Jump to content



Sign up for a free account to remove the pop-up ads

Signing up for an account is fast and free. As a member you can join in the conversation, enter contests and remove the pop-up ads that guests get. Click here to create your free account.

Photo
- - - - -

Is a show Public Domain?


This topic has been archived. This means that you cannot reply to this topic.
69 replies to this topic

#1 of 70 OFFLINE   Regulus

Regulus

    Screenwriter



  • 2,261 posts
  • Join Date: Nov 07 2006

Posted June 16 2009 - 02:42 AM

Every now and then a Rumor will come out that says a Show has become Public Domain, which basically means anybody who has a copy may legally copy and distribute it in whatever manner they please.Posted Image Yesterday I received such a Rumor concerning a certain World War II Drama. Naturally I am treating it with a grain of salt, because past experience has taught me that 90 percent of whatever Scuttlebutt I hear on the Grapevine is BaloneyPosted Image , and of the remaining 10 percent, 90 percent is GROSSLY Exagerated!Posted Image

Nevertheless I have to ask, is there a way to find out IF a certain Shoe has indeed become Public Domain? Such a Database will certainly make the differance between purchasing a Legitamate Copy Posted Image or a Bootleg.Posted Image

DVD Collection Inventory: TV Episodes - 36,417 :biggrin: ( 757 Series ) :biggrin: Movies - 2,424  :biggrin: Serial Chapters - 1,201 :B)


#2 of 70 OFFLINE   Jeff Gatie

Jeff Gatie

    Lead Actor



  • 6,530 posts
  • Join Date: Aug 19 2002

Posted June 16 2009 - 02:56 AM

In most cases it doesn't matter. If the original is copy protected, then breaking copy protection is the problem. No matter what the copyright is on the content, circumventing the copy protection scheme is against the law. IN 99% of the cases, bootlegs are illegal. Period.

#3 of 70 OFFLINE   Scott_F_S

Scott_F_S

    Second Unit



  • 408 posts
  • Join Date: Jun 15 2002

Posted June 16 2009 - 03:19 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Gatie
IN 99% of the cases, bootlegs are illegal. Period.

In 100% of cases, bootlegs are illegal -- by definition. If it's not illegal, it's not a bootleg.

#4 of 70 OFFLINE   Jeff Gatie

Jeff Gatie

    Lead Actor



  • 6,530 posts
  • Join Date: Aug 19 2002

Posted June 16 2009 - 03:24 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott_F_S
In 100% of cases, bootlegs are illegal -- by definition. If it's not illegal, it's not a bootleg.

Thank you Capt. Obvious. Posted Image

#5 of 70 OFFLINE   Neil Brock

Neil Brock

    Screenwriter



  • 2,115 posts
  • Join Date: Apr 29 2009

Posted June 16 2009 - 04:01 AM

A simple search online at the Library of Congress website will give you your answer most of the time. In some instances, not, as they do not have every single copyrighted show listed on their site.

#6 of 70 OFFLINE   Regulus

Regulus

    Screenwriter



  • 2,261 posts
  • Join Date: Nov 07 2006

Posted June 16 2009 - 10:15 AM

I went to the Library of Congress, unfortunately WHERE DO I GO FROM THERE? I Keyed in the name of that rumored TV Show, only to get something about a Christmas Carol.

Any Suggestions?Posted Image

DVD Collection Inventory: TV Episodes - 36,417 :biggrin: ( 757 Series ) :biggrin: Movies - 2,424  :biggrin: Serial Chapters - 1,201 :B)


#7 of 70 OFFLINE   David Rain

David Rain

    Screenwriter



  • 1,095 posts
  • Join Date: May 07 2005

Posted June 16 2009 - 10:28 AM

Perhaps it would help if we actually knew WHAT SHOW you're actually talking about. What's with the secrecy ?
Still Turning the Beat Around at Our Cool New Pad

Retro Remixes

 


#8 of 70 OFFLINE   Regulus

Regulus

    Screenwriter



  • 2,261 posts
  • Join Date: Nov 07 2006

Posted June 16 2009 - 11:40 AM

The show is 12 o Clock High. Someone mentioned on Amazon.com's Blog that this show is now Public Domain. (Bear in mind I am treating this as a FALSE RUMOR unless I get word from a Reliable Source that it is otherwise). I have heard many other Rumors about other shows, the rumors have turned out to be False. One website says they have "Official Versions" but I DO NOT TRUST THEM! (Besides they are asking a Price for each Season that makes SKY KING look like a Wally World Bargain Binner!)

DVD Collection Inventory: TV Episodes - 36,417 :biggrin: ( 757 Series ) :biggrin: Movies - 2,424  :biggrin: Serial Chapters - 1,201 :B)


#9 of 70 OFFLINE   Mark Talmadge

Mark Talmadge

    Screenwriter



  • 2,379 posts
  • Join Date: Jul 21 2005

Posted June 16 2009 - 11:40 AM

Bootlegs are illegal ... period. It's why they're are bootlegs. That's just a simple way of saying smuggle.

Also don't believe the rumors. 99% of the time they're not true.

#10 of 70 OFFLINE   Neil Brock

Neil Brock

    Screenwriter



  • 2,115 posts
  • Join Date: Apr 29 2009

Posted June 16 2009 - 12:09 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Regulus
I went to the Library of Congress, unfortunately WHERE DO I GO FROM THERE? I Keyed in the name of that rumored TV Show, only to get something about a Christmas Carol.

Any Suggestions?Posted Image

WebVoyage

#11 of 70 OFFLINE   Jon Martin

Jon Martin

    Screenwriter



  • 2,219 posts
  • Join Date: Sep 19 2002

Posted June 16 2009 - 12:47 PM

Just to clarify, a bootleg is something that has copyright owners that is released without their involvement. They shouldn't be discussed.

Something in the public domain has had the copyright expire or not renewed (usually as an accident). It doesn't mean that it is free to make copies of. Most of the time, the makers of the film or TV series would have rather have kept the rights. It means that, legally, there is nothing they can do about it.

While I'm not familiar with 12 O'CLOCK HIGH, according to the IMDB, it was produced by 20th Century Fox and Quinn Martin. So, it is very doubtful that it is in the public domain.

#12 of 70 OFFLINE   Mark Talmadge

Mark Talmadge

    Screenwriter



  • 2,379 posts
  • Join Date: Jul 21 2005

Posted June 16 2009 - 03:54 PM

The pinned topic only says that the discussion of websites that sell that material are prohibited, not general discussion. As long as websites aren't named, is what I get from the pinned topic.

This particular topic creator wanted to know if there was a resource on how to tell the difference. You can tell because they only make it available as a complete series.

The one way you can be sure is to only buy from websites that you trust. When in doubt just do a search for "www.thiswebsite.com complaints" and if there are any, results will pop up.

You can be sure that websites such as Amazon, Overstock, Target, Barnes and Noble, Best Buy, Borders are all reputable websites. Always do your research if you're unsure of a commerce website.

There are some sites such as:

Ripoff Report: By Consumers, For Consumers
Complaints.com - Consumers in Control
ConsumerAffairs.com: Knowledge is Power! Consumer news, reviews, complaints, resources, safety recalls
Federal Trade Commission
United States and Canada BBB Consumer and Business Reviews, Reports, Ratings, Complaints and Accredited Business Listings

#13 of 70 OFFLINE   chas speed

chas speed

    Second Unit



  • 397 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 28 2007

Posted June 16 2009 - 04:16 PM

The whole public domain thing is weird. How in the hell did some episodes of the most popular shows of the 60's (Bonanza, Beverly Hillbillies) become public domain? It never seems to make much sense.

#14 of 70 OFFLINE   Regulus

Regulus

    Screenwriter



  • 2,261 posts
  • Join Date: Nov 07 2006

Posted June 16 2009 - 06:02 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neil Brock

Cute! It only goes back to 1978. Posted Image

HOW DO YOU GO BACK FURTHER!Posted Image

DVD Collection Inventory: TV Episodes - 36,417 :biggrin: ( 757 Series ) :biggrin: Movies - 2,424  :biggrin: Serial Chapters - 1,201 :B)


#15 of 70 OFFLINE   Yee-Ming

Yee-Ming

    Producer



  • 4,330 posts
  • Join Date: Apr 04 2002
  • Real Name:Yee Ming Lim

Posted June 16 2009 - 06:37 PM

Copyright laws vary from country to country, and since I'm not an American lawyer, my understanding of US copyright laws may be off, but IIRC registration per se does not 'create' the copyright, that subsists upon original creation of the artistic work. Registration tracks ownership, and the ability to sue infringers. This is unlike registered trademarks or patents, which do not come into existence at all without application and registration.

Also, IIRC a few years ago your Congress extended the lifetime of copyright in movies to 95 years from creation, so I daresay hardly anything of interest has had its copyright expire yet. (Ironically, some years ago I was handling an infringement action here, when copyright was still only 50 years, and one potentially problematic title was Snow White, which being created in 1937 had already passed the 50-yr mark.)

The problem then arises that in countries with shorter copyright terms (e.g. 50 yrs), something might be public domain there, yet still enjoy copyright in the US. Copies that are therefore legal there, might not be in the US. But you'll need to ask an American copyright lawyer on that (where are Messrs Reuben and Nicholls?)

#16 of 70 OFFLINE   sestamuch

sestamuch

    Stunt Coordinator



  • 246 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 15 2009

Posted June 16 2009 - 06:59 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Talmadge
The pinned topic only says that the discussion of websites that sell that material are prohibited, not general discussion. As long as websites aren't named, is what I get from the pinned topic.

This particular topic creator wanted to know if there was a resource on how to tell the difference. You can tell because they only make it available as a complete series.

The one way you can be sure is to only buy from websites that you trust. When in doubt just do a search for "www.thiswebsite.com complaints" and if there are any, results will pop up.

You can be sure that websites such as Amazon, Overstock, Target, Barnes and Noble, Best Buy, Borders are all reputable websites. Always do your research if you're unsure of a commerce website.

There are some sites such as:

Ripoff Report: By Consumers, For Consumers
Complaints.com - Consumers in Control
ConsumerAffairs.com: Knowledge is Power! Consumer news, reviews, complaints, resources, safety recalls
Federal Trade Commission
United States and Canada BBB Consumer and Business Reviews, Reports, Ratings, Complaints and Accredited Business Listings

Excellent info Mark.

#17 of 70 OFFLINE   RaveenaJust

RaveenaJust

    Auditioning



  • 10 posts
  • Join Date: Mar 02 2009

Posted June 16 2009 - 07:57 PM

Every now and then a Rumor will come out
Posted ImagePosted Image

#18 of 70 OFFLINE   Joseph DeMartino

Joseph DeMartino

    Lead Actor



  • 8,303 posts
  • Join Date: Dec 31 1969
  • Real Name:Joseph DeMartino
  • LocationFlorida

Posted June 16 2009 - 11:12 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by chas speed
The whole public domain thing is weird. How in the hell did some episodes of the most popular shows of the 60's (Bonanza, Beverly Hillbillies) become public domain? It never seems to make much sense.

Mostly due to clerical errors, believe it or not. Copyright can be renewed, but you have to go through the process of renewing it. Since each episode of a TV is an individual filmed "work" it is individually copyrighted. When renewal time comes along the studio will submit a list of all the episodes for a given season (since they expire in the same year.) If someone leaves out an episode, or gets the name wrong, the copyright can expire. IIRC, there have been a few cases where the studios (or other creators) have been able to appeal and have copyright restored where they can show that a reasonable effort was made to renew.

Regards,

Joe

#19 of 70 OFFLINE   Regulus

Regulus

    Screenwriter



  • 2,261 posts
  • Join Date: Nov 07 2006

Posted June 17 2009 - 01:17 AM

There needs to be some kind of Database available where one can look up a Title and find out if it is Public Domain or not, that needs to be easy to access. All the sites I have tried to access are so huge and complicated that it's virtually IMPOSSIBLE to get the Information you want. As it stand now all I have gotten is a runaround!Posted Image

DVD Collection Inventory: TV Episodes - 36,417 :biggrin: ( 757 Series ) :biggrin: Movies - 2,424  :biggrin: Serial Chapters - 1,201 :B)


#20 of 70 OFFLINE   Jon Martin

Jon Martin

    Screenwriter



  • 2,219 posts
  • Join Date: Sep 19 2002

Posted June 17 2009 - 02:09 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Talmadge
You can be sure that websites such as Amazon, Overstock, Target, Barnes and Noble, Best Buy, Borders are all reputable websites. Always do your research if you're unsure of a commerce website.

Yes, but they often do carry bootlegs, without even knowing it. There are several bootleggers that release legit looking titles of films that they don't have the rights to. I noticed one title releasing next week I was interested in, until I saw it was by that company.

Quote:
There needs to be some kind of Database available where one can look up a Title and find out if it is Public Domain or not

There are websites out there that sell public domain films to companies, but there isn't a databse.

It isn't as simple as creating a list. Often, rights to films can get renewed (IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE being an example). Many early Hitchcock films are thought by some to be in the public domain and released by countless DVD companies but as threads in the DVD section will tell you, they really aren't.

In some countries, films are owned by one company, in others, no one has the rights.

Sometimes what puts a film in the public domain is as simple as the producers forgetting to put a copyright logo and the year on the credits. That is what happened to NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD.

But to go back to the original question, a show produced by FOX isn't likely to be in the public domain.


Back to TV on DVD and Blu-ray



Forum Nav Content I Follow