With the new year, it is time for me to write my annual bug. Like many products, ours includes a copyright statement of the format "© 2006–2008 Company Name" that is displayed to our users. Every year, I submit a bug to change the ending year.

The United States Copyright Office provides the following guidelines in the copyright basics PDF.

Form of Notice for Visually Perceptible Copies

The notice for visually perceptible copies should contain all the following three elements:

  1. The symbol © (the letter C in a circle), or the word “Copyright,” or the abbreviation “Copr.”; and
  2. The year of first publication of the work. In the case of compilations or derivative works incorporating previously published material, the year date of first publication of he compilation or derivative work is sufficient. The year date may be omitted where a pictorial, graphic, or sculp­tural work, with accompanying textual matter, if any, is reproduced in or on greeting cards, postcards, stationery, jewelry, dolls, toys, or any useful article; and
  3. The name of the owner of copyright in the work, or an abbreviation by which the name can be recognized, or a generally known alternative designation of the owner.

By these guidelines, the second date is not required. However, sometimes it is better to go with the flow.