Supreme Court Upholds 20-Year Copyright Extension

Posted in News on January 15, 2003
In a 7-2 decision, the United States Supreme Court, in the case Eldred v. Ashcroft, has upheld the 20-year extension Congress granted to all existing copyrights in 1998 under what is known as the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act.

The plaintiffs in the case had argued that retroactive use of the extension violated intent of the Constitution’s giving Congress the authority to “promote the progress of science” through the issuing of copyrights for “limited times.”

BMI President and CEO Frances W. Preston issued the following statement in regard to the decision: “The Supreme Court decision marks a victory in the struggle we began almost 10 years ago to bring the term of copyright in the United States up to the world standard of life of the author plus 70 years. It validates our position in the Congressional campaign to achieve passage of the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act. The position was restated in the amicus brief we submitted to the Supreme Court together with others representing music copyright creators and owners. The Court's unambiguous decision is a landmark in the battle to protect the works of every songwriter, composer and music publisher and will have far reaching effects.”

SOURCENews TAGS Advocacy Rights Management


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