RE: RARA-AVIS: Public Domain

From: Anthony Dauer (
Date: 05 Sep 2000

Looks like Micky's fucked ...

Works Originally Created On or After January 1, 1978

A work that is created (fixed in tangible form for the first time) on or after January 1, 1978, is automatically protected from the moment of its creation and is ordinarily given a term enduring for the author's life plus an additional 70 years after the author's death. In the case of "a joint work prepared by two or more authors who did not work for hire," the term lasts for 70 years after the last surviving author's death. For works made for hire, and for anonymous and pseudonymous works (unless the author's identity is revealed in Copyright Office records), the duration of copyright will be 95 years from publication or 120 years from creation, whichever is shorter.

Works Originally Created and Published or Registered Before January 1, 1978

Under the law in effect before 1978, copyright was secured either on the date a work was published with a copyright notice or on the date of registration if the work was registered in unpublished form. In either case, the copyright endured for a first term of 28 years from the date it was secured. During the last (28th) year of the first term, the copyright was eligible for renewal. The Copyright Act of 1976 extended the renewal term from 28 to 47 years for copyrights that were subsisting on January 1, 1978, or for pre-1978 copyrights restored under the Uruguay Round Agreements Act
(URAA), making these works eligible for a total term of protection of 75 years. Public Law 105-298, enacted on October 27, 1998, further extended the renewal term of copyrights still subsisting on that date by an additional 20 years, providing for a renewal term of 67 years and a total term of protection of 95 years.

Anthony Dauer

-----Original Message----- From: []On Behalf Of Sent: Tuesday, September 05, 2000 4:23 PM
In the U.S. the copyright term is now life of the author plus 70 years, 95 years for works made for hire. However, that's a relatively recent change. For a long time the duration of copyright was 26 years, renewable for another 26. However if someone failed to renew for the second period, or their combined 52 years lapsed before the term was increased, the work would be in the public domain. If an author created a work under the old 26 + 26 rules and still held the copyright when thegeneral copyright duration was increased to the life-based criteria, they would get grandfathered in. But if their rights lapsed, they lapsed.
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