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Welcome to SongRegistration.com... The Low Cost Way to Protect Your Music & Establish Your Copyright

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
about protecting and copyrighting your songs


For general information only.  NOT offered as legal advice.  Consult an attorney for that!


-------- Quick Basics --------

A. How to
     Copyright
B. Processing Time,
Total Cost
 


-------- 10 Most Asked Questions --------
 
* Some answers do not apply to our Unlimited Submissions Program

Your browser is blocking the answers below, so CLICK HERE to see them.
1. How does SongRegistration.com™ protect my songs?   (And is this a scam?)

SongRegistration.com™ provides evidence of your copyright for the protection of songwriters, music publishers and their work.

It's easy, fast, convenient and you can register online.

  A. YOU receive:

        •  Time-stamped Affidavit of Registered Songs

        •  Dated proof of composer information

        •  Dated proof of song content received

B. WE retain your evidence of copyright:

        •   Your songs (dated song content)

        •   Dated copies of all registration documents

[securing your actual copyright is an automatic process — see answer #4]

And is this all some sort of scam?   ABSOLUTELY NOT!   To read more about this, CLICK HERE!
2. What about just sending a copy of my song to myself?

Commonly called the "poor man's copyright," DO NOT RELY ON THIS METHOD!

NO known court case has EVER recognized this technique (mailing a copy to yourself or a friend, then trying to use the postmark or certification as proof) since it's unreliable, too easy to tamper with, and you – and your friends – are BIASED witnesses!

Just ask yourself this:  What proof sounds more persuasive in a copyright battle:  An envelope allegedly kept by YOU or your FRIENDS? Or the unbiased, sworn declaration and physical evidence prepared and maintained by an independent company recognized worldwide as in the business of registering music specifically for copyright verification?

(To read more about the Poor Man's Copyright Myth, click here.)

3. Please explain the whole SongRegistration.com™ registration process
                      (and how I "upload" my songs -- or can I MAIL them instead).

It's all done in 3 simple steps (by clicking the "Register Your Songs" button):

    Step 1: You list your titles and composer information.

    Step 2: You pay the $29.95 registration fee for up to 4 songs (we accept PayPal, credit cards or you can mail a check).

    Step 3: You use our Instant Uploader to browse your computer for your song files, then click a button to send copies of them to us (or you can send them as email attachments).

Your song files can be in most any file format, as long as the words and music can be understood.   You can send audio files (playing/singing the song), picture files (scanning sheet music or words), or text files (of the words and/or music).   (Click here for sample formats.)

[Of course, we can only register what you submit!  For instance, if you only send lyrics - without music - we can only provide proof for those lyrics, not the music; if you send only music or chords, we can only attest to that, etc.]

NOTE: If you upload or mail us AUDIO files, and if you can hear the lyrics in those files, YOU DO NOT NEED TO UPLOAD OR MAIL SEPARATE WRITTEN LYRICS AS WELL.

And that's it!   Once received, we send you all necessary proof of your dated submissions and retain redundant offline copies in multiple, secure locations (see Answer #8 for exactly what you receive).

And if you'd rather just MAIL everything to us instead (and you live in the U.S.), CLICK HERE
 

**** For how to register songs from a CD, click here! ****

4. Is registering with the U.S. Copyright Office necessary for copyright
                      protection?   Do you file anything there?   If not, then why does
                      anyone bother doing it?

No and no!  Contrary to what many composers think, securing copyright protection does NOT require registering with the Copyright Office (or with SongRegistration.com™, for that matter)!

Securing your copyright itself is an automatic process.  Copyright protection attaches as soon as original material is first put into physical form and no U.S. government agency "grants" you a copyright!

It's proving that automatic copyright that's critical (by making a dated public record of it).   The Copyright Office makes this clear — that registration there is NOT necessary for copyright protection (also see answer #10).

As for why you may also wish to register with the Copyright Office even if it's not necessary for copyright protection, a primary reason is that it's required if you ever actually need to file a lawsuit against your infringer in federal court.  (Note: You still have copyright protection WITHOUT registering with the Copyright Office — and we always maintain the evidence of that for you — you only need to register with the Copyright Office before actually FILING your infringement lawsuit for a particular song that already has copyright protection.)

There are also certain statutory advantages regarding fees, injunctive relief and burdens of proof that make federal registration a definite consideration (and why we encourage it)!

These and other reasons to also register with the Copyright Office are described in the Copyright Office's publication "Copyright Basics" (linked in answer 10 below) — and a few are discussed in our free Copyright Info Packet — but NONE of them involves actually "granting a copyright" to you since, as already mentioned, you do NOT get copyright protection that way!

(Your copyrights are registered with us independently, on our secure servers, NOT with the Copyright Office/Library of Congress.)

5. Can I register my compositions with SongRegistration.com™ now
                      (to help me immediately protect them) and then later also register
                      them with the U.S. Copyright Office?

Absolutely!   In fact, we encourage you to do just that (both as a prerequisite to the filing of an actual infringement lawsuit in federal court and for the statutory benefits of such federal registration).  This, supplemented with the proof provided by SongRegistration.com™, offers the best protection — especially for particular songs determined to merit the extra effort, as well as for showing that your material was in physical form even BEFORE federal registration was filed!

But registration with the Copyright Office is NOT a condition of copyright protection and no such registration is required to secure copyright!  The key to such protection is who put the material into tangible (physical) form first.  And the dated material we maintain for you is specifically intended for that purpose!

So if your budget is tight — and you don't want to wait or deal with the formal registration process with the Copyright Office right now — at least register your songs with SongRegistration.com™ as soon as possible!

[To read more about the timing of a Copyright Office registration and other details of federal registration, see "Copyright Basics" linked in answer #10 and/or speak with a knowledgeable copyright attorney in your area.]

6. Ok, how much does it really cost PER SONG (and what's the catch)?

You can register up to 4 songs* for a one-time, total fee of just $29.95!   That's less than $7.50 a song if you register 4 songs!   No catches, no strings, no "membership fees," no annual or future costs.  EVER.

Of course, you can always register more than 4 songs.   And your total fee will never be more than $29.95 per "batch" (which is 1 to 4 songs submitted at the same time).

[For BULK registrations), CLICK HERE.]

* The only thing to remember is that, in order to receive this single $29.95 fee, we must be able to process all your songs (up to 4) AT THE SAME TIME (in other words, you must list and upload them together -- you can't submit one now, then a couple more a few days or weeks later).

Once we issue your Affidavit, the single fee is then used.

This is because once we process the songs you submit, for legal reasons no changes or additions can be made to your Affidavit AFTER the date we issue it (so we can attest to the fact that your submitted songs are exactly as they were when we issued your Affidavit).

So any new songs, or new versions, that are submitted later, must be re-registered with a new Affidavit and new registration fee.
7. What if someone claims I gave away or sold the rights to my song?
                      Can SongRegistration.com™ help with such disputes?

No (and neither can the Copyright Office).   We can only help you prove when the song was submitted and its contents.   If you sell or assign the rights to your song to someone else -- or work for someone who by the employment contract owns whatever you compose while so employed -- that requires a separate contract agreement.   Whoever claims ownership or transfer rights (from you) to the song would be required to show evidence of such a contract.   We obviously can't help you prove anything about any separate contracts or agreements you may have.

8. What if SongRegistration.com™ goes out of business?

First, we are one of the largest and most trusted names in independent music registration in the world, so we intend to continue providing the music community with copyright registration services over the years just as we've been doing!

Also, we have a proven track record for maintaining quality legal and professional websites over the past 15+ years, since the very earliest stages of the Internet (to read more about our credentials click here).  Plus our parent company has been in business for more than 35 years in Southern California (with an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau during that entire time).

In fact, SongRegistration.com™ has grown beyond all projections in both popularity and worldwide numbers of registered composers and music publishers every single year since its inception!

And the reason is simple:  We serve a critical function within the music industry and offer our clients excellent service and security, at a very reasonable price.   And we intend to continue meeting the needs of our worldwide clientele as the music industry continues its transformation.

But regardless, once you register your songs, we provide you with all registration documents verifying your submitted material and information. Also, our archives are independently maintained through servers and storage facilities in three redundant and geographically-separate locations (including secure cloud services provided by Amazon AWS/S3, which provides these same services to most of the top Fortune 500 corporations) and will always remain accessible for the legal needs of our registrars.

9. Are my copyrights good in other countries?

Yes. Although there's no such thing as an "international copyright" and each country's own copyright laws prevail in that country, most countries in the civilized world have treaties with each other regarding mutual copyright protection. For a list of these countries, here are two links:

10. Are you sure about all this?   How can I read about copyright laws on my own?

Since this information is not intended to serve as legal advice of any kind, and since you should NEVER accept any general statements about legal issues (especially ones read on the Internet) as definitive statements of law, we definitely encourage you to NOT take our word for it and instead read the actual federal copyright laws!

Here are actual excerpts from the Copyright Office's main publication:

 
From the Library of Congress'
Copyright Basics
 
 
Bottom of page 3:

"The way in which copyright protection is secured is frequently misunderstood.   No...registration or other action in the Copyright Office is required to secure copyright."
 
Page 7 (first full paragraph):

"Registration [with the Copyright Office] is not a condition of copyright protection."

The above publication clarifies what registering with the Copyright Office does — and does not — do (and why we do not file anything with the Copyright Office), so do read it thoroughly!  

As it explains, registering with the Copyright Office does not "grant" you a copyright or copyright protection.  Rather, it makes a record of your "automatic" copyright, similar to what SongRegistration.com™ does.   Click here to access the Copyright Office's publication.

We also encourage you to check with an attorney knowledgeable in copyright and intellectual property law if you have any questions or concerns about any aspect of copyright law!


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TERMS OF USE / DISCLAIMER NOTICE

I acknowledge that I have read all of the Frequently Asked Questions (above), incorporated herein by reference, and understand SongRegistration.com™'s role in the registration of my music. I also warrant that I am at least 18 years of age and that I have the right to enter into this agreement by agreeing to these terms of use. I further warrant and represent that no content (including but not limited to any musical recordings, compositions, lyrics, material, ideas or other property furnished by me or contained in or used in connection with any content) provided by me will violate any law or infringe upon any common law or statutory right of any person or entity.

I understand that SongRegistration.com™ is an independent company in the business of documenting and memorializing the submission dates and content of music. It is not affiliated with the U.S. Copyright Office, nor does it register any submissions there. Nothing in this site should be construed as offering legal advice or representation. Although registration with the U.S. Copyright Office does NOT "copyright" material, I understand it is required before filing an infringement suit or collecting or claiming certain types of damages, fees, injunctive relief and burdens of proof. There may be other reasons to consider federal registration. See Answer #10 in our frequently asked questions section (above) for a link to the Copyright Office's literature on this subject and other information on copyright.

Services Provided:
I understand that this service, as further explained in the frequently asked questions and answers above and our free copyright info kit, does NOT involve registration with the U.S. Copyright Office, is not in and of itself a formal copyright (but rather provides evidence of when the material was submitted), does not necessarily establish copyright and does not provide statutory protections. I understand that registering and uploading my composition(s) with SongRegistration.com™ is SOLELY for the purpose of establishing the submission date of material submitted by documenting the person or entity submitting the material, the date submitted and what the content of that submitted material was. I also understand that in the event of a copyright dispute, you will - at my request - send certified copies of my uploaded song(s) directly to the appropriate Court of Record, or someone else I designate, along with all supporting registration documentation, although SongRegistration.com™ does not guarantee that the documentation it provides users will be considered evidence by a court of law.

Services NOT Provided:
I understand that SONGREGISTRATION.COM™ DOES NOT OFFER LEGAL ADVICE OR LEGAL SERVICES OF ANY KIND, NOR PROTECTION AGAINST CLAIMS OF WHETHER THE MATERIAL SUBMITTED WAS LEGALLY ASSIGNED TO A THIRD PARTY, OR WHETHER THE MATERIAL WAS COMPOSED EARLIER THAN ITS SUBMISSION TO SONGREGISTRATION.COM™, OR THE IDENTITY OF THE SUBMITTER (and since SongRegistration.com™ obviously cannot identify the submitter, I understand that any request for access to the submission by the submitter must be accompanied by a copy of my Affidavit of Registered Songs or other reasonable proof that I am in fact the party who submitted the material). I also understand that SongRegistration.com™ does not file anything with the Copyright Office or Library of Congress. Also, since SongRegistration.com™ does not physically listen to, or monitor, files I upload - but rather only checks that they are submitted in the proper format - I understand the physical integrity or "usability" of files uploaded is not verified nor warranted by SongRegistration.com™. Further, that SongRegistration.com™ can only register what I submit; so if I only submit lyrics without music, SongRegistration.com™ can only provide proof of those lyrics, not the music; likewise, if I only submit music or just chords, SongRegistration.com™ can only attest to that and nothing more. Further, that if I submit a CD or other audio file with lyrics on it AND I also submit a separate lyrics sheet, SongRegistration™ may at its option archive the audio file only in lieu of the lyrics sheet. I further understand that, SHOULD I SEEK LEGAL ADVICE OR SERVICES REGARDING COPYRIGHT LAW, I MUST DO SO ON MY OWN THROUGH AN ATTORNEY DULY LICENSED IN THE STATE OR COUNTRY WHERE I RESIDE.

Encouragement to Register with the U.S. Copyright Office (in addition to registering with us):
I understand that SongRegistration.com™ is NOT filing anything with the U.S. Copyright Office in my behalf. I also understand that timely registration with the U.S. Copyright Office is "prima facie" evidence of copyright and must be done before filing an actual infringement action, or seeking statutory damages, and that SongRegistration.com™ encourages all composers and publishers to do so.

Indemnification:
By submitting my composition(s) to SongRegistration.com™, I agree to hold harmless and indemnify SongRegistration.com™, and its owners, from and against any third party claims arising from or in any way related to use of SongRegistration.com's services, including any liability or expense arising from all claims, losses, damages (actual and consequential), suits, judgments, litigation costs and attorneys' fees, of every kind and nature. In such case, SongRegistration.com™ will provide me with written notice of such claim, suit or action. I understand that SongRegistration.com™'s sole obligation under this agreement is to provide evidence of the date of submission, name of the submitter as listed on the submission form and the contents of submitted material as provided by the submitter, and NOTHING ELSE.

Storage of Submitted Material:
I understand that in the unlikely event any submission of mine was lost or otherwise damaged due to your failure to exercise reasonable care or any other cause whatsoever, I agree and understand that the liquidated damages for said loss is limited to, and shall be, my original registration fee. I also understand that "lifetime" and "for life" in the context of my registration means the life of the company, SongRegistration.com, although in the unlikely event of the company's cessation of business all efforts will be made by the company to use its best efforts to provide contingency means to ensure that, where reasonably practicable, agents are identified to fulfill existing registrations, but no claim or guarantee is made regarding the realization of such measures.

Promotion, Jurisdiction and Miscellaneous Terms:
Should SongRegistration.com™ engage in any program intended to promote registered songs, I hereby authorize SongRegistration.com™ to display and play my registered song(s) in any media, as long as (a) it is for promotional purposes only, (b) SongRegistration.com™ receives no direct compensation for said display/play (except from me) and (c) full credit and/or contact access is given showing me as Registrar of said song(s).

I also agree that these Terms of Use shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the State of California, without giving effect to its conflict of laws provisions or my actual state or country of residence. Any claims, legal proceedings or litigation arising in connection with SongRegistration.com's services will be brought solely in San Diego County, California, USA, and I consent to binding arbitration, and only as an individual rather than member of any class, as the sole means for resolution of any disputes. I understand and have been advised to always consult with an attorney in my area and/or the U.S. Copyright Office (https://www.copyright.gov) for questions about copyright law, statements found on this site or services being offered, before agreeing to these terms, as the statements made on this site and in related information prepared by SongRegistration.com and/or its owners are solely opinion and not intended to represent legal advice or the legal interpretation of copyright law.

Note: By submitting my songs, I acknowledge reading and accepting these "Terms of Use" described above.

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© Copyright 2008 - SongRegistration.com - All rights reserved.      * SongRegistration.com™ does not provide legal advice or legal services and registers all songs in its own archives, thereby preserving a dated, fixed record of their tangible form.  It is not affiliated, nor registers material, with the Copyright Office, Library of Congress, or any government agency (as this is not required to secure copyright protection).  By using this site, you agree to all Terms of Use stated herein.    For address information, Click Here.