Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Public Domain Day

Safety Last! is a 1923 American silent film
“Whose woods these are, I think I”—whoa! We can’t quote any more of Robert Frost’s “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening,” because it is still under copyright as this magazine goes to press. But come January 1, 2019, we, you, and everyone in America will be able to quote it at length on any platform. At midnight on New Year’s Eve, all works first published in the United States in 1923 will enter the public domain. It has been 21 years since the last mass expiration of copyright in the U.S. Smithsonian Magazine
Unfortunately, the fact that works from 1923 are legally available does not mean they are actually available. Many of these works are lost entirely or literally disintegrating (as with old films and recordings), evidence of what long copyright terms do to the conservation of cultural artifacts. For the works that have survived, however, their long-awaited entry into the public domain is still something to celebrate. Duke Law
How to Download the Books That Just Entered the Public Domain