On this Martin Luther King Day in the U.S., consider the consequences of recent changes to copyright law described in this story in the Boston Globe:
... [D]on't plan on celebrating King's birthday tomorrow by going to your local video store to buy a copy of "Eyes on the Prize." Thanks to rights restrictions on archival material used in the documentary, the 14-hour chronicle tracing the civil rights movement from the Montgomery bus boycotts in the 1950s to the rise of black mayors in the 1980s can no longer be released in new editions or shown on television. PBS's right to air the film expired in 1993. Meanwhile, the VHS edition has gone out of print and a DVD release would require relicensing. (Complete sets of used videos are currently going for as much as $1,000 on Amazon.)
The problem goes beyond one documentary....
[Via Dave Farber's IP list. As of this posting, bids on eBay for the two 7-tape, 14-episode box sets of Eyes on the Prize, including both part I and part II, are for $220 and $660.]
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