Originally Posted by Solitaire1
Iphinome wrote as part of a post:
The problem I see with using the creator's death to determine the date for the basis of copyright is that it creates this situation (using a death plus 15 years basis that dmaul1114 mentioned as a possibility):
- Two books by two authors are released in 1950. Both authors are 25 years old when their books are released.
- One author dies in a car accident in 1951. His book enters the public domain in 1966.
- The other author passes on of natural causes in 2020 at the age of 95. His book enters the public domain in 2035.
Despite both books having been released in the same year, one has been in the public domain for 69 years before the other book enters it.
There is also the issue of having to track an author down to determine if a book is actually in the public domain. By using the original release date as the basis for copyright makes it clear when a book is under copyright and when it will enter the public domain.
The argument for sanity is all well and good and I support it but one American argument for it is that life+ copyrights are unconstitutional for the reasons I outlined above.