So, What Didn't Enter The Public Domain This Week, That Should Have
from the take-a-look dept
- Winston Churchill, A History of the English-Speaking Peoples, Volume I and Volume II
- Philip K. Dick, Minority Report
- Ian Fleming, Diamonds are Forever
- Fred Gibson, Old Yeller
- Billie Holiday, Lady Sings the Blues
- Alan Lerner, My Fair Lady
- Eugene O'Neill, Long Day’s Journey into Night
- John Osborne, Look Back in Anger
- Dodie Smith, 101 Dalmations
And, of course, this only covers works that were kept under copyright for the full 56 years. Since the earlier copyright law required a renewal at 28 years, and 85% of copyrights were not renewed (suggesting that the vast majority of copyright holders don't value them past 28 years), lots of works from 1984 should also be entering the public domain, but probably won't get there for another century or so.
And the real sad part is just how much culture we're losing because of all this:
Perhaps the most troubling aspect of the current copyright term is that in most cases, the cultural harm is not offset by any benefit to an author or rights holder. Unlike the famous works highlighted here, the vast majority of works from 1956 do not retain commercial value. This means that no one is benefiting from continued copyright, while the works remain both commercially unavailable and culturally off limits. The public loses the possibility of meaningful access for no good reason.It's difficult to see how this situation makes any sense at all.