Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Happy Birthday Donald Duck, (1 day late)

Tuesday was the 75th birthday anniversary of Disney's cartoon character Donald Duck.

Before the Copyright Term Extension Act (CTEA) of 1998, Disney's rights to the duck were set to expire in 2009. As CTEA generally extended copyrights by 20 years that keeps Donald on Disney's plantation through the end of 2029. Born June 9, 1934, Donald will be 95 years old, barring further copyright extentions, when he finally enters public domain.

I am not a fan of CTEA. The act was challenged before the Supreme Court, Eldred v. Ashcroft, in 2003, but was unfortunately upheld. For those interested, here is one lawyer's anti-CTEA commenary written ahead of the Eldred v. Ashcroft ruling.

Happy birthday anyhow Donald. It isn't your fault that you have been held since birth in bondage with your emancipation repeatedly pushed into the future. You just have to believe that someday you will be free to speak freely about your time with Disney and that annoying goody-good mouse.

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