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February 2002, Week 4


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Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 26 Feb 2002 12:13:40 -0500
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> Actually the case before the Supreme Court will NOT make
>GWTW PD until AT LEAST 2011. It involves the EXTENSION from
>75 years to 95 years so at most it will go back to 1927 unless

The extension to 95 years is for corporate authors; for individual authors the extension went from 50 years to 70 years.  Both apply to works created after Jan 1, 1978.  The point made in the original post is that GWTW (novel) would have become public domain in 1992 based on copyright law at the time of its original publication (1936 publication plus two 28 year periods).  However it was the 1976 Copyright Act (the one that took effect in 1978) that kept GWTW from becoming public domain by now *not* the Bono Act.  The 1976 Act provided for a second renewal term of 47 years (up from 28) so that the total for a work created and published before 1978 was now a total of 75 years from first publication.  This gives GWTW a public domain date of 2011 and as Jessica points out this won't be affected at all by the current case before the Supreme Court because that deals only with the Bono Act.  Details in Title 17, Chapter 3, Section 304.  (If this is a bit hard to follow you can see h!
ow much easier the 1976 Act made everything.)

However none of this was an issue in the Wind Done Gone case because the validity of the GWTW copyright was never in question (you can see the opinion at

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