Overzealous DMCA? Elon Musk Shares Thoughts On Disney's Copyright Debate

Zinger Key Points
  • Elon Musk says current copyright law "goes absurdly far beyond protecting the original creator."
  • Disney has had several extensions of its copyright claim to the Steamboat Willie character, introduced in 1928.

An ongoing debate between politicians and a leading media company caught the attention of the world’s richest person, who weighed in recently with his opinion.

What Happened: Tesla Inc TSLA CEO Elon Musk has been known to share his opinion on hot and controversial topics on Twitter Inc TWTR, a social media platform he plans to buy.

Musk chimed in on a copyright issue between Walt Disney Co DIS and politicians.

U.S. Senator Josh Hawley has proposed a bill to strip Disney of copyright protections. If the bill were to pass, Disney would lose copyright protection of Mickey Mouse, who would enter the public domain.

“Current copyright law in general goes absurdly far beyond protecting the original creator. Overzealous DMCA is a plague on humanity,” Musk tweeted.

DMCA refers to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which involves copyrights and online content.

Related Link: Is Sen. Josh Hawley Using Disney To Fuel His Presidential Ambitions?

Why It’s Important: The tweet from Musk suggests he could support lowering the number of years that items enjoy copyright protection.

This could mean Musk supports sharing his electric vehicle and space exploration technology and copyrights with other companies in the future to support the growth of the industries.

Disney in this case has seen several extensions of its copyright claim to the Steamboat Willie character, who was first introduced in 1928 and was later turned into the Mickey Mouse brand and franchise.

The current expiration of the copyright on Steamboat Willie is set for 2024, which could put certain early versions of Mickey Mouse into the public domain and could be used by other media companies.

The copyright claim has been a hot topic as politicians have targeted Disney recently over comments made by CEO Bob Chapek over Florida legislation.

DIS Price Action: Disney shares closed Tuesday up 3.29% to $108.64, according to Benzinga Pro.

Photo: Created using images from TED Conference on Flickr 

Posted In: Bob ChapekCopyrightsDCMAElon MuskJosh HawleyMickey MouseSteamboat WillietrademarksEntertainmentGovernmentNewsRegulationsLegalGeneral

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