Public Domain Day
January 1 was (and is every year) "Public Domain Day," the day that the copyright terms on works from given authors expire (according to year of death) and enter the public domain. Based on the copyright rules that were in place at the time they were created (and until 1978), these works should have entered the public domain on Saturday: Waiting for Godot, Lord of the Flies, The Doors of Perception by Aldous Huxley, Horton Hears a Who!, the first two volumes of The Lord of the Rings, and the films On the Waterfront, Rear Window, Dial M for Murder, Seven Samurai and Disney's 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.
BUT: the rules have changed over the years, and copyright on all those works has been extended. So here in the US, none of these have entered the public domain. In fact, no works at all will enter the public domain via expired copyright this year. Or for the next several years. Wait til Public Domain Day in 2019, though! [via Techdirt]