Originally Posted by HarryT
I'm a little puzzled by this. Conan Doyle died in 1930; he's therefore in the life+70 public domain. Nobody needs anyone's "permission" to write a Sherlock Holmes story, as the enormous number of new Holmes stories illustrates. What was this "permission" that Mr. Horowitz received, I wonder?
It's the weird US copyright laws. In the US about 10 of the short stories are still in copyright.
There is currently a legal case going on
to decide just this issue: Whether anyone needs permission, even in the US, to write/publish/produce a Sherlock Holmes story.
It's like the Happy Birthday copyright. IMO it's legal extortion, because for any individual it's cheaper to pay the licence fee than to take it to court.