Formalities of Copyright: Publication, Notice, Registration and Deposit
principlesCopyright may inhere as a natural right, as under English common law before the statute of Anne, without record or formalities, but also without statutory protection; or formalities may be required only as a prerequisite to protection by actions at law; or formalities may be required to validate and secure the copyright. English formalities belong to the second class. American formalities are of the third class, and without them copyright does not exist.
requirementsThe American copyright law of 1909 prescribesexactly the method of securing copyright, and makes clear the cases in which non-compliance invalidates copyright. Previous to 1909 copyright was secured by complying exactly with the statutory requirements of (i) the delivery to the Librarian of Congress on or before the day of publication, in this or any foreign country, of a printed (including typewritten) copy of title or description of the work, (2) the insertion in every copy published of the prescribed copyright notice, and (3) the deposit not later (under the law of 1891) than such day of publication (earlier law allowing ten days after publication) of two copies of the best edition of a book or other article, or a photograph of a work of art (eis to date of deposit of which last the law was not explicit) ; and any failure to comply literally and exactly with these conditions forfeited the copyright.
The American code of 1909 substitutes an entirely different basis for securing copyright. Copyright