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Re: Death of a copyright holders (was: [debian-vote] Amendment: invariant-less in main (Re: GR Proposal: GFDL statement)

martin f krafft wrote:
> I am curious: what happens to his/her copyrights when a person dies,
> specifically wrt licence choice. Do people just assume that the
> deceased didn't ever want to change the licence?

When an author dies, the copyrights are inherited just like his
other property. So you can just go to the heirs and ask them to
relicense. They don't have to take the wishes of the deceased
author into account (apart from moral rights in certain situations
and jurisdictions).

The problem is that usually people don't specify copyrights in
their will. If no one pays attention when handling the estate,
several years later it may be impossible to figure out who
actually inherited the copyright. Worst case, you'll need to
wait another 70 years until the copyright expires.


Arnoud Engelfriet, Dutch & European patent attorney - Speaking only for myself
Patents, copyright and IPR explained for techies: http://www.iusmentis.com/

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