[Coco] Duplicating Copy-Protected Games (Z-89)

Frank Swygert farna at att.net
Tue Jan 15 10:24:07 EST 2008

You can keep the copyright AND allow copying, of course. I too, think 
it's plain irrational to hold onto all the old code. The copyright laws 
have been screwed up by big corporations (mainly Disney) who do have 
legitimate claims. Just think if Disney lost the copyright for Mickey 
Mouse? The law needs to have a clause that ends copyright protection 
after a period of non-use (commercially). In other words, if the company 
isn't using it in something now, or doesn't use it for a period of time, 
it should expire. Something like trademark registrations -- they expire 
after a certain period if not renewed by the registrar. I wouldn't want 
to have to renew copyrights, but that might be what's needed. If a 
copyright was initially granted for a 10 year period (at least for 
software), with 10 year renewals, that would at least cover most of what 
we are discussing. Then if someone died or a (company went out of 
business) and their estate (or succeeding company, if any) didn't renew 
at least the work would go to public domain then. For literary and 
artistic works (such as music)  the initial period should probably be 
longer, a 20 or 30 year initial period, maybe, then 10 year renewals. Or 
just have it 10 years period.

Another reason for a blanket long term copyright is so that the 
government won't have to keep records -- saves tax payers money.

Oh yeah, I might mention that I "practice what I preach". The little bit 
of software I've written is available for free download from the 
cocolist site, and the books that I wrote are there too. I retain the 
copyright, but have made them freely available for the CoCo community. I 
do agree that Steve Bjork has the right NOT to release his material. I 
don't agree that it's the RIGHT thing to do, but that's his perogative. 
If it's available for sale though, post prices and order information for 
those willing to purchase.

Frank Swygert
Publisher, "American Motors Cars" 
Magazine (AMC)
For all AMC enthusiasts
(free download available!)

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