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Re: [ARSCLIST] Britain reverses position on copyright extension

It is indeed tragic that an allegedly centrist government should ignore the recent advice of its own expert commission and cringe so pitifully before the music industry lobby at the EC.

It is also disappointing that supposedly sophisticated law-makers should accept the cynical sentimentalization of ageing musicians as a weapon of debate, particularly when the basic argument is so patently spurious.

The EC's own 2006 report on copyright, commissioned from a distinguished panel of Dutch lawyers and academics, shows that the only predictable winners from an extended EC recording copyright period would be the corporate heirs to the labels, and that such corporate heirs are almost never the musicians who make the records.

The fact that the extension effectively bars community access to 20th century recorded music is, of course, largely ignored.

See my March 2008 piece in the IHT <http://www.iht.com/articles/ 2008/03/24/opinion/edbaldwin.php>

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