Online service providers that have previously submitted designated agent information to the U.S. Copyright Office in accordance with the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) through a paper process must re-register through a new online portal. If an online service provider does not re-register by December 31, 2017, it may lose its safe harbor protections under the DMCA.
If an online service provider meets certain requirements, it will not be liable for copyright infringement claims arising from infringing material posted by their users or links to infringing material. To take advantage of the safe harbor, the service provider needs to follow a number of steps, including designating an agent to receive copyright complaints, and registering that agent's contact information with the U.S. Copyright Office.
Service providers who have previously designated an agent through a paper process are still required to submit new designations through the electronic system by December 31, 2017. On January 1, 2018, all paper designations will become invalid and only those designations made through the online registration system will satisfy the DMCA requirement of designating a registered agent.
For more advice on the next steps you need to take, read our detailed client alert available here.
Contributors: Adam Aft & Julia Woods