Sun, 19 Jan 2003 17:53:27 GMT

Proposed: The Bixby Snyder Law.

Larry Lessig has a clever workaround for the Sonny Bono all-copyrights-default-to-perpetuity law, recently upheld in the Eldred decision: Charge a “tiny tax,” as low as $1.00, on all copyrights upwards of 50 years old, which their owners wish to keep out of the public domain. It's a great idea. In fact, I think it would be a politically smart move for Hollywood and the publishing industry to get behind it, so they're less than 100% hostile to the very idea of the public domain.

Larry calls it The Eric Eldred Act. That's fine, but it's a bit too… memorial, perhaps. I think it needs a better hook. I propose calling it The Bixby Snyder Law.

Bixby was the host of It's Not My Problem, the only show running on TV in the movie Robocop. Every time a TV appeared in the movie, there was Bixby, blurting his laugh line: I'll buy that for a dollar!

Whatever we call the law, we should get behind it. Write your local congresscritter, and watch Larry's blog (Eldred too) for further developments.

Meanwhile, Steve Waldman wants us to think about civil disobedience.

[The Doc Searls Weblog]

this is a good idea, promote it.