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----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Karl Miller" <[log in to unmask]>
> On Tue, 18 Apr 2006, steven c wrote:
>
> > Forwarded for comment...a very well-reasoned and well-written opposition
> > to the British attempt to import the US "eternal copyright" on sound
> > recordings...
> >
> > Steven C. Barr
> > >
> > >
> > > THE PROPOSED EXTENSION OF MECHANICAL COPYRIGHT TO 95 YEARS
>
> Thank you for sharing this. For me, such an extension of the copyrights
> proffers the notion that a music recording is nothing more than a consumer
> product like a soft drink. In this country we are beginning to address
> notions like "victim's rights." I believe that it is time for the rights
> of those who value recordings to get their "rights" addressed. I have no
> problem if the copyrights are extended in perpetuity, provided my right to
> access to information can be addressed. For me, that is at the heart of
> the matter and from a practical consideration, based upon US copyrights
> and the proposed extension of the British Copyrights...rights to access
> are not valued in the slightest.
>
> Reflecting on what I just typed...I wonder...I think we all remember when
> Coca Cola "threatened" to stop making the classic coke...what would happen
> if they did stop making the classic coke...should the recipe become public
> domain?
>
> Then I think out archives preserving the recorded history of performing
> organizations. Much of this preservation is being done, when the law
> allows, with tax payer money.  Yet, as a tax payer, I am denied reasonable
> access to those recordings. Maybe it is just my odd way of looking at
things, but
> the current situation seems absurd to me, and the law as proposed for the
> UK sounds like something out of a Monty Python sketch.
>
More years ago than I care to think seriously about (when I realized I
had taught myself to read by "looking over my mama's shoulder") my family
had a set of "Book House" children's books...and a story in one of them
told the old fable of "The Dog In the Manger." This is exactly what the
global record companies will become if "eternal copyright" is made
universal! They'll be able to say "Well, we won't reissue it, since
there isn't enough profit to be made...but you CAN'T reissue it, because
we own the copyright to it!"

Perhaps we could return to the long-discontinued system in which
both Victor and HMV would, for a not-too-large price, press you a
copy of ANYTHING for which they still held the stamper...

Steven C. Barr