Monday, May 20, 2002

Every artist is a cannibal, every poet is a thief.

"Unless you earn your living as an intellectual property lawyer, you probably don't know that the Supreme Court has granted certiorari in Eldred v. Ashcroft, a case that will test the limits of Congress's power to extend the term of copyrights."

"Back in 1998, representatives of the Walt Disney Company came to Washington looking for help. Disney's copyright on Mickey Mouse, who made his screen debut in the 1928 cartoon short "Steamboat Willie," was due to expire in 2003, and Disney's rights to Pluto, Goofy and Donald Duck were to expire a few years later. "

"Cultural giants borrow, and so do corporate giants. Ironically, many of Disney's animated films are based on Nineteenth Century public domain works, including Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Cinderella, Pinocchio, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Alice in Wonderland, and The Jungle Book (released exactly one year after Kipling's copyrights expired)."

http://writ.news.findlaw.com/commentary/20020305_sprigman.html
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