How to Register a Copyright in Oregon


Copyright is the legal protection of original works of authorship. It applies to both published and unpublished works, as well as any forms of expression from graphic arts, literature, music, architecture, and computer code. As soon as an author creates a work they own the copyright in it. You don’t need to register your work to have copyright protection; however, registration can be useful if you want to sue someone for reproducing or adapting your work without permission (or preventing them from doing so).

Create a Tangible Expression of the Idea

To copyright work, you need to have a tangible version of it. In other words, your work must be fixed in some kind of concrete form before it can be registered. For example, if you write an essay on your computer and save it as a Word document or if you write in pen on paper and then scan the page into Photoshop, those are both original works that can be copyrighted—but they aren’t yet fixed in any tangible way until they are digitized.

Copy and Paste your Work into a Text Editor

  • Copy and paste your work into a text editor. Use text editors to copy, cut, and paste text that you want to save or share with others. There are many different types of text editors available online.
  • Ensure that the text editor you choose is compatible with Unicode encoding and can handle large files easily. Many free applications have limited functionality. Some will not even let users save their work in standard formats like .txt or .docx files. This means that if something goes wrong during transcription, there’s no way for us at Copyright Registration Services Incorporated®to help fix it – which means no registration for you.

Add in your Personal Information

Next, you will be asked to fill in your personal information. This includes your name, address, phone number, and email address. You will also be asked to enter a date of birth if you are not entering it automatically from your computer.

You must provide accurate information here because this is how others will be able to contact you in case they need any additional information or want the right to use some of the content on your website (or other work).

Copyright Registration makes it Easier to Sue for Infringement

In the event that a copyright infringement occurs and you want to sue for damages, registration of your work is key. One reason for this is that it makes it easier for you to get an injunction (or court order) against the infringer, preventing them from continuing their infringing activity. Another reason is that if you are successful in proving infringement, the court will award actual damages and costs (like attorney’s fees) on top of statutory damages. We strongly recommend registering your copyright before filing a lawsuit since this will make it much easier to prove your case and receive payment from whoever has infringed upon your copyright.

What to do in case of Infringement

If someone else uses one of your copyrighted images without permission or proper attribution, there are several options available:

1) send them a cease-and-desist letter.

2) give them permission but require acknowledgment.

3) refuse permission altogether.

4) hire an attorney and file suit against them.

Regardless of which option(s) sounds best, for now, remember: even if someone does something illegal with one photo today doesn’t mean they won’t do something illegal with another photo tomorrow–and sometimes lawsuits take years before resolution so patience may be key here too.

Use Copyright Registration as Evidence in Court

Copyright registration is a public record, meaning anyone can see your registration. If you are being sued for copyright infringement, the other party may use your registration as evidence to show that you were aware of the work and had an opportunity to object to it. It can also be used as evidence that you actually own the work in question, which may help your case if you’re suing for infringement.

However, keep in mind that just because someone claims they own something doesn’t mean they do. Even if someone has not registered their work with the Copyright Office (and many people don’t), it does not necessarily mean that the person does not own rights in the work or that he or she cannot sue for infringement on those rights—it just means that his or her claim will have less weight than one made by somebody who registered with the Copyright Office and proved ownership by demonstrating where he or she was when he/she created it.

It isn’t necessary to register every new version of a previously copyrighted work.

You don’t have to register every new version of a previously copyrighted work. For example, if you’re working on an electronic book and release the first version as an e-book, then later create a new version for print only and not for digital distribution, it isn’t necessary to register both versions with the U.S. Copyright Office. However, if you want to publish both versions online or in print format at any point in the future, then registering both versions would be ideal (and recommended).

Here are some reasons why it might be beneficial for you to register your copyright:

  • It’s free. If you don’t want to pay anyone else thousands of dollars upfront—or even hundreds per month—then this is definitely worth considering.
  • You’ll receive official documentation that proves ownership over it (and potentially be able to protect yourself from others using it without authorization).

Registering Copyright Reaffirms and Protects your Rights

It is the legal right of a copyright owner to control the reproduction and distribution of his or her work. In other words, if you create something that qualifies as your own intellectual property (an original literary, musical, or artistic work), then you can decide who gets to copy it and how.

While copyright protection lasts for the life of the author plus 70 years, it does not mean that once someone has registered their work with the U.S. Copyright Office they will never have any problems with unauthorized use of their material in future years. When registering a copyright in Oregon, though, it may be possible for an infringer to argue against remedies if they can show that they did not know about your registration at the time they violated your rights by using your material without permission or license from you.


Copyright registration is an important first step to protecting your work. The benefits of registering your copyright are many, including the ability to sue for infringement and provide evidence in court. However, there are some drawbacks to consider before filing with the U.S. Copyright Office. In general, it’s a good idea to register your copyrights if they are valuable enough that someone might steal them from you or use them without permission.

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