Hartwig Thomas, Member of Digitale Allmend just send a very important comment to UNESCOs effort to collect copyright laws on their website (to antipiracy(at)unesco.org, because the proposed copyright.law(at)unesco.org doesn’t work).
Although I am somewhat surprised that an organization dealing with culture and education should use such a heavily connotated term as “piracy” and although I do not agree that all aspects of the WAPO effort are beneficial for the world’s cultural heritage, I applaud the plan to collect 150 copyright laws on the WAPO website by UNESCO.
Please include a world-wide public domain calculator!
I.e. a legally reliable way to determine, whether a cultural work is part of the free cultural heritage (which is the main concern of UNESCO!) based on the date and place of its publication and the date of death of its author, due to expiration of the copyright protection.
Such a calculator would have to take into account that
some works may have been in the Public Domain due to an earlier regulation and were not reprivatized when the law last changed, some countries have stated particular extensions for the time of the second world war and thus the application of the rule of 70 year after the author’s death may be extended by up to 12 years.