Re: What do I do? (fwd)


Terry Carroll (
Sat, 17 May 1997 11:50:00 -0700 (PDT)

On Fri, 16 May 1997, Tung-chiang Yang wrote:

> I don't think I will do this, but Terry's legal suggestion showed us
> we need two printed copies of our FAQ's for registration purpose. What
> if we update the FAQ frequently, for some certain newsgroups?

Since I no longer represent clients, I no longer carry malpractice
insurance, so I can't advise you. I will tell you how I treat my FAQ.

I registered a version. My school of thought is to re-register when there
are very substantial changes. For example, I might register V1.0 and
V2.0, but not bother registering V1.1.0, V1.1.1, etc.

Basically, if I consider it a substantial enough update to warrant a new
high-level version number, I consider it a substantial enough update to
warrant a new registration.

Here's the reasoning behind this. If I register V1.0, and someone copies
V1.1, they've also copied the material that's in the registered V1.0.
Therefore, the registration of V1.0 is sufficient for the enhanced
remedies. Furthermore, it's unlikely that they might just take a big
chunk of V1.1 without also taking a big chunk of V1.0.

Now, if I put out a V2.0, it's conceivable that someone might take some
substantial chunks of V2.0 without also taking from V1.0. In that case,
the registration of V1.0 might not be enough to cover some copying of V2.0
(although i most cases, it'd probably cover copying V2.0 in it's entirety,
since even between V2.0 and V1.0 the differences aren't _that_ much).

And while I no longer advise clients, when I did advise clients, this is
exactly how I advised them: register a new version when they are at risk
that substantial portions can be copied from it that were not in a
previously registered version. This was usually in the context of
computer programs, but applies equally well to any type of copyrighted

Terry Carroll       | "The invention provides means for continuously
Santa Clara, CA     | trapping sparrows and supplying a cat and     | neighborhood cats with a supply of sparrows."
Modell delenda est  |                - U.S. Patent no. 4,150,505