Elvis Still Causing Problems, Reported Dead

New York Times (a free registration required, sorry) reports a terrible problem: The European Copyright on recordings is only 50 years, whereas in the US it's up to 95 years. Simply put, this means that recordings[1] from the 1950s are becoming public domain in Europe.

Why bring up this issue now? Because people still listen to music from that era, Elvis most notably... And so there is still money to be made from it.

But the sad truth is, that the record companies only care about 1% of the recordings from that era. And all of the other great and not so great music can disappear, as far as they're concerned. But as copyrights expire, it means that people can share this stuff freely, and perhaps start a whole new 50s craze. And then the one who's got good copies of all of the records is going to win big time...

Come on guys, the copyright was agreed to be 50 years, and everyone thought then that was a good idea. And it's still a good idea. Elvis is dead, live with it.

[#1] However, the actual music copyright still stands at 70 years from author's death.


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