William Patry, believes it does. In his new book How to Fix Copyright published by Oxford Press he suggests that creators should be required to register their copyright after a certain period of time in order to maintain them and that rights of out-of-print books should revert to their creator. Definitely interesting concepts and perhaps a solution to the books that sit in limbo – no copies available yet not available to copy and share with those who would benefit by their use.
I first ran into The Patry Copyright Blog a few years ago, right about the time he decided to cancel it and then reinstated it for a short while to publicize his book, Moral Panics and the Copyright Wars. I found his take on copyright interesting. His opinion is backed by a prestigious history. Currently a Senior Copyright Counsel at Google Inc., he served as copyright counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives, was a Policy Planning Advisor to the Register of Copyrights, has been a law professor, and has practiced law on a private basis. Besides the two books mention above, he is the author of an eight-volume treatise on copyright law as well as a separate treatise on the fair use doctrine.
In an opinion piece published 31 Jan 2012 on CNN Opinion, Time to Update Copyright Law, Paltry states “ As we adapt to the digital age, arcane copyright laws that offer no benefit even to the current copyright holder must be reconsidered. A sensible approach would not act as an obstacle to future generations who want to create something new.”
In a December post on Bloomberg view Copyrights Are No Longer About Copies, Paltry discusses issues such as “licences vs. sales”, the inability to transfer the works you’ve purchased to another device, digital locks and other restrictions imposed on today’s purchases of creative works. This series of 3 posts is intended to be a preview of his book. Check it out!