mfioretti: copyright duration*

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  1. Much has already been written on the inherit problems with intellectual property, copyright, and patents, as well as the shrinking public domain and seemingly perpetual copyrights that undermine the benefits of sharing ideas. Below are some contemporary examples—by no means the most egregious incidents that have occurred—of flawed mindsets regarding copyrights, trademarks, and patents.
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  2. 21 Fox owns the rights to The Simpsons until 2082.
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  3. report from the Library of Congress's National Film Preservation Board called The Survival of American Silent Feature Films: 1912–1929 PDF » paints a dismal picture of the archival record of silent movies. In all, "14% of the 10,919 silent films released by major studios exist in their original 35mm or other format," although some of the missing items are extant in lesser transfers and foreign editions. But in all, "we have lost 75% of the creative record from the era that brought American movies to the pinnacle of world cinematic achievement in the 20th century."

    It's a sobering reminder of the fragility of even relatively recent media, and the need for preservation. An appreciable slice of the missing archival materials are still in copyright, with attending difficulties in clearing them for the purpose of striking and circulating new prints.
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  4. IN A move described as “remarkable” by Joycean scholars, the singer Kate Bush has said she has been given permission to use Molly Bloom’s famous soliloquy from Ulysses in a song to be released next month.
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  5. gli stessi autori considerano il sistema attuale di copyright inefficiente, sia da un punto di vista pratico – nessuno sa veramente quali e quante sono le opere tutelate (è successo col caso Napster in cui le major non avevano un archivio aggiornato delle opere) – sia da un punto di vista economico: perchè la rendita per gli autori è decrescente negli anni: fatta la rendita pari a 1 euro, questa rendita dopo 50 anni è di otto millesimi di euro (E Mozart finì in una fossa comune. Vizi e Virtù del copyright, Fabio Macaluso, Egea 2013)

    Allungamento della durata dei diritti connessi

    E nonostante questa banale considerazione il Parlamento italiano si accinge ad aumentare la durata temporale della tutela dei diritti connessi delle opere musicali da cinquanta a settant’anni. In questo caso l’intento è nobile, parte dalla constatazione dell’aumento della speranza di vita dei giovani autori e non rinviabile: si tratta di recepire la direttiva 2011/77/UE.Anche se uno studio dei dati storici del copyright office americano ha stimato il tasso di svalutazione annuale di un’opera tra 5,4 e il 12,2 % che si traduce in una vita commerciale media tra gli 8 e i 15 anni. Insomma, come hanno detto i premi nobel interpellati nella famosa causa Eldred vs. Ashcroft – che ha visto il lancio delle Creative commons da parte di Lawrence Lessig-, non esiste evidenza che allungare la durata temporale della tutela incentivi gli autori senza instaurare un sistema di rendite improduttive che sottraggono ai giovani autori la possibilità di attingere al patrimonio preesistente e alle loro stesse opere.
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  6. McIntyre told the Telegraph: "It took me a long time to get into publishing and I've only started earning royalties. It's very hard to make a living this job, hardly anyone gets rich at it. JK Rowling and Julia Donaldson are the exceptions, most writers and illustrators earn below minimum wage. I think if work hard enough, I might just be able to scrape by.

    "It scares me when it looks like someone wants to take away yet another source of income. It sounds like the Greens want us to rely on the Arts Council for funding instead of earning money directly from our work, and that would involve writing endless complicated grant proposals. I'd rather let my readers decide whether my work is worth their money than a handful of people in a government office."

    "Though our long-term vision includes a proposed copyright length of 14 years, we have no plans to implement this in the near future.”

    The spokesman later added: "It would be 14 years after publishing, as recommended by Cambridge University researcher Rufus Pollock."

    BTW, if it's taking you 12 years to earn a royalty, then either
    a) you've been screwed by your publisher, and no change in copyright term will alter that., or
    b) your book just wasn't very good anyway, in which case, changing copyright terms won't mean much there either.

    Almost every copyrighted work makes the majority of its earnings within the first 5 years. We're talking one in a million or rarer that actually make significant amounts after 14 years.

    Think of it like a business, if your business is taking more than 14 years to see a profit, then it's not a business, it's a hobby (as far as the tax man is concerned) and you've probably gone bankrupt.

    The extension of copyright terms is painted as benefitting artists (who, lets face it won't see a significant change in royalties between 14 years and 140 years) but the reality is keeping the few works which ARE valuable long term (and mostly owned by conglomerates) under copyright.

    If you can't make a 'living' at one work per 10-12 years, then you should probably find another line of work.

    And what about books that continue to sell strongly after 14 years? Do I suddenly lose all financial profit from them, but the publisher may still sell them without paying royalties? How is this fair? Also, many authors are now republishing their backlist, books that went out of print 15 or more years ago, and are able to finally make a living from them. You would deny them this right?


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    ktetch lamaha • 15 hours ago

    ok, so you're one of the INCREDIBLY RARE percentage of writers that's got a book still selling after 14 years, then... yes, sorry, perhaps you should maybe go back and do some more work.
    Or maybe if it's such a big seller, you could ooh, sell the book yourself. since it's clearly selling well enough to be financially viable.

    What an entitlement complex. You think that you should just be able to do something once, and be set for life, while everyone else has to work each and every day.
    Tags: , by M. Fioretti (2015-04-26)
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  7. Take, for example, the famous Eames walnut and leather armchair with matching ottoman. The officially licensed and copyrighted producer, Vitra, sells them for £6,814 in John Lewis. Yet copies made in Chinese factories sell over the internet and in some stores for as little as £399.
    Mies van der Rohe’s Barcelona chair.
    Mies van der Rohe’s Barcelona chair.

    It is these low-cost knock-offs that will now be banned. A change in law which came into force on 28 July 2016 means that retailers will no longer be able to sell cheap replicas of iconic furniture designs and shoppers will instead be forced to pay thousands for original designs – ie those made brand new under licence with the agreement of the late designers’ estates. The six-month transition period will run out at the end of January.

    Companies can currently sell replica goods providing 25 years has passed from the date the designer died, but the EU ruling – speeded up by the British government – has extended that period to 70 years. Eames died in 1978, so the new protection extends the copyright of the many chairs, tables and clocks he designed until 2048. For items designed jointly with his wife, Ray, the copyright would extend for a further 10 years, as she died in 1988.

    The explosion in popularity of “mid-century modern” designs means the new law will have a huge impact on many people furnishing their homes.
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  8. “During the First World War Centenary commemorations, many organisations want to make original unpublished works such as diaries and letters accessible to the public. Because they are still under copyright protection, they cannot do so without seeking permission from the rights holder. This is even more problematic if the rights holders are untraceable.

    We are asking everyone who cares about our history, everyone who cares about telling our collective story without restrictions, to join the campaign.”

    Up to 50% of archival records in the UK are ‘orphan works’. This is when the rights holder cannot be identified and/or traced. The Imperial War Museum has an estimated 1.75 million documents that are orphan works, approximately 20-25% of the 7.9 million documents in their collections.

    The campaign is calling on the UK Government to reduce the term of copyright protection in certain unpublished works from the end of the year 2039 to the author’s lifetime plus 70 years, as per provisions laid out in the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act (ERRA) 2013.
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  9. Some of Britain’s leading furniture makers have claimed more than 6,000 British companies are under threat if the Government pushes ahead with controversial changes to copyright law.

    UK furniture manufacturing – a £7billion industry employing almost 100,000 people – has been put under pressure by Government plans to impose EU rules on the sector.

    Under the current law, furniture designed by famous names such as Charles Eames can be reproduced freely 25 years after being created.
    Not sitting comfortably: Makers wouldn't be able to copy designs such as this by Charles Eames and Ray Eames

    Not sitting comfortably: Makers wouldn't be able to copy designs such as this by Charles Eames and Ray Eames

    This allows makers across the UK to produce and sell replicas of well-known table and chair designs at affordable prices, a practice that accounts for a large part of the industry.

    But the Government plans to extend copyright protection for designs deemed ‘artistic’ until 70 years after the death of the creator.
    Tags: , , by M. Fioretti (2012-08-03)
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  10. Our modern era doesn't just celebrate stories about gods and demi-gods; we have a whole host of new mythic figures that we obsess about, from Luke Skywalker to Superman to Captain Kirk. But who owns these legends?
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