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In the USA, January 1st 2019 will be the first time in 21 years that works with expired copyright will enter the Public Domain again.

smithsonianmag.com/arts-cultur

@johl wait… that would mean… that when I publicly shared the score of "I Got Rhythm" last year under the impression that its copyright expired in 2017 because its author, George Gershwin, died in 1937… was piracy?

*quickly unpublishes a lot of stuff*

@daniel_bohrer In the US yes, in the EU, no. Isn't copyright fun?

@daniel_bohrer But on the other hand, US government works enter the Public Domain automatically in the US, but not in the EU.

@johl wait, I was wrong. "I Got Rhythm" was published in 1930, Gershwin died in 1937.

At publication time, the maximum copyright term was 56 years after publication, i.e. expiry would be in 1986.

The 1976 Act changed the term to 75 years after publication, or 50 years after author's death, whichever is earlier, i.e. expiry in 1987 (by author date). So it was already in the Public Domain when the 1997 Copyright Act went into effect. \o/

@johl ("by author date" should have been "by author's death date".)

@johl but the headline is still wrong! Works who were published after 1922 but whose author died before 1947 entered Public Domain on 1.1.2018, which is clearly in the last 21 years, contrary to what the headline states.

[N.B. for the 1998 Copyright Acts without 1977 Act:
70y p.m.a.: author died between 2017–70=1947 and 2017–50=1957;
Publication date + 95y: works published between 2017–95 = 1922 and 2017–75=1942]

*Wikidata noises*

For example: wikidata.org/wiki/Q1715890

@johl but given that it took me so long to find that loop hole, I suspect that the amount of works for which this hole applies to is much smaller than the amount of works that would normally become public domain on January 1st each year. And the authors of that article also probably didn't think of the possibility for such a hole.

Yeah, as you said. Fun fun fun. Historically grown fun.

@johl this was my first actual use for a #wikidata query, and it was fun learning to SPARQL from the provided examples :3 Thank you for the nerdsniping! :3 Sorry for the many mentions though…

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