Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Google books not pushing free content enough

You can read the series of emails between Tom - I guess google is too cool to bother with professional courtesies like surnames.  I had asked why books by Steve Fairbrain are not fully available on google books when he died in 1938.  In both the EU and the US regulators have determined that individuals
need their descendants to maintain intellectual monopoly over their
works for seventy years after their death in order to motivate people
to create works.  Thus, since it is more than seventy years since his death, his works are automatically in the public domain.

It seems that in google's attempts to please copyright holders, whose claims that it's necessary to incentivize creation ring false, they have completely failed to consider this particular avenue for works entering into the public domain. 

In case anyone wonders why I wanted to know about Steven Fairbrain's works it's due to recently rereading Mason Gross's How to Frame an Athletic Policy.