History of Copyright Timeline at the U.S. Copyright Office.

 
Public domain, via the U.S. Copyright Office.

Public domain, via the U.S. Copyright Office.

 

Today in Copyright History: 7/10

On July 10, 1870, San Domingo, a travel account by De Benneville Randolph Keim, was the first work registered for copyright in the Library of Congress

104 years later, on July 10, 1974, the United States joined the 1971 revision of the Universal Copyright Convention (“UCC”).  Originally adopted in Geneva, Switzerland in 1952, the UCC is one of two principal international copyright conventions, the other being the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works.  The U.S. has been a member of the UCC since 1955, and a member of the Berne Convention since 1989.  From the History of Copyright Timeline at the U.S. Copyright Office.

Today in Copyright History: 7/8

On July 8, 1870, the second general revision of U.S. copyright law centralized copyright activities, including registration and deposit, in the Library of Congress.  It also extended protection to works of art, gave authors the right to create their own derivative works, including translations and dramatizations, and began the indexing of registration records.  From the History of Copyright Timeline at the U.S. Copyright Office.

Today in Copyright History: 7/3

On July 3, 1891, the play Saints and Sinners, written by English dramatist Henry Arthur Jones and published by Macmillan and Co., became the first foreign work registered in the United States.  From the History of Copyright Timeline at the U.S. Copyright Office.

 
Public domain, via Internet Archive ( https://archive.org/details/saintsandsinner01jonegoog ).

Public domain, via Internet Archive (https://archive.org/details/saintsandsinner01jonegoog).

 

This Month in Copyright History

In July 1891, records of registered works were published in book form for the first time.  This compilation, now called the Catalog of Copyright Entries, was published semi-annually in book form by the U.S. Copyright Office from 1891 through 1978, and on microfiche from 1979 through 1982.  Today, all registration records from 1978 to the present are publicly accessible through the Office’s website.  More information about obtaining access to copyright registration records is available here.  From the History of Copyright Timeline at the U.S. Copyright Office.

 
Public domain, via the Library of Congress ( https://archive.org/details/catalogoftitleen11118libr ).

Public domain, via the Library of Congress (https://archive.org/details/catalogoftitleen11118libr).

 

Today in Copyright History: 7/1

On July 1, 2007, electronic registration on the U.S. Copyright Office website was made available to the public.  The eCO Registration System (“electronic Copyright Office”) offers numerous advantages over traditional paper filings, such as faster application processing, online status tracking, significantly lower fees, more payment options, the ability to upload certain types of works as electronic files, and, of course, the convenience of doing all of the above in your pajamas, if you are so inclined.  From the History of Copyright Timeline at the U.S. Copyright Office.