Originally Posted by VillageReader
Somehow copyright law should take into consider availability as a criteria ie, as long as the work is available new or has been in the last x years the copyright is valid and enforceable, otherwise the work falls into the public domain.
That's tricky, because there are too many extenuating circumstances, including the rights of the artist. If I create a novel, copyright it, then decide to sit on it for 20 years, why should you be granted the right to just take it from me?
I can't see how availability can be fairly applied to copyright... copyright gives the owner the right to decide how their product is used (or, by extension, not used). Either it is copywritten for a period of time, or it's not.
Sure, it sucks when a product could be made available and isn't... but within copyright, as all laws governing possession, there's really nothing that can be done about that. If I actually owned the Mona Lisa, I could lock it up in my basement, and no law could make me unlock that room for others to see it.