6.) If you are not the one writing the song lyrics and melodies, you cannot claim ownership to the song copyright which is DIFFERENT from the sound recording copyright.
Contact the songwriters and have them file as separate Form PA (performance arts) to document the ownership of the song itself. Since you only own the sound recording, you will file Form SR (sound recording copyright form).
7.) If you are the song writer as well as the owner of the recording, filing the Form SR can let you claim ownership of both the song (lyrics and melodies) and the sound recording. This is a cost effective approach since you are only applying one copyright application to protect two rights (right to claim ownership of the song and the sound recording).
Of course if you want the best protection of your rights, then applying two copyright application for sound recording and song makes sense if budget is not your issue.
Some question from the readers:
“When filling out a US sound recording copyright application from copyright office, it takes four and a half months to receive a certificate, what are some of the ways that one could receive a certificate sooner, legally and at what cost. And what form of protection or certificate would be accepted by iTunes or it’s partners. Thank You”
Your first question: “What are some of the ways that one could receive a certificate sooner, legally and at what cost”
Answer: There is no other way that you could receive the copyright certificate sooner which itself is a legal proof of your sound recording copyright ownership. But, once your copyright application package, for example, your CD or MP3 is successfully uploaded or arrive at the copyright office, this is date where the copyright registration officially starts.
The best evidence you can claim ownership can be seen after two months where the copyright office starts publishing your records online. You can then search for it and look for the copyright registration number. This copyright registration number is your proof that the sound recording work is officially registered. 3 to 4 months after that, the copyright certificate will then arrive in your office/home.
Your second question: “And what form of protection or certificate would be accepted by iTunes or it’s partners”
Answer: You can either provide the copyright registration number if the copyright certificate is on its way. Or print the online catalog results of your work from US copyright website. I am not sure what iTunes or its partners require presently to their publishers, you can contact them for details.
You can submit your work online for copyright protection here and you can search if your work appears online after one to two months using this tool, click “search the catalog”- type your surname in “search for” and then “search by keyword”. Click “Begin search” for the results.
Content last updated on July 29, 2012