(Promulgated by the National Copyright Administration on 20 February 2002 and effective as of the date of promulgation.)
PART ONE GENERAL PORVISIONS
Article 1 These Procedures are formulated to implement the Protection of Computer Software Regulations (the Regulations).
Article 2 To promote the development of China's software industry and to enhance the innovative and competitive capabilities of China's information industry, the copyright administrative department of the State encourages registration of software and give priority protection to registered software.
Article 3 These Procedures apply to the registration of software copyrights and software copyright exclusive licensing contracts and assignment contracts.
Article 4 The applicant for registration of a software copyright shall be the copyright owner of the software and the natural person, legal person or other organization in whom the software copyright becomes vested through succession, assignment or inheritance.
The applicant for registration of a software copyright contract shall be a party to a software copyright exclusive licensing contract or assignment contract.
Article 5 These Procedures shall be applicable where the applicant or one of the applicants is a foreign national or stateless person.
Article 6 The National Copyright Administration shall be in charge of the nationwide administration of the registration of software copyrights.
The National Copyright Administration recognizes the Copyright Protection Centre of China as the institution for registration of software.
The Copyright Protection Centre of China may establish local software registration offices, and shall report to the National Copyright Administration for record filing within one month after the establishment.
PART TWO REGISTRATION APPLICATION
Article 7 The software for which registration is applied shall have been developed independently or formed with significant improvement in its function or performance after modification to an original software with the permission of the original copyright owner.
Article 8 If the software for which copyright registration is applied is developed by several persons in cooperation, all copyright owners may agree on one of them to deal with copyright registration on behalf of the other copyright owners. If the copyright owners fail to reach an agreement, any of the copyright owners may apply for registration provided that the interests of the other copyright owners are not prejudiced and that the other copyright owners are recorded on the application for registration.
Article 9 In applying for registration for a software copyright, the following materials shall be submitted to the Copyright Protection Centre of China:
1. a software copyright registration application form completed as required;
2. identifying materials of the software; and
3. relevant supporting documents.
Article 10 The identifying materials of a software shall include the identifying materials of its program(s) and its file(s).
The identifying materials of the program(s) and the file(s) shall consist of the first and the last 30 consecutive pages of the source program and of any type of file. If the whole source program and the file contains less than 60 pages, the whole source program and the file shall be submitted. Except in specified circumstances, each page of the program shall contain no less than 50 lines, and each page of the file shall contain no less than 30 lines.
Article 11 In applying for registration of a software copyright, the following main supporting documents shall be submitted:
1. the identity document of the natural person, legal person or other organization;
2. where there is a written copyright ownership contract or project assignment document, such contract or document shall be submitted;
3. where the software has been developed from an original software with the permission of the original copyright owner, the licensing document from the original copyright owner; and
4. in the case of a successor, an assignee or an heir, the document evidencing the succession, assignment or inheritance shall be submitted.
Article 12 In applying for registration of a software copyright, one of the following options may be elected for an exceptional deposit of the identifying materials:
1. the first and the last 30 consecutive pages of the source program in which the parts containing secrets may be covered by thick oblique black lines, but such covered parts shall not exceed 50% of the source program deposited;
2. the first 10 consecutive pages of the source program, and 50 consecutive pages from any part of the source program; or
3. the first and the last 30 consecutive pages of the target program, and 20 consecutive pages from any part of the source program.
Exceptional deposit of files shall be handled by reference to the preceding paragraph.
Article 13 When applying for registration of a software copyright, the applicant may request that the source program, file(s) or sample be sealed. No one other than the applicant or the judicial authority may open the seal.
Article 14 The parties to a software copyright assignment contract or exclusive licensing contract may apply to the Copyright Protection Centre of China for registration of the contract. In applying for registration of a contract, the following materials shall be submitted:
1. a contract registration form completed as required;
2. a copy of the contract; and
3. the identity document of the applicant.
Article 15 The applicant may request to withdraw the registration application at any time prior to the approval of the application.
Article 16 A registered software copyright owner or registered contract party may make changes or supplements to the registered items. In applying for a change or supplement to the registration, the applicant shall submit the following materials:
1. a change or supplement application form completed as required;
2. a copy of the registration certificate or document; and
3. the materials relating to the change or supplement.
Article 17 The standard form prepared by the Copyright Protection Centre of China shall be used for registration application and the form shall be affixed with the seal (signature) of the applicant.
The application form shall be completed in Chinese. If any certificate or supporting document submitted is in a foreign language, a Chinese translation shall be attached.
International standard A4 297mm X 210mm (length x width) paper shall be used for registration application documents.
Article 18 Application documents may be delivered in person or sent by registered mail. When submitting application documents, the applicant shall state the name of the applicant and the name of the software. Where there is an acceptance or registration number, it shall be stated as well.
PART THREE EXAMINATION AND APPROVAL
Article 19 For applications referred to in Article 9 and Article 14 hereof, the date of receipt of the materials in compliance with the provisions of Part Two hereof shall be the date of acceptance, and the applicant shall be notified of the acceptance in writing.
Article 20 The Copyright Protection Centre of China shall complete its examination of an accepted application within 60 days of the date of acceptance. If an application complies with the stipulations of the Regulations and the provisions hereof, registration shall be granted, a corresponding registration certificate shall be issued and the registration shall be announced.
Article 21 In any of the following circumstances, no registration shall be granted and the applicant shall be notified in writing:
1. the application form is not completed or is not conforming and no supplement or correction is made within the stipulated time limit;
2. the identifying materials submitted are not the software program or file(s) specified in the Regulations;
3. the name of the software and the name of the copyright owner in the application documents are not consistent and no supporting document is provided; or
4. there is an ownership dispute over the software for which the registration application is made.
Article 22 If the Copyright Protection Centre of China requires the applicant to supplement and/or correct other registration materials, the applicant shall do so within 30 days. If the applicant fails to supplement and/or correct the materials within the time limit, the application shall be deemed to be withdrawn.
Article 23 The National Copyright Administration may cancel a registration pursuant to:
1. a final judicial judgment; or
2. a decision of administrative punishment made by the copyright administrative department.
Article 24 The Copyright Protection Centre of China may cancel a registration at the request of the applicant.
Article 25 If a registration certificate is lost or damaged, the applicant may apply for a new certificate or replacement certificate.
PART FOUR ANNOUNCEMENT OF SOFTWARE REGISTRATION
Article 26 Except as otherwise provided herein, anyone may consult the software registration announcements and the relevant disclosable registration documents.
Article 27 The contents of a software registration announcement shall be as follows:
1. registration of the software copyright;
2. registered items of the software copyright contract;
3. cancellation of the software registration; and
4. other items.
PART FIVE FEES
Article 28 When applying for software registration or for handling other matters, the applicant shall pay the following fees:
1. the software copyright registration fee;
2. the software copyright contract registration fee;
3. the fee for the change or supplement of registration;
4. the registration certificate fee;
5. the fee for deposit seal and custody;
6. the exceptional deposit fee;
7. the consultation fee;
8. the fee for cancellation of registration application; and
9. other fees that need to be paid.
Specific charging standards shall be formulated and announced by the National Copyright Administration in conjunction with the State Council department in charge of pricing.
Article 29 Fees paid shall not be refundable if an application is withdrawn by the applicant or is not registered by the registration authority.
Article 30 All fees stipulated in Article 28 hereof may be remitted through postal offices or banks, or paid directly to the Copyright Protection Centre of China.
PART SIX SUPPLEMENTARY PROVISIONS
Article 31 The first day of all time limits provided herein and those stipulated by the Copyright Protection Centre of China shall not be counted. If a time limit is expressed in years or months, its expiry date shall be the corresponding day of the final month or, the last day of the month if there is no such corresponding day in that month. If the expiry date falls on a statutory holiday, the first working day after the holiday shall be the expiry date.
Article 32 The date of the postmark of all documents sent by mail from an applicant to the Copyright Protection Centre of China shall be the submission date. If the postmark stamped on the envelope is not clear, the date of receipt shall be the submission date unless the applicant is able to provide evidence. Where a document is sent by mail from the Copyright Protection Centre of China, it shall be assumed that the date of receipt by the receiver shall be the date after 15 days of the date of posting the document where such document is sent to the capital of a province, autonomous region or municipality directly under the central government, or the date after 21 days of the date of posting the document where it is sent to other regions.
Article 33 If, due to force majeure or other proper reasons, an applicant is unable to meet the time limit stipulated by these Procedures or the Copyright Protection Centre of China, the applicant may request to postpone the time limit accordingly within 30 days after the elimination of the obstacle.
Article 34 The National Copyright Administration is in charge of the interpretation, supplementation and amendment of these Procedures.
Article 35 These Procedures shall be implemented as of the date of promulgation.
Namied Patent & Trademark Law Office
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