US Copyright Office 17 priorities

Register of Copyrights Maria A. Pallante has made public the “priorities and special projects” of the US Copyright Office from October 2011 to October 2013. The ambitious work plan sets 17 priorities in the areas of copyright policy and administrative practices, and 10 special projects “to improve the quality and efficiency of the U.S. Copyright Office’s services.”

The 16 page document is available here
Comments should be sent to

Here’s a quick outline:

3 Studies

1) Study re alternative means of resolving copyright infringement claims when the claims are likely to be limited amount of monetary relief. Initial public comments due January 16,2012

2) Study on issues re providing federal coverage of US sound recording created before Febriary 15, 1972. To be published December 2011

3) Preliminary analysis of issues re mass book digitization. Including “possible method to facilitate digitization projects including voluntary, extended, and statutory collective licensing”, implications of proposal to address orphan works and section 108 Library and archives exception. Publication October 2011

Legislative works

4) Finding a legislative solution to address “Rogue Websites” or online infringement including when from overseas.

5) Illegal Streaming legislation

6) Extension of the public performance right in sound recordings

7) Orphan works solution

8) The C.O will provide discussion document and recommendations re copyright exceptions for libraries Archives (and museum)

9) Compulsory license for retransmission of distant and local broadcast TV signals by cable operators and satellite carriers. Following the August 29, 2011 report, the C.O. will continue to work the phase out of the compulsory license and transition to market models


10) Text for a proposed treaty for audiovisual performers (Diplomatic Conference summer 2012)
Possible international instruments for the dissemination of materials (within countries and cross borders)for blind, visually impaired and print disabled persons
Possible international instruments for broadcast signals
Trusted Intermediary Global Accessible Resources Project (TIGAR)
Participation in possible international recognition of and protection for traditional cultural expressions

Trans-Pacific Partnership and other trade priorities

11) Continuing support for USTR et al. re TPPA and pending FTAs, Special 301, China, APEC etc.

Administrative practice

12) Fifth Triennial DMCA rulemaking. Comments due December 2011. Reply comments February 2012.

13) Revised Electronic system for the designation of agents under the DMCA

14) Review of group registration options (photographs or unpublished collections) Proposal first half of 2012

15) Registration options for websites and other forms of auhtorship?

16) Electronic Administration of the statutory licenses

17) Recording notices of termination of copyright transfers. Will seek comments in 2012

The 10 Special projects include study of fees and services, technical upgrades to electronic registration, dialogues and roundtables with copyright community starting November 2011, research partnership with academic community, revision of website, public outreach and education, business process reengineering of recordation division, public access to historical records and staff training.