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GD_Kimble's avatar

Where can I find a list of intellectual property that has fallen into public domain?

Asked by GD_Kimble (2277points) October 1st, 2007

I’m interested in reviving some old, now defunct, comic-book characters, and writing/marketing new versions of them.

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5 Answers

bpeoples's avatar

archive.org has a nice collection of stuff.

However, I think anything published after some date in the 1920’s may be difficult to clear.

bpeoples's avatar

Oh, and loc.gov is going to have a lot of the info you need to generate the list of things that are in public domain =)

snej's avatar

If something is public domain, either it was never copyrighted or its copyright expired. It’s pretty safe to say that any comic book ever commercially published was copyrighted. And copyright terms keep being extended, so the only works that have expired are those published before the mid-1920s… which is at least ten years before the first superhero (Superman) appeared. So if by “comic book characters” you mean “superheroes”, you’re out of luck.

(Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer, though I have read a lot of essays by Lawrence Lessig, who is both a lawyer and an expert on copyright law.)

carlosp's avatar

A great online resource for all questions about copyright is the Stanford University Copyright and Fair Use Center.

damianmann's avatar

Why not check a Golden Age comic website…or, Google something about the history , or the first, comic super heroes?

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