reclaiming the public domain. We have launched a petition to build support for the Public Domain Enhancement Act. That act would require American copyright holders to pay $1 fifty years after a work was published. If they pay the $1, the copyright continues. If they don’t, the work passes into the public domain. Historical estimates would suggest 98% of works would pass into the pubilc domain after 50 years. The Act would do a great deal to reclaim a public domain. This proposal has received a great deal of support. It is now facing some important lobbyists’ opposition. We need a public way to begin to demonstrate who the lobbyists don’t speak for. This is the first step. If you are an ally in at least this cause, please sign the petition. Please blog it, please email it, please spam it, please buy billboards about it — please do whatever you can. And most importantly, please help us explain its importance. There is a chance to do something significant here. But it will take a clearer, simpler voice than mine. [Lessig Blog]
The pendulum has swung too far in the direction of control over intellectual property rights. This is one sensible thing you can do to help push it back in the direction of balance between public and private interests.