"US Copyright Registry" Scam E-Mail Circulating

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Today my network operator got an interesting e-mail from the official-sounding "US Copyright Registry" implying that "If you disregard this notice or fail to reply.. the United States Patent and Trademark office will NOT be liable for infringement of your website, interruption of business activity or business losses."

This latest scheme seems intended to scare domain holders into thinking they need some additional services be paid to this official sounding company, selling "copyright registration" - likely charging you an arm and a leg to mail a form you could do yourself, which many people argue makes very little difference.

Sample e-mail text:
US Copyright Registry
244 Fifth Ave, Suite #2279
New York, NY 10001-7604
www.USCopyrightRegistry.com
support@USCopyrightRegistry.com
Toll Free: 1-877-292-7553

COPYRIGHT NOTICE

ATT: Network Operations

ADMINISTRATIVE CONTACT

blah@blah.com
Address: xxxx
Metairie xxx
Phone: (555)111-2222
www.YOURDOMAIN.COM Notice Tracking Number: CR2923642

Please be advised that the above noted website has not been protected and is now available for copyright registration

IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE UNITED STATES COPYRIGHT LAW

TITLE 92, Sec. 107 to 122, the owner of copyright under this title has the exclusive rights to do and to authorize any of the following: Rights of attribution and integrity: the author shall have the right to claim authorship of that work, and prevent the use of his or her name as the author of any work which he or she did not create.

Be advised: Protecting a website is the responsibility of the owner of the website and must be registered through the United States Patent and Trademark office to legally prevent others from infringing on the owners rights and copying a website. It is the responsibility of the website owner to complete registration to protect their intellectual property and bring suit in federal court for infringement and obtain statutory damages up to $150,000.

Domain name and trademark registration does not register your website for copyright registration and it is the responsibility of the website owner to register with the United States Patent and Trademark Office to complete registration Anyone who violates any of the exclusive rights of the website owners registered copyright as provided by sections 106 through 122 who infringes on the copyright registration may sued in federal court for infringement and obtain injunctions on such terms as it may be reasonable to prevent or restrain infringement. In the event of infringement, the infringer is liable for:

The website owners actual damages and any additional profits of the infringer, as provided by subsection (b); or statutory damages, as provided by subsection (c).

(b) Actual Damages And Profits. – The website owner of copyright is entitled to recover the actual damages suffered by him or her as a result of the infringement, and any profits of the infringer that are attributable to the infringement and are not taken into account in computing the actual damages. In establishing the infringer’s profits, the website owner of copyright is required to present proof only of the infringer’s gross revenue , and the infringer is required to prove his or her deductible expenses and the elements of profit attributable to factors other than the copyrighted work.

© Statutory Damages. – Except oas provided by clause, the website owner of the copyright may elect, at any time before final judgement is rendered, to recover, instead of actual damages and profits, an award of statutory damages for all infringements involved in the action, with respect to any one work, for which any one infringer is liable individually. registration by a third party, the UDRP may be applied under the following conditions.

You are required to advise the US Copyright Registry of your intent to license this website if registration is administered through the UCR as this is your final notice.

Note: you may disregard this notice. If you disregard this notice or fail to reply:
UCR and the United States Patent and Trademark office will NOT be liable for infringement of your website, interruption of business activity or business losses.


PLEASE READ CAREFULLY

If you fail to reply to this notice this website will NOT be registered through UCR to the United States Patent and Trademark Office. You must advise us of your intent to secure your website in order for registration to be completed through UCR.


Call 1-877-292-7553
Notice Tracking Number: 83736




For more info see Ten big myths about copyright.

If you want to do copyright yourself, it costs somewhere in the area of $35 and can be done online from the ACTUAL U.S. Copyright office web site.

 

Posted by Anonymous on 2008-03-12 13:25:30
i got the same email. Its definatly a scam. Dont pay for services your current provider doesnt say you already need.
Posted by Gliscameria on 2008-03-13 01:32:10
You don't need to register Copyrights/Trademarks. Everything you publish to any medium is automatically 'copywrited'. Registering helps build your case if you someone infringes, but that's about it.
 

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