Posted by Petra on August 29, 1998 at 13:09:33:
In Reply to: Into The Wilderness posted by Robert on August 28, 1998 at 20:16:32:
: Hi everyone. I've read several posts on this book and while I have not
: read it [or intend to] I've got a question about ownership. Most
: popular authors and their characters are owned by family members.
: Did this author pay royalties or are our favorite people public
: domain? If this was covered before I missed it. Thanks, Robert
Cooper's work and characters should not be covered by copyright any more.
Copyrights do extend to derivative works that are based on copyrighted work, but under the U.S. Copyright Act they do not extend for an unlimited period of time. While the duration of copyright protection for works created on or after January 1, 1978 is the life of the author plus 50 years, older copyrights were extended by the U.S. Copyright Act (as revised in 1976) for a term no longer than 75 years from the date the copyright was originally secured.
This is why older works can be republished or used as a basis for new works without paying royalties.
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