The U.S. Copyright Office has launched a website for the Copyright Claims Board – the first copyright small-claims tribunal in the United States.
The website will serve as a gateway to the CCB before the full opening of the board to users of copyrighted materials later this spring. The U.S. Copyright Office says the website is dedicated to helping everyone understand the mission and processes behind the Copyright Claims Board. Once the CCB starts hearing claims later this year, the website will be the primary location for information about filing and responding to claims, opting out of a proceeding, and accessing the CCB’s handbook.
The website will also host the CCB’s Designated Service Agent Directory, the list of libraries and archives that have pre-emptively opted out of CCB proceedings.
The CCB’s Designated Service Agent Directory is a public directory in which corporations, partnerships, and unincorporated business entities can designate an individual to receive service of initial notices of all proceedings and claims asserted against them before the CCB. The directory is now accepting submissions and will be regularly maintained. The website notes that this directory is different from the existing section 512 designated agent directory under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA).
The CCB’s Libraries and Archives page will also feature a public list of archives and libraries that have opted out of CCB proceedings. A form for libaries and archives to opt out is also available on the CCB.gov website. The website notes that a library or archives’ opt-out election also covers those entities’ employees acting within the scope of their employment.
The CCB is a copyright small claims court established by the CASE Act in 2020. The Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement Act builds the foundation for an alternative forum in which parties may voluntarily seek to resolve certain copyright claims regarding any category of copyrighted work. The CASE Act established the three-member Copyright Claims Board, where officers are recommended by the register of copyrights and are formally appointed by the Librarian of Congress.
Each officer is a licensed attorney with at least seven years of legal experience under their belt. Two of the professionals must have substantial experience in “evaluation, litigation, or adjudication of copyright infringement claims.” CCB Officer terms will last six years, though the first and second Board appointees will only serve four and five years respectively.