IMO, Mike is 100% dead-on accurate here. This Supreme Court's narrow
interpretation of the Copyright clause in the Constitution really allows
Congress to define terms in whatever way they see fit, even if that
means an endless series of extensions. The industries will surely demand
the extensions, and Congress will grant them as long as this issue
remains on the fringes where dwell archives and would-be consumers of
What these consumers and archives (meaning "we") lack is leverege.
Proposals for use or lose copyright, smaller terms, etc. etc. while all
nice, miss the point that nobody has any reason to give those things to
us. And until they do have a reason, they won't.
These are my opinions, obviously, not official policy of the Library of
Congress. Not much chance of that.
>>> [log in to unmask] 8/17/2004 5:30:02 PM >>>
At 01:25 PM 8/17/2004 -0700, Eric Jacobs wrote:
>So, what makes copyrights so much different from patents that
>copyrights require significantly longer periods of protection
>that in most cases outlive the original copyright holder?
Corporations have advantages when patents expire. The big ones have
to gain by letting copyright expire.
But the point is pointless; consumers have proved to be powerless
extension of U.S. copyright. Neither in the Congress nor in the courts
reason applied. There is no question that the extension of copyright
recent decades is contrary to the Constitutional purpose behind it, but
Supreme Court has held that that is no barrier to enforcement of the
Apply logic all you will; it is irrelevant.
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