Doctor Who Comics Won't Be Distributed In Britain

Doctor Who Comics Won't Be Distributed In Britain

Doctor Who Comic Cover IDW

Doctor Who, a British series, and Titan Comics, a British publisher, can't actually print a new comic book for British bookstores.

To the average person, copyright and licensing agreements are things you might vaguely think about while installing computer software, but for international publishers it holds massive consequences. Take the Doctor Who comic book, which is leaving IDW for the British-based Titan Comics in time for Peter Capaldi's debut as the Doctor. From all appearances, the decision makes sense: Titan Comics is a British company, Doctor Who is a British series, and British creators will be hired to tell all-new British stories. Unfortunately, license agreements are even more wibbly wobbly than the timeline itself, because Titan Comics cannot legally distribute Doctor Who books to British comic shops.

The problem, which existed even when IDW controlled the Doctor Who license, is that The Doctor Who Magazine holds comic book distribution rights. Rumors had been circulating that Titan Comics would buy the publication, neatly circumventing the matter, but according to BBC Worldwide this hasn't happened. That means Titan Comics will have to distribute Doctor Who to North American bookstores, who in turn can sell the books to British bookstores. It's like watching the effects of a paradox from outside of time, but you don't want to touch it just in case it destroys the universe.

Sure, this is pretty much what British shops needed to do when IDW ran the show, but IDW is based out of San Diego; racking up shipping charges is a little more understandable in that context. At the end of the day, British Doctor Who fans will still get their Doctor Who comics, but delays and mark-ups will remain an issue. Sadly, this is one problem the Doctor can't just Sonic Screwdriver his way out of, at least not yet.

Source: Bleeding Cool

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Aaaaand this is why IP law needs to be gotten rid of, or at least /severely/ limited and made so the only possible way to transfer it is from the original creator to the public domain. No more of this selling to corporations who then hoard it in perpetuity crap.

I'm sure you meant 'Britain' or 'the UK' in that title -_-

Owyn_Merrilin:
Aaaaand this is why IP law needs to be gotten rid of, or at least /severely/ limited and made so the only possible way to transfer it is from the original creator to the public domain. No more of this selling to corporations who then hoard it in perpetuity crap.

You can blame Disney for the reason why it takes so long for something to go public domain in the US, and coincidentally many provisions were applied in Europe as well. When the US was founded the original copyright laws had it that a work can enter public domain after 14 years. It was then amended to being 14 years with a 14 year renewal period, then to 28 years with 14 years after renewal; after that it was changed to 28 years with 28 years after renewal. Then came the big one, the Copyright Act of 1976 (same act where Fair Use was first established) which extended the time to be 75 years to life of the author, plus another 50 years after, with renewals being taken out.
Finally we are at where we are today, the Copyright Term Extension Act of 1998, also known as the Mickey Mouse Protection Act because Disney lobbied like crazy for it.

To quote the wiki on it "The Act extended these terms to life of the author plus 70 years and for works of corporate authorship to 120 years after creation or 95 years after publication, whichever endpoint is earlier. Copyright protection for works published prior to January 1, 1978, was increased by 20 years to a total of 95 years from their publication date." In this Act Fair Use was also not updated and as a result we have the legal gray areas we do today since Fair Use has not been modernized since it's original ratification back in 1976.

BrotherRool:
I'm sure you meant 'Britain' or 'the UK' in that title -_-

I did. Fixed.

Neronium:

Owyn_Merrilin:
Aaaaand this is why IP law needs to be gotten rid of, or at least /severely/ limited and made so the only possible way to transfer it is from the original creator to the public domain. No more of this selling to corporations who then hoard it in perpetuity crap.

You can blame Disney for the reason why it takes so long for something to go public domain in the US, and coincidentally many provisions were applied in Europe as well. When the US was founded the original copyright laws had it that a work can enter public domain after 14 years. It was then amended to being 14 years with a 14 year renewal period, then to 28 years with 14 years after renewal; after that it was changed to 28 years with 28 years after renewal. Then came the big one, the Copyright Act of 1976 (same act where Fair Use was first established) which extended the time to be 75 years to life of the author, plus another 50 years after, with renewals being taken out.
Finally we are at where we are today, the Copyright Term Extension Act of 1998, also known as the Mickey Mouse Protection Act because Disney lobbied like crazy for it.

To quote the wiki on it "The Act extended these terms to life of the author plus 70 years and for works of corporate authorship to 120 years after creation or 95 years after publication, whichever endpoint is earlier. Copyright protection for works published prior to January 1, 1978, was increased by 20 years to a total of 95 years from their publication date." In this Act Fair Use was also not updated and as a result we have the legal gray areas we do today since Fair Use has not been modernized since it's original ratification back in 1976.

Believe me, I know. The Mickey Mouse Protection Act is one of the worst things Hollywood has ever done, and what's sad is you just know we'll get a new one once Steamboat Willie hits the new limit. Perpetual copyright in all but name.

Owyn_Merrilin:

Believe me, I know. The Mickey Mouse Protection Act is one of the worst things Hollywood has ever done, and what's sad is you just know we'll get a new one once Steamboat Willie hits the new limit. Perpetual copyright in all but name.

Pretty much, but with how long it'll take now we won't be seeing that in the news about Disney lobbying for another extension until possibly 2050 or above (since Steamboat Willy first came out in 1928). Really what's also bad is the fact that Fair Use is probably never gonna be updated either, and if it is I don't see it updating until a decade or so, and more and more things are gonna fall under this new gray area because the Fair Use clause is very outdated in a lot of ways.

Fanghawk:

BrotherRool:
I'm sure you meant 'Britain' or 'the UK' in that title -_-

I did. Fixed.

Oh thanks! I apologise for my grumpyness

Yet another example of how copyright ruins it for the end user, while benefiting the big business IP owner. Thanks for the creative world we live in Disney.

Adzma:
Yet another example of how copyright ruins it for the end user, while benefiting the big business IP owner. Thanks for the creative world we live in Disney.

You'd think they're all about smiles and happiness, but then you see this and what's shown in the thread. *sighs* Clichéd sentence, but applicable: This is why we can't have nice things.

Copyright law is such an incomprehensible clusterfuck that nobody understands it, not even copyright lawyers.

Is a whole bunch of words missing from the article for every one else as well? I did get the gist of the article but there are a lot of missing words and stuff.

Captcha: slow milenky lizards
Um Captcha, are you sure you don't mean "slow malenky lizards?"

EDIT: Nevermind as soon as my post went through it was fixed. Must have just been a glitch.

Ye gods! This is as if we Swedes were forced to import our smörgåsbord.

DeimosMasque:
Is a whole bunch of words missing from the article for every one else as well? I did get the gist of the article but there are a lot of missing words and stuff.

Captcha: slow milenky lizards
Um Captcha, are you sure you don't mean "slow malenky lizards?"

EDIT: Nevermind as soon as my post went through it was fixed. Must have just been a glitch.

Are you using Google Chrome as your browser? Google Chrome did an update that broke a lot of sites, and it's having an especially bad time with the Escapist. I've already told the Tech Team about it.

Neronium:

Are you using Google Chrome as your browser? Google Chrome did an update that broke a lot of sites, and it's having an especially bad time with the Escapist. I've already told the Tech Team about it.

Yup was using Chrome. Good call there.

OT: That does suck, especially since the Doctor Who comics by IDW were great and I hope the new ones will be as well.

Interesting. Could never get into Doctor Who, and I find the fanbase a tad obnoxious. That said, what a shame. Seems surreal that it can't be distributed in Britain where the show originated.

Owyn_Merrilin:
Aaaaand this is why IP law needs to be gotten rid of, or at least /severely/ limited and made so the only possible way to transfer it is from the original creator to the public domain. No more of this selling to corporations who then hoard it in perpetuity crap.

This has nothing to do with IP law. It has to do with bad management of licensing agreements. Ditto to most people in this thread. BBC the one that gave the blanket license to Dr. Who Magazine, you should be blaming them, this would change nothing, even with a law change.

Baldr:

Owyn_Merrilin:
Aaaaand this is why IP law needs to be gotten rid of, or at least /severely/ limited and made so the only possible way to transfer it is from the original creator to the public domain. No more of this selling to corporations who then hoard it in perpetuity crap.

This has nothing to do with IP law. It has to do with bad management of licensing agreements. Ditto to most people in this thread. BBC the one that gave the blanket license to Dr. Who Magazine, you should be blaming them, this would change nothing, even with a law change.

Which are agreements for who can use the intellectual property (or IP) of Doctor Who to make comic books in the United Kingdom. It has everything to do with IP law.

I'd be angry if those rights were stuffed away as an unused asset... but the doctor who magazine publishes comic strips and properly did buy the license for this reason. I wonder if they were even approached. There were (false) rumors about buying the rights... ? Maybe somebody talked about it but it somehow reads like it was unclear if any of the relevant parties were involved in those talks.
The original article also states that online distribution is still possible so one can safe some trees and get it that way - without shipping costs.

 

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