Karl Miller wrote:
> How can this be changed? I would suggest that, like any unenforceable law,
> like prohibition, change comes from the populace pushing the envelope.
Permit me to suggest that "the populace" does not give a tinker's dam
about this issue; that even the Elvis addicts are too few to support the
industry; above all that the irresistible force of money will contiue to
move the legislature against the broader interests of society.
Disney is a unique American institution with a particular view of value.
They reissue their most lucrative titles one at a time for a brief
period each during each phase of technological or packaging development.
I am told that their legal office for infringement is a profit center
for the corporation, earing its way by awards resulting from suits.
Among the names applied to the Sonny Bono law are Mickey Mouse and
unprintable variations on the names of other characters. While Disney is
far from the only force behind the legislation in the U.S. and now in
Europe, it appears to be the most open-handed one when measured by
But the broader point is that the population is far too busy following
the exploits of the current superstar - yesterday's nonentity and
tomorrow's has-been - to care about expiration of copyright. Fifteen
minutes of fame suggests and indeed seems to deliver that at sixteen
minutes the famous become the forgotten. That there is a minute cadre of
aficianados who bemoan the injustice of it all has little relevance;
there is no Disney behind a move to equity.
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