Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Copyright Office and Orphan Works

The US Copyright office is currently reviewing the laws as they apply to works unclaimed by their "owners" and what happens to them as they approach their deadlines for copyright extension, as well as what happens with derivative works. From Slashdot:

The question is how to treat works (books, films, software, etc.) for which the copyright owner cannot be found so that permission can be granted to republish or create derivative works. "The issue is whether orphan works are being needlessly removed from public access and their dissemination inhibited. If no one claims the copyright in a work," they write, "it appears likely that the public benefit of having access to the work would outweigh whatever copyright interest there might be."

Electronic Frontier Foundation and several other organizations are helping gather comments and input from writers, developers and other content creators to make sure these laws reflect realistic uses for information in the coming century. Check out Orphan Works for more information and to have your comments forwarded to by the March 25th deadline.


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