Another year goes past but the same corporate greed issue is still rearing its head https://www.eff.org/https%3A//kittens.eff.org/deeplinks/2018/01/public-domain-starts-growing-again-next-year-and-its-about-time
Have you ever wondered how it’s possible for there to be two Jungle Book movies to be in development at the same time? Why everything seems to be based on a work by Shakespeare? Or why it always seems like someone is telling a version of The Wizard of Oz? The answer is that these works are in the public domain, meaning that copyright law no longer prevents other artists from adapting them to create new works.
One major rationale for copyright is supposedly that, by giving an exclusive set of rights to artists for their work, we incentivize creativity by making it possible for artists to benefit from releasing works to the public. But copyright protection is supposed to be limited, and once it expires, a work enters the public domain, where anyone can use it.
In the United States, the length of the copyright term has been steadily extended so that published works are effectively copyrighted for 95 years (for corporate works) or until 70 years after an author’s death (for individual works). This has resulted in a public domain that saw increasingly less materials being added to it, limiting the ability of artists to build on works that came before them. The last time Congress changed the law in the 1998 Copyright Term Extension Act, it was applied retroactively. Effectively, it meant that nothing has entered the public domain in the United States for years. January 1, 2019 will mark the end of this dry spell as works first published in 1923 will finally enter the public domain.
Its no secret to WinMx users of long standing that overbroad copyright protection causes artistic stagnation and fuels a cycle of creative drought as artists dont feel the need to produce anything after they hit the big time with a hit or two, this behaviour is encouraged by the recording industry, 95 years of easy money with a small percentage going to the actual artist is something their shareholders can take to the bank. By following a model of backing visibly sucessful artists to the detriment of others they minimise their already miniscule investment outlay and take little risk, and yet they demand a lot of legal protection paid for out of the public purse, a wealthy artist feels no need to work like the rest of us do day in and day out for tens of years, little fresh material follows a hit album, there are of course some exceptions to this rule but there are many artists portfolios confirming it, we all want to keep artists motivated but a fair balance is bettter for them and us in terms of further productivity, excessive profit based protectionism delivers stagnation, just when did your favourite artists release something new ?
I can say with my hand on my heart that I havent seen any one of them doing a shift at walmart to feed themselves yet.