Documents

Copyright Dispute Policy

Effective date: September 9, 2021

This policy describes Substack’s processes for receiving and responding to copyright infringement notices, sent by rightsholders or their agents, regarding material our users have posted to the Substack platform. This policy is designed to comply with the requirements of the notice-and-takedown provisions of the United States’ Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”), meaning that we generally remove or disable content that rightsholders claim to be infringing. Undefined terms used here have the meanings given to them in our Terms of Use.

Caution Advised

The notices described in this policy are serious legal actions with potentially serious consequences. Note in particular:

  • Filing a false copyright notice can be unlawful. Aside from perjury penalties, sending false copyright notices can create legal claims under the DMCA.

  • Dispute copyright notices with care. Copyright owners can prevent disabled content from being put back by initiating legal action.

  • Information submitted in notices is not private. Your copyright notice will be sent to the other party. We reserve the right to publicly post and share redacted copyright notices for transparency reporting purposes.

  • Copyright disputes are tracked for purposes of our Repeat Infringer Policy. Our policies and the DMCA both commit us to taking action against repeat infringers, and we will terminate the accounts of repeat infringers in certain cases. How you respond to copyright notices informs our repeat infringer evaluation.

Consider seeking professional advice before proceeding with any notice described in this policy.

Submitting Notices and Our Designated Agent

This policy provides links to our preferred forms for submitting copyright notices. Although we respond to all copyright notices submitted under this policy expeditiously, submitting your notice through our forms will help ensure that your notice is compliant with legal requirements and receives the fastest possible response.

If you prefer to submit a non-form notice to our designated agent, you can do so by emailing copyright@substackinc.com. Our designated agent can also be reached by mail at Substack DMCA Processing, 111 Sutter Street, Floor 7, San Francisco, CA 94104. 

Sending a Copyright Notice

If you believe that something on Substack infringes a copyright that belongs to you, you can send us a copyright notice by completing this form. On receipt of a notice compliant with the requirements of the DMCA, our practice is to expeditiously remove or disable the material identified as infringing. Note that copyright notices can be disputed under the terms of this policy, and that the dispute process may result in replacement of removed or disabled content.

When sending a non-form notice to our designated agent, be sure that it includes all the information required under the DMCA. For your reference, this includes:

  • A description of the work or works you claim have been infringed

  • A description of the content on our website you claim to be infringing and the associated URL(?_=%2Fs%23mNVOuGSyoYHv%2BnAXRV4TY8MWIsc%3D)

  • Your contact information

  • Your statement confirming a good faith belief that use of the material in the manner complained of is not authorized by the copyright owner, its agent, or the law

  • Your statement confirming that the information you’ve provided is accurate, and under penalty of perjury, that you are authorized to act on behalf of the owner of an exclusive right that is allegedly infringed

  • Your signature

Receiving a Copyright Notice

If something you’ve posted to Substack is the target of a valid copyright notice, we will generally send you a copy of that notice when we remove or disable the allegedly infringing content. To replace the removed or disabled content, you must dispute the notice in accordance with the terms of this policy. We reserve the right to suspend or terminate the accounts of users who replace removed content in a manner inconsistent with this policy.

Disputing a Copyright Notice

You may dispute a copyright notice submitted against your Substack account by completing this form. After receiving a dispute notice that meets the requirements of the DMCA, we will send a complete copy of the notice to the complaining party. The rightsholder will then have 10 business days to initiate legal action and notify us. If we don’t receive timely notice of legal action from the rightsholder, we will generally replace the material that had been removed or disabled.

When sending a non-form notice to our designated agent, be sure that it includes all the information required under the DMCA. For your reference, this includes:

  • A description of the content that’s been removed and any associated URL(?_=%2Fs%23mNVOuGSyoYHv%2BnAXRV4TY8MWIsc%3D)

  • Your full name and contact information, including your address and phone number

  • A statement, under penalty of perjury, that you have a good faith belief that the removed content was taken down as a result of mistake or misidentification

  • A statement consenting to the jurisdiction of the Federal District Court for the judicial district in which your address is located or, if you are outside of the United States, consenting to the jurisdiction of any judicial district in which Substack can be found (for instance, the Northern District of California)

  • A statement that you will accept service of process from the copyright notice sender or their agent at the address you’ve provided.

  • Your signature

Copyright at Substack

This policy is incorporated into our Terms of Use, and is only one component of how Substack handles copyright and copyright-adjacent issues. Other relevant terms and policies include: 

If you have any further questions on our various copyright policies, please contact us at copyright@substackinc.com.