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1923 and free! Once copyrighted works newly entering the public domain

Who are we?

We are books originally copyrighted in 1923.  We could have entered the public domain in 1998, but the Sonny Bono ('Copyright Term Extension') Act locked us away behind a wall of copyright restriction for an additional 20 years.  On January 1, 2019, this copyright extension expired on a whole group of works, and so we finally entered the public domain.  Above you will find a wide sampling from Carlson Library's shelves that fall into this group.  Why don't you check us out?  Get some ideas from the graphic on this page!   

As the Washington Post explained in 2013, 

Without the term extension, works published between 1922 and 1941 would have fallen into the public domain between 1978 and 1997.  

Copyrighted works from the 1920s were scheduled to begin falling into the public domain again in 1998, and copyright interests wanted Congress to stop that from happening.

That means that the 1976 and 1998 extensions have deprived a generation of readers of easy access to books from the 1920s, 1930s, 1940s and 1950s.

On January 1, 2020, long-forgotten books copyrighted in 1924 are scheduled to enter the public domain.   And so on  . . .