Summary:

The Economist, writing on the MGM-Grokster case, calls for shortening of copyright terms for media companies. In America, the length of copy…

The Economist, writing on the MGM-Grokster case, calls for shortening of copyright terms for media companies. In America, the length of copyright protection has increased enormously over the past century, from around 28 years to as much as 95 years. The same trend can be seen in other countries. In June Britain signalled that it may extend its copyright term from 50 years to around 90 years.

“A first, useful step would be a drastic reduction of copyright back to its original terms–14 years, renewable once. This should provide media firms plenty of chance to earn profits, and consumers plenty of opportunity to rip, mix, burn their back catalogues without breaking the law. “

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