I came across an interesting copyright story this morning in the Irish Times.
They are reporting that Disney is losing the copyright on Mickey Mouse in 2024 as the 95 year copyright in the United States expires in 2024. The character was created in 1928 and copyright in an anonymous or pseudo-anonymous body of work exprires after 95 years.
Other Disney characters have already entered the public domain, for example Winnie the Pooh. Anyone looking to use any of these characters who enter the public domain need to be careful not to confuse the public into thinking it is associated with Disney or there could be serious legal consequence3s.
Trademarks in the United States are not time limited so Disney will have a raft of trade marks, which they will protect, in respect of products where copyright may have expired.
How would Mickey Mouse look as a logo/mascot for Terry Gorry & Co. Solicitors.
Wait a minute: I don’t think so. We don’t want to be described as a Mickey Mouse firm of solicitors!