The "Eldred Act" -- Petition
tmoritz at amnh.org
Tue Jun 3 11:10:28 PDT 2003
This is an initiative that is fundamentally consistent with
the work on the "Bodiversity Commons" that we at
AMNH Library have been involved with now for about two years.
I encourage all librarian/colleagues to consider signing...
>Date: Tue, 03 Jun 2003 13:48:16 -0400
>From: "James Boyle" <BOYLE at law.duke.edu>
>Subject: The "Eldred Act" -- Petition
>To: undisclosed-recipients: ;
>X-Spamicity: No, tests=bogofilter, spamicity=0.000000, version=0.8.0
>Impersonal Petition Missive Follows:
>Dear All, Forgive me if you have received a similar announcement from
>This is an invitation to sign a petition --
>If you go to this site, you can see the details and sign... (PLEASE DON"T
>REPLY TO ME, THE PETITION CAN ONLY BE SIGNED AT THAT SITE) Or, you can
>A number of people, most notably Larry Lessig, have been working on a
>legislative proposal that would undo one of the sad effects of copyright
>term extension -- the fact that 98% of the material covered by copyright
>is no longer being commercially exploited but remains unavailable, despite
>the fact that the owner of the copyright may well have no interest in
>continued copyright protection, and may indeed be untraceable.
>50 years after a (US) work's publication the "Eldred Act" would require
>that an annual payment of a low -- perhaps $1 -- fee be made to maintain
>the copyright. If the author wishes to maintain the copyright, he or she
>can simply pay the fee. Non payment of the fee for three years means that
>the work enters the public domain. (The form for payment of the fee would
>also list the address of a copyright agent from whom licensing permission
>could be sought, for those works which are maintained in copyright.)
><http://eldred.cc/ea_faq.html>http://eldred.cc/ea_faq.html has details,
>including a mention of the complex Berne issues.
>A couple of things are worth noting. This does not shorten copyright for
>anyone who wishes to keep asserting it. It simply lowers some of the
>enormous transaction costs that our colossally inefficient copyright
>system currently provides. (That is, we lock up most of twentieth century
>culture for more than 95 years, in order to provide actual protection and
>financial return to less than 2 percent of those works.) The Eldred Act
>simply means that some of those 98% of songs, books, poems, movies, and
>pictures will become available to the public after 50 years or so, while
>fully maintaining the interests of anyone who wishes to keep the copyright
>in force. It is an extremely moderate proposal, and I hope you can find
>it possible to support it by signing at
>Please pass this e-mail on to anyone who might be interested.
>With all best wishes,
>(Institutional affiliation for identifying purposes only)
Tom Moritz 212-769-5417
Boeschenstein Director, Library Services 212-769-5009 - FAX
American Museum of Natural History tmoritz at amnh.org
79th St. @ Central Park West http://library.amnh.org/
New York, New York 10024 (Time: GMT -5)
"It is not observed... that librarians are wiser men than others..."
-- R.W. Emerson "Spiritual Laws"
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