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----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Tim Brooks" <[log in to unmask]>
> Our European colleagues have an opportunity to make a difference right
now,
> as the EU, under pressure from the multinational entertainment companies,
> considers lengthening recording copyright terms there beyond the current
50 years.
> To what?  Maybe the 95 years that is embedded in federal law in the U.S.?
> (State law extends that even further.)  Maybe make it retroactive?  James
> Purnell, the UK's Minister for Creative Industries
(www.jamespurnell.labour.co.uk)
> has said that he will push this during his EU term in 2006.
All you really need to know to understand why this is happening is one
simple fact!
Starting next year, the first recordings of Elvis Presley fall into the
public
domain in the EU and here in Canada...and Sony/BMG starts to lose their firm
grip on one of their most profitable "cash cows!"

There is one important question, though. How would it be possible to make
copyright term changes retroactive? Considering that the material had once
been in the public domain, the obvious defense would be that the transfer
had been made when the material was p.d. and was thus entirely legal!

Steven C. Barr