The American View of the Copyright Question: With a Postscript

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G. Routledge and Sons, 1880 - Copyright, International - 70 pages

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Page 18 - An Act for the Encouragement of Learning, by vesting the Copies of printed Books in the Authors or Purchasers of such Copies during the Times therein mentioned...
Page 64 - ... the use of them for his own profit, is entire and perfect, as the faculties employed, and labor bestowed, are entirely and perfectly his own. On what principle, then, can a legislature or a court determine that an author can enjoy only a temporary proper/y in his own productions?
Page 64 - Christianity of the age, that a doctrine like this is avowed by any civilized man among us. Noah Webster defines the word thus : Property. — The exclusive right of possessing, enjoying, and disposing of a thing ; ownership.
Page 65 - Limiting the time during which this right of the author shall continue to be recognized by law, is an error arising from the confusion of ideas as to the nature of the right The right being perfect, and all rights and duties being reciprocal, it is the duty of Government to make the protection co-extensive with the right, which is perpetual. When it is made legal for a man to live rent-free in a house after he has paid rent for it twenty-eight years, or to have a newspaper for nothing when he has...
Page 36 - All rights of property secured to citizens of the United States of America, by existing copyright laws of the United States, are hereby secured to the citizens and subjects of every country, the government of which secures reciprocal rights to citizens of the United States.
Page 19 - ... we see that this Act gave nothing in the way of copyright, and took away much. It gave something in making it easier for the author or the publisher to enforce his right which from the loose and piratical practices of the trade was subject to depredation, against which it had long been difficult for him to protect himself. This liability to robbery was the only need for legislation upon the subject, as far as " the encouragement of learning
Page 20 - ... beautiful enactment of Queen Anne's day, which diminished the author's rights, and laid burthens upon him and his business partner, the publisher, for the encouragement of learning. One copy of each book only has been demanded hitherto in the United States — that deposited as the book, copyright of which is claimed. But some years ago Congress passed an Act requiring a copy to be given to its own library, in default of which the author loses his copyright : a most unrighteous act. Upon what...
Page 70 - ... the present conditions of trade are maintained, American book-makers need not be especially troubled ten years hence by the competition of books manufactured in England, and that, if the various duties affecting the manufacture could be abolished, we could well spare the duty on books themselves. I can, however, imagine no state of affairs in which it would be economical or desirable to insist upon two settings of type for a book designed for different groups of English-speaking readers ; and...
Page 66 - State. The public conscience having been enlightened and quickened, it is now a subject for wonder that honest and honorable men were ever engaged in either. It is hardly credible, but it is true, that the good people of Newport, Rhode Island, had twelve ships trading at one time with Cuba and Surinam, " bringing molasses to be distilled into New England rum, which was sent to Africa in exchange for negro slaves." When the public conscience is awakened to the right of authors in their works, the...
Page 17 - Taylor it was found, by the special verdict, "that before the reign of her late majesty, Queen Anne, it was usual to purchase from authors the perpetual copyright of their books, and to assign the same from hand to hand for valuable consideration, and to make the same the subject, of family settlements, for the provision of wives and children.

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