Mark Helprin has a truly odd commentary in the Times today – complaining that his copyrights will be stripped from his heirs seventy years after he trips the light fantastic. Other property can’t be stolen like this. He faults the framers for mistakenly believing ideas will be served if rights are held for a limited time (though he gives them credit for allowing Congress to extend them indefinitely). He likens the public domain to “nationalization” and unfair seizure of property.Shouldn’t his right to own his words persist lo unto to ages?
Just be sure to leave a forwarding address, Mark. Otherwise it’s gonna be hard to keep your deathless prose available to readers.
Or just for kicks, check out this pastiche on copyright that uses clips from a company that has exploited our shared cultural heritage, then slapped our hands for wanting it back.