Thursday, January 04, 2007

Creative Commons Tool to Terminate Transfers of Copyright

Here is an interesting post from the Creative Commons Weblog. They have created a tool to allow creators a way to exploit the 35 year limit in the Copyright Act on certain transfers of copyright.

Here's the introduction to the Blog posting:

Creative Commons is excited to launch a beta version of its “Returning Authors Rights: Termination of Transfer” tool. The tool has been included in ccLabs — CC’s platform for demoing new tech tools. It’s a beta demo so it doesn’t produce any useable results at this stage. We have launched it to get your feedback.

Briefly, the U.S. Copyright Act gives creators a mechanism by which they can reclaim rights that they sold or licensed away many years ago. Often artists sign away their rights at the start of their careers when they lack sophisticated negotiating experience, access to good legal advice or any knowledge of the true value of their work so they face an unequal bargaining situation. The “termination of transfer” provisions are intended to give artists a way to rebalance the bargain, giving them a “second bite of the apple.” By allowing artists to reclaim their rights, the U.S. Congress hoped that authors could renegotiate old deals or negotiate new deals on stronger footing (and hopefully with greater remuneration too!!). A longer explanation of the purpose of the “termination of transfer” provisions is set out in this FAQ.


And here's the link to a very well organized FAQ on the provision of the Copyright Act and the tool: http://labs.creativecommons.org/termination/faq.php

1 comment:

Michael Fleming said...

Let me get this right -- A computer based tool that will help remind me of something I might want to do about 35 years from now?

There's a data retention project for you...