Should I register my copyright? (weekly widget)

It is no longer necessary to register in order to have copyright protection, just as it is not required anymore to have the symbol (c) attached to a work in order to protect it. Copyright protection is automatic, starting as soon as a work is fixed in tangible form. But registration is still important in some situations. You must register a work before you can sue someone else for infringement, and registration creates a presumption that you own a valid copyright. Also, registration within certain time limits makes it possible to receive a larger damage award and attorney’s fees if a copyright owner can prove infringement. So registration is a good idea to protect the economic value of a work, but it is not required; each creator can make a decision about whether or not registration will best serve that individual’s interests.

Registration is accomplished by filing a form, found on the Copyright Office’s web site, along with a copy of the work being registered and a fee, which is currently $45.