The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #17319   Message #166883
Posted By: GUEST,Okiemockbird
22-Jan-00 - 06:06 PM
Thread Name: Sonny Bono Copyright Extension
Subject: RE: Sonny Bono Copyright Extension
Joe Offer,

The CTEA was signed into law in late 1998. It extends copyrights for works published after December 31, 1922 and before January 1, 1978 to 95 years from publication, up from the 75 years provided by earlier law, which was itself a 19-year extension of the 56-year term provided by the 1909 law. Look for the same moneymen to ask for yet another 20 years as the current extension nears its end.

Works published before 1922 are in the public domain. There is a loophole which might be used to capture works published before 1922, but never mind that for now.

For works published In 1978 or later, the CTEA extends copyright to the life of the author plus 70 years, up from the life+50 that had been provided by the 1976 law. For corporate copyrights (such as most films) the CTEA raises the term to 95 years, up from the 75 years provided by the earlier law. European law sets corporate copyrights at a flat 70 years at most, so the earlier US term was already longer than Europe's. Most European countries don't protect sound recordings by copyright. This is considered "neighboring rights" in Europe. The term for records in Europe is 50 years, though it may be 70 years in some countries now.

The CTEA also contains some provisions modifying the music licensing system for taverns and restaurants. Some of these reforms were long overdue, but one of them, which (as I understand) totally exempts some small clubs from license fees, seems to me to be something of a blunt-instrument approach to a problem that should have been treated with more finesse--as I mentioned in the "Should Auld Copyrights be Forgot" thread some days ago.

Parish: the difference between tangible property and intangible "property" inaccurately so-called seems pretty clear to me.