World Intellectual Property Organization

WIPO Second Survey on Voluntary Registration and Deposit Systems

The Thematic Project on Intellectual Property and the Public Domain (CDIP/4/3) (“the Thematic Project”), approved in principle by the WIPO Committee on Development and Intellectual Property (CDIP), begins implementation of Recommendations 161 and 202 of the Development Agenda in respect of copyright and related rights. The Project provides inter alia for the elaboration of a Second Survey on Voluntary Registration and Deposit Systems under copyright (“the Survey”).

The Survey builds on an earlier Survey of National Legislation on Voluntary Registration Systems for Copyright and Related Rights, carried out by the WIPO Secretariat based on a questionnaire and presented to the Member States at the Thirteenth Session of the Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (SCCR) in November 2005 (SCCR/13/2). The new survey will examine not only registration systems but also deposit systems. It will expand on the 2005 Survey in at least four different respects, namely,

(i) enable scrutiny of the operational requirements for voluntary registration/deposit systems in the digital environment and available search tools;

(ii) include information on how Member States with voluntary registration systems address the issue of orphan works in those systems;

(iii) solicit information on recorded/registered public domain subject matter; and

(iv) attempt to include all Member States.

The identification of subject matter that has fallen into the public domain, and preventing subject matter that is the public domain from individual appropriation, is an objective of a number of activities included in the Thematic Project. The attached questionnaire broadens the scope of the earlier survey in several respects, for example by including questions on legal deposit, the availability of specific registration and search tools for the digital environment, and on specific measures, if any, in relation to orphan works and public domain material.

The questionnaire, which is available in print form [PDF] [DOC] was sent to all Member States of WIPO. At the deadline for submissions (June 30, 2010), the WIPO Secretariat had received 80 responses from Member States. A list of contact details for all Registration and Deposit Systems, some of which are accessible on line, is available [PDF].

Based on the Member States responses to the Questionnaire, WIPO Secretariat prepared a series of documents that are divided into the two parts: Registration (Summary, Tables and Charts) and Legal Deposit (Summary, Tables and Charts). Such documents provide easy access to the information provided by the Member States and that illustrate the actual state of the registration and deposit systems around the world.

Further information may be requested from the International Bureau, Culture and Creative Industries Sector, WIPO, by post:

34, chemin des Colombettes
1211 Geneva 20
Switzerland;

by facsimile: +41 22 3389070;
or by e-mail: copyright.mail@wipo.int.


1. Recommendation 16: Consider the preservation of the public domain within WIPO’s normative processes and deepen the analysis of the implications and benefits of a rich and accessible public domain.
2. Recommendation 20: To promote norm setting activities related to IP that support a robust public domain in WIPO’s Member States, including the possibility of preparing guidelines which could assist interested Member States in identifying subject matters that have fallen into the public domain within their respective jurisdictions.

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