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I wanted to ask what is fastest and safest way to register a manuscript? There are a lot of Websites that offer registering books. I'm really confused and don't know which one to trust, besides registering a manuscript on some of those websites takes months. Could you please guide me through it?

Best regards

  • I have a feeling this question will be put on hold for "unclear what you're asking," or something to that effect. I would have a rather difficult time answering this. – B.fox Jun 15 '18 at 12:45
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    Could you tell us where you are? Laws vary from place to place. Also, could you say what you want to accomplish by registering your manuscript? (See this comment: "By law, everything you write is copyrighted the instant you write it.") – Ken Mohnkern Jun 15 '18 at 12:54
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  • I'm from Iran but i can't register my book here. I wanted to know if people from other countries can register their works in Library of Congress’s Copyright Office? If not, is there any international department that register works through websites? – Reza Jun 18 '18 at 10:12
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    Welcome to Writing.SE! Please edit your question to include any clarification. Comments can theoretically be deleted at any point for any reason and are therefore not a good place to preserve potentially important information. Questions and answers on the other hand have an extensive revision history that everyone can check at any time. If you have a moment please take the tour and visit the help center to learn more about the site. Have fun and good luck with your project! – Secespitus Jun 19 '18 at 11:33
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In the United States, the best way to register a copyright on any kind of work (including literary works), is through the Library of Congress Copyright Office.

As of June 2018, registration of a manuscript costs $35 and can be done online directly by uploading a copy of your manuscript. Processing times will vary depending on the method used, but range from several months at least.

The Copyright Office’s FAQ provides some helpful information:

When is my work protected?
Your work is under copyright protection the moment it is created and fixed in a tangible form that it is perceptible either directly or with the aid of a machine or device.

Do I have to register with your office to be protected?
No. In general, registration is voluntary. Copyright exists from the moment the work is created. You will have to register, however, if you wish to bring a lawsuit for infringement of a U.S. work.

Why should I register my work if copyright protection is automatic?
Registration is recommended for a number of reasons. Many choose to register their works because they wish to have the facts of their copyright on the public record and have a certificate of registration. Registered works may be eligible for statutory damages and attorney’s fees in successful litigation. Finally, if registration occurs within five years of publication, it is considered prima facie evidence in a court of law.

I’ve heard about a “poor man’s copyright.” What is it?
The practice of sending a copy of your own work to yourself is sometimes called a “poor man’s copyright.” There is no provision in the copyright law regarding any such type of protection, and it is not a substitute for registration.

Is my copyright good in other countries?
The United States has copyright relations with most countries throughout the world, and as a result of these agreements, we honor each other’s citizens’ copyrights. However, the United States does not have such copyright relationships with every country.

Can foreigners register their works in the United States?
Any work that is protected by U.S. copyright law can be registered. This includes many works of foreign origin. All works that are unpublished, regardless of the nationality of the author, are protected in the United States. Works that are first published in the United States or in a country with which we have a copyright treaty or that are created by a citizen or domiciliary of a country with which we have a copyright treaty are also protected and may therefore be registered with the U.S. Copyright Office.

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