Copyright: When to register work with the US Copyright Office.

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    Erin Barkman

    Hi David, 

    My observation is that the difference between the two questions is in the word "clear".  Please refer to pg 181-183 in the Architect's Handbook of Professional Practice to see specific details. 

    Basically, the architect automatically has a copyright on "original works of authorship fixed in a tangible medium of expression."  (which includes drawings, renderings, specs, etc...) This does not include procedure, processes, ideas and systems because they are supposedly intangible.  In the 1990s the Architectural Works Copyright Protection Act became effective which added "architectural works" to covered copyright law which included buildings.  There are some things like bridges that are not covered under this act. 

    Although the AWCP clearly states that architectural works are covered by copyright laws, I think the point of the first question (#19) is "clear copyright claims".  Although not required, it is recommended that architect's register their works with the US Copyright Office, which makes evidence of that copyright and "shifts the burden to prove invalidity to the defendant" when claiming copyright infringement. 

    Hope this helps! All the quotes and info are from the AHPP! 

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  • Avatar
    Erin Barkman

    Hi David, 

    My observation is that the difference between the two questions is in the word "clear".  Please refer to pg 181-183 in the Architect's Handbook of Professional Practice to see specific details. 

    Basically, the architect automatically has a copyright on "original works of authorship fixed in a tangible medium of expression."  (which includes drawings, renderings, specs, etc...) This does not include procedure, processes, ideas and systems because they are supposedly intangible.  In the 1990s the Architectural Works Copyright Protection Act became effective which added "architectural works" to covered copyright law which included buildings.  There are some things like bridges that are not covered under this act. 

    Although the AWCP clearly states that architectural works are covered by copyright laws, I think the point of the first question (#19) is "clear copyright claims".  Although not required, it is recommended that architect's register their works with the US Copyright Office, which makes evidence of that copyright and "shifts the burden to prove invalidity to the defendant" when claiming copyright infringement. 

    Hope this helps! All the quotes and info are from the AHPP! 

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    xixiao zhang

    I had the same question too!

    Thanks Erin for responding!

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    Paul Carson

    Yes thank Erin and David for the specifics.  I am curious, I own a "student" 13th edition of the AHPP; what edition are you both referring?

     

    Mine is found under "backgrounder"; Intellectual Property and the Architect. pg. 228-229.  Has anyone passed these exams by using the student book they recommended purchasing in Grad school?

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