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Stephen Downes

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The Eric Eldred Act

Lawrence Lessig, Jun 03, 2003

Lawrence Lessig has launched a petition calling on the U.S. government to pass this act. Essentially, the act would require copyright holders to pay a $1 registration fee per item after a 50 year period. A failure to pay the item would result in it becoming a part of the public domain. I don't see how a fee - especially a small fee - would be any sort of hinderance to publishing companies; indeed, collating their list of holdings would be more expensive than the registration. Moreover, payment of the fee merely entrenches what is an unreasonably long period for protection.

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