§ 302 . Duration of copyright: Works created on or after January 1, 19784
(a) In General. — Copyright in a work created on or after January 1, 1978, subsists from its creation and, except as provided by the following subsections, endures for a term consisting of the life of the author and 70 years after the author's death.
(b) Joint Works. — In the case of a joint work prepared by two or more authors who did not work for hire, the copyright endures for a term consisting of the life of the last surviving author and 70 years after such last surviving author's death.
(c) Anonymous Works, Pseudonymous Works, and Works Made for Hire. — In the case of an anonymous work, a pseudonymous work, or a work made for hire, the copyright endures for a term of 95 years from the year of its first publication, or a term of 120 years from the year of its creation, whichever expires first. If, before the end of such term, the identity of one or more of the authors of an anonymous or pseudonymous work is revealed in the records of a registration made for that work under subsections (a) or (d) of section 408, or in the records provided by this subsection, the copyright in the work endures for the term specified by subsection (a) or (b), based on the life of the author or authors whose identity has been revealed. Any person having an interest in the copyright in an anonymous or pseudonymous work may at any time record, in records to be maintained by the Copyright Office for that purpose, a statement identifying one or more authors of the work; the statement shall also identify the person filing it, the nature of that person's interest, the source of the information recorded, and the particular work affected, and shall comply in form and content with requirements that the Register of Copyrights shall prescribe by regulation.
The real infringers, you mean the people stealing Films, Books, Music, Images, Games etc?
If you can't accept the fine, don't do the crime...
Collateral damage, the unseen damage for example on a Film is that 1,000's are not made on large budgets by large corporations and many of the crew work for expenses plus 'points' on sales - every time it is pirated, illegally downloaded, it is the crew you are stealing money from, not some large faceless company..
Get your facts straight, go and speak to the crews.
The limits the report suggests would mean it would be exactly the same as it is now for the first 12 years. After that you could still retain your copyright, you would just have to pay for it at that point. The public domain would begin to be replenished again with a system like this, instead of our culture rotting on basement shelves like it is now.
So, I create something and then every 12yrs I have to pay to keep what I created - please, listen to yourself, that is the most ridiculous idea I have ever heard in relation to copyright...
In fact, if people keep stealing copyrighted items, it might even be feasible, some creative might just be able to afford to pay it...
Meanwhile, the 2.5M images I have in my archives will remain my property for 70yrs after my death and will be held by my descendants. It is MY choice or my descendants choice if they are made public, not yours, not the governments and not anyone elses...
I capitalised the word 'FACTS' because that is what they are and may I politely suggest some bedtime reading on the history of 'copyright' & 'patents', why it was needed and why it is still needed now and contrary to your comments, it has not been tilted to far in the wrong direction, it has not changed at all hardly since it was first introduced.
Yes, copyright law needs updating to take account of the changing 'digital world', however this is so the digital world can be included and not the whole law ripped up and re-written to suit those who wish everything on the net and everywhere else to be free...!
When you refer to 1,000's of years ago - how long ago do you mean? Human Beings have only been around for about 200K years and let's be honest, it was really only when the Industrial Revolution started that 'money' really came into it's own, when 'inventions' were coming thick and fast and being 'stolen' that copyright and patents became so important.. Edison did not invent the Light Bulb, patents had been registered long before, but he and his team created one for general use after studying these patents and he designed the electrical system to run it... but let's not let a myth get in the way of the truth eh?
A company can only exist if it makes money - they use staff, often called 'employees' and these employees want wages and want them to increase every year, they want pension funds, holidays, perks, etc. - so, if the company cannot protect it's products with 'copyright' and 'patents', how is it going to provide all the things it's 'employees' expect? People will not work for 'fresh air and windy pie', they like to be paid in hard cash as I am confident you do as well.
I can't speak for U.S. Law, but in the U.K., Copyright Theft is a CRIMINAL OFFENCE - that doesn't mean you can be arrested, but you can be served a summons to appear in Court and not just a 'civil' court.
Again, I cannot speak for U.S. Law, but in the UK, under the Theft Act of 1975, you commit the act of 'Theft' by taking something belonging to another party with the intent of depriving them of that 'something'. Theft is theft and a person stealing a paper clip from their employer or a car from their next door neighbour is exactly the same, it is theft - they are a 'thief' and theft from employers costs billions around the world, pushing up the cost of products and services to everyone. The cost to U.S. Industries alone is expected to be around $50 Billion a year (http://www.referenceforbusiness.com/small/Di-Eq/Employee-Theft.html)
I am not upset about the Internet, I get upset by the misconception that peoples beliefs that if it is on the internet, it's free - when clearly, that is not the case and that is why people want changes to copyright law, because they want free music, free films, free games, free images... the list goes on and on.
I don't care if the music industry stops making CD's and wants me to download, I just don't expect it for FREE!
So please, when you have worked in a 'creative' industry as long as I have, when you have seen what damage has been done to two of the industries I work in from copyright theft, then come back and have a sensible conversion...
When all you people are banging on about how tough copyright laws are, please remember the following FACTS:-
1. Without Copyright Protection, no one would produce Films, Music, Plays, technological devices, medicine, etc etc etc because without copyright protection, they could not earn a return on their investment in time and money or could not earn a living.
2. Without copyright protection, you would not be able to enjoy the benefits of driving a car, watching a television, go to the cinema, library or museum, no mobile phones etc. etc.
3. If someone creates something or invents something, it is their God Given RIGHT as to whether they decide to share it with the world, some give it away free, some use creative commons and some, like professional photographers, authors, film production companies, music publishers charge a FEE for usage etc because that's how they earn their living -
4. Don't change copyright law because of 'Hollywood' or because of 'Sony' etc, because the changes will apply to EVERYONE which means that INNOVATION will be RESTRICTED as anyone wanting to produce or invent anything will not be able to protect it from being stolen by others for their own financial benefit to the detriment of the creator.
5. Stealing copyright (property) is no different to stealing a car (also property) and it is for this reason that nearly all modernised countries are signed up to the BERNE CONVENTION to protect the rights of the creative industries.
The UK for example is the largest producer of Games for Consoles, PC's, iPhones etc. If copyright protection is relaxed, none of these small companies would exist, they would have never got off the ground.. it is the same reason many US creatives are screaming about potential changes to UK Copyright changes - a campaign I am part of in the UK to prevent.
The advent of the internet has generated a general attitude of 'what's yours is also mine', but if I stole your wallet, your car, your home, you would be the first on the phone to the Police to have me arrested.. well when you steal my images, remove my copyright logo, remove the metadata and make it an 'orphan work' on somewhere like PINTREST, then you are effectively stealing MY WALLET, my ability to pay my mortgage, feed my children, pay my bills.
They ONLY people that think Copyright is a BAD thing are those that do not work in a creative industry and fail to understand how it actually works - you just want everything for free, you want people to work for free whilst you want paying for your own work at the end of each month...