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Mutopia and copyright

From: Laurent Pelecq
Subject: Mutopia and copyright
Date: Sat, 2 Jun 2001 22:34:06 -0400
User-agent: Mutt/1.2.5i


I hope this is the right list to talk about the Mutopia project.

On the Mutopia site, it is told that a sheet of music is out of
copyright if the composer died more than 70 years ago and if the
editor himself died more than 70 years ago too (actually it seems that
it is 70 years plus war years).

It is simple to know when the composer died but usually there is no
editor name on music sheets but the publishing company. And even if
there were, it would be rather difficult to know when he died.

On another hand, I've read on that works with a
copyright date prior to 1922 for US authors (or 1904 for most other
countries) are in public domain.

I have several music scores with a copyright date of 1903 or less. I
would like to write them with lilypond for Mutopia. Can I assume that
editor's ornaments are in public domain?

Does anyone know if a copyright date may be used to figure out if a
music score is in public domain in the US (I'm interested in french
law too).

Thank you.

Laurent Pelecq <address@hidden>

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