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British MPs support copyright extension for sound recordings

[JURIST] The British House of Commons Culture, Media and Sport Committee [official website] released a report [text] Wednesday recommending that the government "bring forward proposals" to the European Commission "for an extension of copyright term for sound recordings to at least 70-years." The current British audio recordings copyright limit is limited to 50 years from the time of the recording. The report contradicts the 2006 Gowers Review of Intellectual Property [PDF text], which found that "it is not clear that extension of term would benefit musicians and performers very much in practice," while potentially having a negative effect on the balance of trade. The committee report did not attempt to dispute the Gowers report, but instead emphasized the committee's belief that a "copyright represent a moral right of a creator to choose to retain ownership and control of their own intellectual property."

Current British law grants creators of literary, dramatic, musical, or artistic works 70 years of copyright protection after the creator's death. US laws currently limit copyright terms of audio recordings to 95 years following its release. AP has more.

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