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Can you "replace" your own copyright?

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Can you "replace" your own copyright?

Postby bill555 » Mon Oct 09, 2017 2:32 am

Hypothetical but I can see this happening:

Say I write/record a song. I copyright it.

Down the road I decide to change it somewhat (the lyrics, the music, whatever), and I want that to be the one and only "official" (copyrighted) version. Can I submit a new copyright for that and have the copyright folks "delete" the old one, effectively replacing it?
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Re: Can you "replace" your own copyright?

Postby Scramble » Mon Oct 09, 2017 10:28 am

Copyright exists as soon as you write something. So both copyrights will exist.

But perhaps you are referring to the registration of copyright government service that exists in the US. That isn't the same thing as copyright, but in practical terms it is an important way to establish your copyright in the US. You could register your copyright to the later version of the song, even if you've already done it for the earlier version (you might have to use a new name, dunno about that). But I doubt that you could 'withdraw' the earlier registration.

That isn't a definitive opinion by any means, though. Here's the webpage for the US Copyright Office, see if you can find anything on it about withdrawing copyright:

I don't suppose it's something that happens much, though.

(If you're talking about the UK, there isn't any official copyright service, and there are no copyright 'folks' to delete anything.)
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Re: Can you "replace" your own copyright?

Postby Eazy360 » Mon Nov 20, 2017 3:58 pm

In which country are you located in? because what i know...under U.S. copyright law, changing or building on a copyrighted work is known as creating a derivative work and is something only the copyright owner legally may do.
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Re: Can you "replace" your own copyright?

Postby ken long » Tue Jan 09, 2018 4:26 pm

Eazy360 wrote: is something only the copyright owner legally may do.

Not if a license is agreed.

You can copyright the "new" version but it won't replace the old one. Once it's published, it's published. You can refrain from making it available but the different codes associated with different collection agencies will remain, as they should, to differentiate the recordings.
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Re: Can you "replace" your own copyright?

Postby radian » Tue Jan 09, 2018 10:52 pm

What you're asking about isn't copyright "replace"ment, but catalogue deletion.
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