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Copyright Office Experiences Problems With Microfiche Use

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The Copyright Office are experiencing a backlash to their archaic ways of managing copyright applications with calls for them to update their systems for the 21st century. So where is the Copyright Office going wrong?

According to a recent LA Times article, copyright lawyers have highlighted the need for a review of the way the Copyright Office deals with incoming documents and document storage. With the current system, copyright applications have to be "submitted in the form of costly and increasingly redundant microfiche."

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This outdated system seems to have discouraged many from sending applications which brings problems further down the line when members of the public wish to view copyright details of films, music and art. They face many frustrations when they need to find documentation within the Copyright Office.

According to the article, when documentary film maker Aviva Kempner wanted to find out who owned a specific song so she could buy the rights to use it, she has to either send someone to the offices to search through the mountains of hard copy microfiche or she could pay a member of staff at the office $200 an hour with at least six weeks response time and no guarantee of finding the information she needs.

With all of these problems is it any wonder the company is getting criticism?

This Is Not Just a Problem in the US

The restrictive problems of storing documents on microfiche isn't just a problem in the United States, over here in the UK many organisations, including lots of local authorities, still store their archives on microfiche causing access problems not only for employees but also for members of the general public who have to go through a long, drawn out process to view the documents stored.

What Can Be Done to Bring Positive Changes?

But it's not all doom and gloom because something can be done to bring these companies into the 21st century, bringing improvements right across the board. Scanning microfiche to a digital format such as PDF or even an editable format like MS Word can save space, costs and, more importantly, time spent searching through hard copy archives.

After the microfiche have been scanned, they can be fully indexed making them retrievable instantly. Just a simple process like this can improve efficiencies in organisations such as the Copyright Office and UK local authorities.

Microfiche scanning can help to:benefits of microfiche scanning

  • Free up office space
  • Improve response to customer queries
  • Eliminate overheads by streamlining document management
  • Accelerate the flow of information and help you rapidly trace and retrieve documents
  • Improve document security and control
  • Comply easily to file retention laws

and much more (this list could go on forever!)

Microfiche Scanning Services

The LA Times article highlights common frustrations with businesses and organisations who fail to update their processes in line with technological advances. If you are a business or organisation in the UK however, we can help. Here at Pearl Scan, we have worked with a number of companies to digitise their microfiche archives.

Our microfiche scanning services are completely bespoke and can be tailored to suit your needs exactly. Our experienced sales team will work with you to understand your document management issues and explain the best solutions for you. For a free quote please give us a call or request a quote by following the relevant links below.

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