[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 36 (Monday, February 24, 2020)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 10349-10350]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-03376]



 Copyright Office

37 CFR Parts 201 and 202

[Docket No. 2020-2]

Group Registration of Newsletters

AGENCY: U.S. Copyright Office, Library of Congress.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.


SUMMARY: The U.S. Copyright Office is proposing to amend its regulation 
governing the group registration option for newsletter issues. The 
proposed rule eliminates the requirement that newsletters must be 
published at least two days each week to qualify for a group 
registration. This will let a broader range of newsletter publishers 
register a month of issues, without imposing an administrative burden 
on the Office. In addition, the proposed rule updates the address where 
complimentary subscriptions should be sent for purposes of satisfying 
the mandatory deposit requirement for newsletters and other serials.

DATES: Written comments must be received no later than 11:59 Eastern 
Time on March 25, 2020.

ADDRESSES: For reasons of government efficiency, the Copyright Office 
is using the regulations.gov system for the submission and posting of 
public comments in this proceeding. All comments are therefore to be 
submitted electronically through regulations.gov. Specific instructions 
for submitting comments are available on the Copyright Office website 
at http://copyright.gov/rulemaking/group-newsletters-frequency/. If 
electronic submission of comments is not feasible due to lack of access 
to a computer and/or the internet, please contact the Office using the 
contact information below for special instructions.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Robert J. Kasunic, Associate Register 
of Copyrights and Director of Registration Policy and Practice, 
[email protected];

[[Page 10350]]

Erik Bertin, Deputy Director of Registration Policy and Practice, 
[email protected]; or Kevin Amer, Deputy General Counsel, 
[email protected]. They can be reached by telephone at (202) 707-

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Office has established a group 
registration option that lets a newsletter publisher register an entire 
month of issues with one application and one filing fee. A publisher 
may use this option if each issue is ``an all-new issue or an all-new 
collective work that has not been previously published.'' \1\ In 
addition, the newsletter ``must usually'' be published ``at least two 
days each week.'' \2\ The word ``usually'' was added to the regulation 
``to account for occasional situations where the newsletter suspends 
publication (e.g. for a holiday).'' \3\

    \1\ 37 CFR 202.4(f)(1)(iii).
    \2\ 37 CFR 202.4(f)(1)(i).
    \3\ 83 FR 22902, 22904 (May 17, 2018).

    It has come to the Office's attention that many newsletters are 
published just once a week. The requirement that publication must 
usually occur at least twice a week renders these newsletters 
ineligible for this group registration option. Some newsletter 
publishers may be able to use the group registration option for serials 
(which is specifically intended for publications that are distributed 
at intervals of a week or longer), but to do so each issue ``must be an 
all-new collective work.'' \4\ Thus, if a newsletter is published once 
a week and if those issues do not qualify as all-new collective works, 
the publisher may not qualify for the group registration option for 
newsletters or the group registration option for serials. For these 
types of newsletters, the publisher must submit a separate application 
and filing fee for each issue.

    \4\ 37 CFR 202.4(d)(1)(iii). See id. (d)(1)(v).

    To address this issue, the Office has decided to eliminate the 
requirement that newsletters must be published at least two days a week 
to qualify for the group registration option for newsletters.\5\ This 
will let publishers register newsletters that otherwise would be 
ineligible for this option, without imposing an administrative burden 
on the Office.

    \5\ To be eligible for group registration under this rule, the 
group must consist of at least two issues, and all of the issues 
included in the group must be published in the same calendar month. 
37 CFR 202.4(f)(1)(ii), (v).

    Newsletter publishers will still be required to complete and submit 
an online application and upload a digital deposit to seek a group 
registration.\6\ The online application is labeled ``Daily 
Newsletters,'' but to be clear, this form may be used to register any 
newsletter, even if it is not published on a daily basis, as long as 
all of the issues are published within the same month.

    \6\ 37 CFR 202.4(f)(2), (3).

    Likewise, newsletter publishers will still be required to comply 
with the mandatory deposit requirement if the newsletter is published 
in the United States in a physical form.\7\ To satisfy this 
requirement, the publisher must provide the Library of Congress with up 
to two complimentary subscriptions to the newsletter.\8\ To facilitate 
this process, the Office is updating the mailing address where 
complimentary subscription copies should be sent.

    \7\ 37 CFR 202.19(d)(2)(xi).
    \8\ Newsletters that are published solely in electronic format 
remain subject to the Library's on-demand mandatory deposit regime 
for electronic serials. See 37 CFR 202.19(c)(5), 202.24.

    The Office welcomes public input on the following proposed changes.

List of Subjects

37 CFR Part 201

    Copyright, General Provisions.

 37 CFR Part 202

    Copyright, Preregistration and registration of claims to copyright.

Proposed Regulations

    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, the Copyright Office 
proposes amending 37 CFR parts 201 and 202 as follows:


1. The authority citation for part 201 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 17 U.S.C. 702.

2. Revise Sec.  201.1(c)(6) to read as follows:

Sec.  201.1   Communication with the Copyright Office.

* * * * *
    (c) * * *
    (6) Mandatory Deposit Copies. Mandatory deposit copies of published 
works submitted for the Library of Congress under 17 U.S.C. 407 and 
Sec.  202.19 of this chapter (including serial publications that are 
not being registered) should be addressed to: Library of Congress, U.S. 
Copyright Office, Attn: 407 Deposits, 101 Independence Avenue SE, 
Washington, DC 20559-6600, except that mandatory deposit copies 
submitted as complimentary subscriptions for serial publications that 
are being registered should be addressed to: Library of Congress, Group 
Serials Registration, Washington, DC 20540-4161.
* * * * *


3. The authority citation for part 202 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 17 U.S.C. 408(f), 702.

4. Amend Sec.  202.4(f)(1)(i) by removing ``Publication must usually 
occur at least two days each week and the'' and adding ``The'' in its 

    Dated: February 5, 2020.
Regan A. Smith,
General Counsel and Associate Register of Copyrights.
[FR Doc. 2020-03376 Filed 2-21-20; 8:45 am]