Around 475,000 works are registered yearly only in the U.S. Copyright Office with fees from USD 35 to USD 55 per work. This number represents a very small fraction of the total works created in a year in the United States and much smaller in the World. Specially taking into account small original works which are not formally registered: amateur photos, blog and social media posts, open-source developments, graphic designs, music, videos, etc.
“Everyone has the right to the protection of the moral and material interests resulting from any scientific, literary or artistic production of which he is the author.”
— Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 27
“The copyright is a form of protection provided by the laws of a country for original works of authorship for several types of creative or intellectual creations, whether published or not. It does not extend to ideas, names or procedures among others.’’
— U.S. Copyright Office
Although a formal registration of a work is not required to the author in order to acquire its rights, having a trustworthy evidence is crucial to prove the authorship, in the practice, being the first to register the work. Engraved offers a solution to make copyright registration trustworthy and secure as it is based on the Ethereum blockchain.
“In general, copyright registration is a legal formality intended to make a public record of the basic facts of a particular copyright.’’
— U.S. Copyright Office
Authorship rights are reflected in many international and regional legal agreements. Most of the countries do not require formal registration to establish copyright in any completed work. The Berne Convention enforces a requirement that countries recognize copyrights of works held by the citizens of all other parties to the convention. It constitutes the most important international copyright-related treaty with 172 parties. The works are protected by the own legislation of every party with minimum requirements but with variations. For instance, the time a work is protected after death oscillates between 50 a 70 years.
“The enjoyment and the exercise of these rights shall not be subject to any formality; such enjoyment and such exercise shall be independent of the existence of protection in the country of origin of the work. Consequently, apart from the provisions of this Convention, the extent of protection, as well as the means of redress afforded to the author to protect his rights, shall be governed exclusively by the laws of the country where protection is claimed.’’
— Berne Convention