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Re: [ARSCLIST] NYT: Protecting Mickey Mouse at Art's Expense
At 04:23 PM 1/28/2003 -0500, stevenc@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx wrote:
There is a very simple fix to all of this, at least for sound recordings
(it might work for books as well) I call the "Use it or lose it" approach.
Establish a duration after the expiration of which the copyright holder
can only maintain his/her/its ownership if the entity is available for
sale (or lease, etc.) and has been continuously so through the holder
or a selected agency thereof. Thereafter, the holder would not lose
ownership...they would, however, be held to a policy of compulsory
licensing similar to that which applies to composers and publishers,
whereby the material could be used on payment of required royalties.
This would avoid the "dog in the manger" situation where a copyright
holder can say "you CAN'T reissue that...and I WON'T!" thus blocking
access to the material for current users!
I would certainly concur - but how does one inspire the Disney-funded
Congress to see the wisdom of the proposal? Note that the holder of rights
need not *say* "I won't" under current law. He may be inspired to say "I
may" in order to keep protection for the last twenty years of the current
term, but that seems to be all that would be needed.