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338 (1941); King Features Syndicate v. Bouvé, Register of Copyrights, 48 USPQ 237 (1940); Patterson v. Century Productions, Inc., 35 USPQ 471 (CCA 2, 1937). However, as remarked by the Supreme Court in United States v. Graham, 110 U.S. at p. 221 (1884), where there is ambiguity or doubt in a statute, "a long-continued construction of it in practice by a department of the Government would be in the highest degree persuasive, if not absolutely controlling in its effect." Certificate of Registration (Section 55)
The certificate of registration "shall be admitted in any court as prima facie evidence of the facts stated therein”, as provided in the fourth sentence of section 55. Obviously it can be no more than "prima facie" evidence, because the "facts” alleged are ex parte, being furnished by the applicant himself. Nevertheless, the certificate carries with it a presumption of regularity, and it is for the defendant to show anything to the contrary. Pizzano v. Knowles, 49 USPQ 140 (1941). Copyright Fees (Section 61)
Section 61 prescribes the fees to be paid for the services of the Copyright Office designated therein. These fees were increased by the amendatory Act effective July 1, 1928 (70th Cong. 1st Sess.), to keep pace with the growing expense of administration. But in the case of commercial prints and labels, the statutory fees are governed by the amendatory Act of July 31, 1939, effective July 1, 1940, already referred to in Chapter III, page 33.
International Copyright Relations
Copyright relations with foreign countries are established under the provisions of section 8 of the Copyright Act, which reaffirms the policy laid down in the Act of 1891 (26 St. L., pp. 1106-10, sec. 13), to the effect that the United States demands a quid pro quo for the extension of the copyright privilege to the nationals of any foreign state or nation who are not domiciled here.
Section 8 provides for such extension when the other country either (A) grants by treaty, convention, agreement or law substantially similar protection to citizens of the United States, or (B) is a party to an international copyright agreement to which the United States is also a party. The President is empowered to determine whether or not conditions are ripe for the extension of the privilege. Action on his part is usually brought about through diplomatic channels upon the initiative of the country seeking protection for its nationals, and the existence of the necessary reciprocal conditions is signified by a formal proclamation.
General proclamations have been so far issued in favor of some 36 countries and their possessions. (See list in Appendix.) For the extension of mechanical musical rights under section 1(e), special proclamations are necessary, except where the original general proclamation covered these rights also, as in the case of Argentina. 29 Opp. Att. Gen. 64. So far such proclamations have been issued in favor of 29 countries. (See Appendix.)
All of these “proclaimed” countries (except some of the LatinAmerican) come within category (A), Germany, Hungary, China, and Japan through treaty, the others through diplomatic negotiation. The effect of these various proclamations is merely to make known officially that the nationals of the several countries affected may, from a given date, secure copyright protection for their works in the United States by complying with the provisions of the copyright laws of the United States, and vice versa, American authors and publishers must comply with the local laws in force in the country where protection is sought.* Hence such proclamations fall far short of establishing unqualified reciprocity in the copyright sphere. Berne Convention
On the other hand, the Berne Convention (revised at Rome in 1928) extends protection not only to the members of the Union established thereunder, but also to the citizens of nonUnion countries on the sole condition of publishing their works for the first time in a Union country (or simultaneously with publication elsewhere). If, therefore, an American author or publisher takes the precaution to effect such publication in any one of the countries belonging to the Union (e.g., United Kingdom, Canada, or other self-governing dominion), he thereby becomes assimilated to the status of a national of the country where the publication took place, and enjoys in the other countries of the Union all the rights accorded by the Convention (Article 6). In this way he avoids the necessity of complying with any conditions that may be prescribed by the laws of the other countries members of the Union.
The Convention defines "published works" as works copies of which have been issued to the public ("oeuvres editées"), expressly excluding the performance of dramatic or musical works, the exhibition of a work of art and the construction of a work of architecture (Article 4, sec. 4). The British Copyright Act (1911, 1 and 2 Geo. 5, Ch. 46), defines publication in a similar manner, but requires that the publication shall not be "colourable only and not intended to satisfy the reasonable requirements of the public" (sec. 35, subs. 3). United Kingdom of Great Britain
The British Act further provides that a work shall be deemed to have been published “simultaneously” in two places if the time between the publication in one such place and in the other
Section 8 was amended by Act of Congress approved September 25, 1941,
as to preserve the rights of foreign authors and proprietors who, during the present "emergency”, are or may have been unable to comply with the conditions and formalities prescribed by the copyright laws of the United States, because of disruption or suspension of facilities essential for such compliance. The application of this amendment is conditioned upon reciprocal treatment of American authors and copyright proprietors by the country concerned. (Public No. 258, 77th Cong.)
place does not exceed 14 days (sec. 35, subs. 3). But note well that this provision applies only for the purpose of securing copyright protection in the United Kingdom and other parts of the Empire to which the Act extends. It cannot be taken advantage of where protection is also sought under the Berne Convention, to accomplish which the work must be actually published there for the first time or simultaneously in fact.
The British Act requires the publisher of every book published in the United Kingdom to deliver a copy thereof to the trustees of the British Museum within one month after publication; also to certain other designated libraries if written demand therefor is made within twelve months after publication. The term "book” here includes every part or division of a book, pamphlet, sheet of letter-press, sheet of music, map, plan, chart or table separately published; as well as new editions containing additions or alterations either in the letter-press or in the maps, prints, or other engravings belonging thereto (sec. 15).
This requirement of deposit is not made a condition for securing copyright protection, but failure to comply may subject the publisher to a fine.
By a British Order in Council, effective since January 1, 1915, copyright protection in Great Britain was extended to the unpublished works of citizens of the United States, subject only "to the accomplishment of the conditions and formalities prescribed by the law of the United States", which would seem to make it apply only to works duly registered under section 11 of our Act. This Order is embodied in the corresponding proclamation of the President of the United States of the same date (see Appendix). If such works are subsequently published, then in order to continue the protection it is necessary to comply with the British Act the same as if the work had been published in the first instance. (See Note from the Foreign Office printed at the end of the proclamation, in Appendix.) Canada
By virtue of a proclamation of the President issued July 1, 1891 (27 St. L. 981), under authority of the Act of 1891, the privilege of securing copyright in the United States was for the first time extended to citizens of "Great Britain and the British Possessions", which included Canada. This was issued upon “satisfactory official assurance” being given that the law of Great Britain and her possessions permitted to citizens of the United States the benefit of copyright on substantially the same basis as to their own citizens.
The British law in force throughout the Empire at that time was the Copyright Act of 1842, which granted protection to any author of any country who should publish his work first or simultaneously in Great Britain or any British possession. Moreover, Great Britain had adhered to the Berne Convention of 1886, which had the force of law in Canada by virtue of an Imperial Order in Council made in 1887. Hubert v. Mary, 15 K.B.R. Quebec, 381 (1906).
American authors and publishers were thus enabled to secure copyright protection for their books in Canada by the indirect route of first publication in Great Britain, without regard to the provisions of the Canadian Copyright Act of 1875 requiring books to be printed or reprinted in Canada.
As a result of important amendments embodied in the Berne Convention at Berlin in 1908, it became necessary for the British Parliament to enact new legislation, and the opportunity was seized to deal with the whole copyright problem afresh, with a view to placing the law on a systematic and uniform basis. It was recognized that the matter was of imperial concern, and arrangements were accordingly made for a special conference to include representatives from all the self-governing dominions, which met in 1910 at the Foreign Office in London.
At this Conference the Canadian delegate, Hon. Sydney Fisher, declared that Canada was under peculiar circumstances with respect to copyright, owing to the proximity of the United States and the fact that the literature of the two countries was similar, in consequence of which it was necessary to be a little more careful in regard to the provisions of copyright law in Canada than in any other country. He urged that Canada should be given absolute freedom to deal with the copyright problem as she might see fit. (H. C. Debates, Canada, Sess. 1910-11, Vol. IV, p. 7807, Vol. V, p. 8895).
His views met with approval and were given substantial recognition in the recommendations submitted to Parliament in the Conference Report, in consequence of which the ensuing British Copyright Act of 1911 (effective July 1, 1912) opened the way to complete copyright autonomy on the part of Canada or any