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When Should You Copyright A Song?

When Should You Copyright A Song?

Your biggest first question when you’re considering a copyright is: “Do you need to spend the money?”

Remember, as soon as you write the song, or, according to BMI, “fix” it in final form, it’s technically copyrighted.

What you’re really doing with the copyright office is registering as the owner.

While there are several types of copyrights, we’ll focus on making a general investment decision.

 

When should you copyright a song?

 

Since it’s $55 for a song or group of songs written by the same person, a good rule of thumb is to maximize your spend.  If you’re the sole songwriter and publisher, you can register up to 35 songs for a single price of $55.

Now – that shouldn’t be the excuse you use for not co-writing!

You should probably make sure you’re either (1) playing the songs out, or putting them out there, or (2) have a group of songs you can bundle together before you spend the month.  If your songs are in a shoe box in your house, it’s unlikely they’ll be “stolen” and require you take any legal action.

And remember, coincidence is not theft. Titles and ideas can’t be copyrighted.  To be a legit “song” – you’ll need to create a complete work.

Ari Herstandt does a nice job of walking you through how to copyright your songs and some general background on how to group them up.

I’ve also included some links you can use for a little research on the subject:

 





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