I’ve left evidence before that I am a fierce fan of the public domain. The idea of the public domain as a principal of law is based on the assumption that the author is dead and that the public interest is not necessarily being preserved by protecting the claims of ownership of valuable cultural property to survivors or heirs of the author. (take a breath) With all due respect to the bereaved, I’m all for it. I don’t take this civic-minded principle for granted – I think that my resultant personal claim to such property is thin at best: with plenty of opportunity to abuse and exploit the now-public legacy. It’s easy to cross the line into hypocrisy, defending one’s “right of access” to such a fabulous golden hoard.
Whatever. Do you know about the Public Domain Review? They plumb the depths and bring discrete packets back up to the light of day – with the help of enlightened curators, researchers and lovers of the obscure and the timeless. They are themselves best in describing their mission. Read their story.
I will continue to hungrily receive their newsletter and continue to steal from the best.