[Asterisk-Users] MOH: Copyright issues?

mattf mattf at vicimarketing.com
Fri Mar 19 13:51:50 MST 2004

Thank you Disney and the late congressman Sonny Bono for unlimited copyright
extensions. Every time we get close to having old works fall into the public
domain, the large hollywood lobby spreads it's cash around and buys enough
votes to extend copyrights yet again. There aren't any countries that I know
of that have as long of a copyright expiration as the USA does.

When Copyrights were first addressed in this country they were defined at a
20 year expiration and the US constitution guaranteed the following:

"To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited
Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective
Writings and Discoveries"

I doubt that the framers of the constitution envisioned 120 years as being

I apologize for rambling, but this is something that touches to many aspects
of business, and a law suit for copyrighted songs being played on your
on-hold music for your conference calling system or your ACD is not
something that you want to waste your time or money on.


-----Original Message-----
From: Bob Klepfer [mailto:bob at photon-x.com]
Sent: Friday, March 19, 2004 3:27 PM
To: asterisk-users at lists.digium.com
Subject: Re: [Asterisk-Users] MOH: Copyright issues?

Alex Volkov wrote:

>AFAIK, in US the copyright expires 25 years after the original copyright
>holder (author, recording artist, but not sure about an assignee) dies, or
>after ~70 years from the date of creation (in cases where a corporation
>holds a copyright for sure), but do not hold your breath, as the companies
>like Disney constantly lobby to extend this period, otherwise you would
>certainly see Mickey Mouse cartoons in public domain by now.
>As far as royalties are concerned, I suppose MOH in US  for some company
>could be considered on par with a bar, which translates to pennies per
>played song, as long as no more than ~100 people are listening to it at
>But please do not take this a as sound law advice, as I am no lawyer ;-).

Unfortunately, it's much more heinous: 70 years *from the death of the 
last remaining creator*, if not a work for hire, anonymous, or 
pseudonymonous work.  If it is a work for hire, 95 from first 
publication, or 120 from creation, whichever ends first.  Whether is the 
work was in the first or second period of copyright (first 28 years) 
before 1978 changes some things.....I don't know - it takes a lawyer or 
a bought-and-paid-for politian to read this crap.  Too many words, not 
enough equations :)



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