In January 2018, the U.S. Copyright Office upgraded the electronic registration system www.copyright.gov by adding the ISAN unique identifier to the “International Standard Number” menu on the Publication / Completion screen.
When provided, the ISAN number will appear on the certificate of registration and may be used to identify the specific work that was submitted for registration.
On January 17, 2018, the Office published a final rule amending the Office’s deposit requirements for certain types of literary works and musical compositions. In its notice of proposed rulemaking, the Office noted that if applicants want to ensure that the U.S. Copyright Office retains a precise record of what was submitted for registration, they are encouraged to include an international standard number in the application if one has been assigned to the work. See Simplifying Deposit Requirements for Certain Literary Works and Musical Compositions, 82 Fed. Reg. 38,859 (Aug. 16, 2017).
In the past, the online application only included the identifiers for ISBN , ISSN, and ISRC. The technical upgrade delivered in January 2018 enhances the online application by adding the ISAN as well as the ISMN, ISWC and ISTC.
How to provide the ISAN in the declaration?
When completing the Publication / Completion screen in the online application, applicants may select the appropriate prefix (i.e. ISAN) from the drop down menu marked “International Standard Number Type” and provide the ISAN number in the field marked “International Standard Number.”
Important Note: The full representation of an ISAN number contains 38 characters but the electronic registration system can only accept standard numbers that contain 30 characters or less.
When entering the ISAN in the application do only enter the ISAN in its 16 digits representation (without version segment that is useless here) and without the ISAN prefix (learn more on the structure of the ISAN):
- Correct: 1234-5678-9ABC-0000-X
- Incorrect: ISAN 1234-5678-9ABC-0000-X
- Incorrect: 1234-5678-9ABC-0000-X -0000-0000-Y
- Incorrect: ISAN 1234-5678-9ABC-0000-X -0000-0000-Y
If you enter the full representation of the ISAN number in the “international standard number” field instead of above 16 digit recommended ISAN representation, at least some portion of the ISAN number will be cut off when your claim is received by the Copyright Office.
Applicants should note, however, that the U.S. Copyright Office will not review the ISAN to determine if it matches the number appearing on the deposit copy(ies). Therefore, applicants should confirm that the ISAN has been entered correctly.