Every year, on 1 January, advocates of free and open content celebrate the works of art that have entered the public domain around the world. Why New Year’s Day? Copyrighted works such as books, artworks or music are only protected for a certain number of years, and this protection ends on 1 January.
On 20 January 2022, Creative Commons, the Internet Archive, and various other Open Movement leaders will honor the amazing works published in 1926 that will enter the public domain for the first time.
Next year’s public domain celebration will be one for the history books, as approximately 400,000 sound recordings from the pre-1923 era will join the public domain for the first time in our history due to the recently enacted Music Modernization Act in the United States. That’s why this year, our theme is a Celebration of Sound.
Join us for a virtual party on 20 January 2022 at 1pm PT/4pm ET/9pm UTC with a keynote from Senator Ron Wyden, champion of the Music Modernization Act, and a host of musical acts, dancers, historians, librarians, academics, activists and other leaders from the Open world! This event will explore the rich historical context of recorded sound from its earliest days, including early jazz and blues, classical, and spoken word recordings reflecting important political and social issues of the era.
Additional sponsoring organizations include: Library Futures, SPARC, Authors Alliance, the Bioheritage Diversity Library, Public Knowledge, ARSC, the Duke Center for the Study of the Public Domain, and the Music Library Association.
The Internet Archive will also host an in-person Dance Party on Thursday, January 20, 2022 at 6pm at 300 Funston Ave in San Francisco. There you can mingle with like-minded public-domain enthusiasts while sipping a Gin Rickey, a Hanky Panky or a Singapore Sling. Dine on shrimp cocktail, cucumber sandwiches or Waldorf salad. There will be dance instructors to help you learn the 1920’s dance sensation – the Charleston. Period costumes encouraged. Let’s kick up our heels for the Public Domain!