Group Copyright Registration of Unpublished Photographs to be Limited to 750

Despite the best efforts of APA and other trade associations of visual artists, including both the Coalition of Visual Artists and the Copyright Alliance, the Copyright Office has ignored much of the public comment of photographers in releasing their new rules that take effect February 20, 2018.

Unfortunately, group registrations of published or unpublished photos will be limited to 750 photographs in each claim beginning on Feb 20.  This is an unfortunate change from previous rules that did limit registrations for published photos to 750/group, but registrations of unpublished photos could be unlimited in number.  Published and UNpublished continue to be required to be registered separately from each other, which is unchanged from the past.

Fortunately, there are several positive changes to the new rules including the ability to register images from a single author (not a single photographer, as before) in a single group resgistration which will benefit large studio shooters or perhaps wedding/event photographers who employ multiple photographers, often in a WFH capacity.  Also, the new rules clarify that every image in a group registration receives the same protection and has the same remedies as would be available if every image was separately registered – thereby providing the copyright owner with the ability to seek multiple awards of statutory damages, as opposed to the single award provided compilations (collective works, databases, etc).  This has resolved a loophole that infringers have used in the past to limit, even eliminate, their exposure to damages.

Complete information can be found on the Advocacy page of the APA National website here.  In the meantime, plan to register as many of your unpublished images as possible in a single group resgistration prior to 2/20/18.

Call to Action - Support HR3945

Call to action is now - support the creative community 

Please ask your representative to cosponsor the CASE Act  - #H.R.3935
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