On the night that MTV launched, the opening sequence for the network featured footage of the Apollo 11 launch, simply because it was public domain and free to use. It was that opening sequence that connected MTVs image with astronauts, including the Video Music Award β€œmoon man” trophy. mtv.com/news/2924701/vma-…
The Soviet Union was issued a top-level internet domain just before its 1991 collapse. The domain was never deactivated and has since become a haven for cybercriminals due to its lack of regulation. gizmodo.com/tons-of-hacke…
80% of books published 1924-63 never had their copyrights renewed and are now in the public domain boingboing.net/2019/08/01…
Before 1995, anyone who wanted a domain name could register it free of charge. This changed when the National Science Foundation awarded consulting company 'Network Solutions' the ability to charge for registration. mashable.com/2014/03/10/d…
Registering an online domain before 1995 was free mashable.com/2014/03/10/d…
The song "Happy Birthday to You" is actually in the public domain and has been since since 2017. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hap…
Unlike Santa's other reindeer, Rudolph is not in the public domain. The character was created for a U.S. department store in 1939. The original story remains under copyright, meaning the character can't be used without permission. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rud…
Even though the Soviet Union disbanded in 1991, the .su top-level domain remains in use today with over 100,000 .su domains as of July 2020. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.su
When Universal Studios purchased the rights to the original Dracula novel, it came to light that author Bram Stoker had not complied with a portion of US copyright law, placing the novel into the public domain. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dra…
Republic Pictures lost ownership of 'It's a Wonderful Life' to the public domain in 1974. However in 1993, they regained ownership of the film rights because they still had the movie rights to the original book, "The Greatest Gift", and thus the derivatives of said book. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/It%…
A single American organization called ICANN currently controls the entire internet domain system at the root. ICANN controls every single top-level domain like .com, .org, .net, .io, and they charge an $185,000 β€œevaluation fee” for new top-level domain applications. wikipedia.org/wiki/ICANN
A man named Michael Kovatch sold the domain name iPhone.com to Apple in 2007 for over $1 million USD. He had owned the domain name since 1995. techcrunch.com/2007/07/03…
Top-level domain names are owned and sold by countries/territories: .ly belongs to Libya, .io to the British Indian Ocean Territory, .ai to Anguilla, .tv to Tuvalu en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.ly
The domain name ".tv" is actually the country code domain for Tuvalu, a country in Polynesia. Due to its popularity from its similarity to 'television', the Tuvalu government sought to capitalize on it and nearly 10% of its revenue comes from royalties from .tv addresses. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.tv
Porn film Debbie Does Dallas is in the public domain due to a missing copyright notice, but the Dallas Cowboys hold veto power on commercial publication of it due to unauthorized use of their cheerleaders' trademarks en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lis…
Getty Images has repeatedly been caught selling the rights for photographs it doesn't own, including public domain images. In one incident they demanded money from a famous photographer for the use of one of her own pictures. latimes.com/business/hilt…
The Indianapolis Colts secretly relocated from Baltimore to Indianapolis because the Maryland General Assembly planned to seize ownership of the Colts using eminent domain en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bal…
Example.com isn't a 'real' domain - it's specifically set aside for the purpose of documentation examples iana.org/domains/reserved
Today I learned of Musopen, a non-profit org. that provides high-quality recordings of classical music in the public domain, so that anyone can use them. The project emerged as a response to the big corporations in the music industry that were burying old artists, like Beethoven and Chopin, behind copyright musopen.org/music/
Today I learned about Jon Postel, a researcher who in 1998 hijacked the internet to prove a point about it's poor security. Instead of being reprimanded he was appointed to run ICANN, the authority now responsible for overseeing domain naming and ensuring the internet's ongoing stability. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jon…
In 1974 the 1946 movie "It's A Wonderful Life" fell into public domain because the studio failed to renew it's copyright. As a result, it was aired a lot, which explains why it became so popular even though it flopped in theaters. The studio got rights to the movie again in 1993 blogs.loc.gov/copyright/2…
The Arthur Conan Doyle Estate was extorting $5K license fees to use the characters of Holmes and Watson, despite their origins being public domain. Author and attorney Leslie Klinger sued the Estate and won, with the courts ruling all pre-1923 aspects of Holmes to be public domain and fair use. bbc.com/news/entertainmen…
100 square miles of LA are surrounded by a religious physical wall called an "eruv" which symbolically extends the private domain of Jewish households into public areas, permitting activities within it that are normally forbidden in public on the Sabbath, such as carrying babies. lamag.com/citythinkblog/1…
Mickey Mouse enters the public domain and loses copyright protection on 1st January 2024. mentalfloss.com/article/5…
Drawing out a universal tree of life and finding a last common ancestor for all bacteria, archaea and eukaryotes have become even more colossal tasks in the last decades, due to the extensive amount of horizontal gene transfer that we now know can occur both within and between the three domains. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tre…
Anne Frank's diary entered the public domain the same day as Hitler's Mein Kampf. And that a copyright dispute still swirls around the diary. theverge.com/2016/1/1/106…
When the Baltimore Colts tried to move to Indianapolis, the owner feared that the government would attempt to keep the team in the city by eminent domain. He secretly packed up everything in trucks in the middle of the night and was in Indiana before the government realized they were gone. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bal…
Copyright on Mickey Mouse will expire on January 1, 2024. Batman, Superman and several Looney Tunes character will enter the public domain between 2031 and 2034. bookriot.com/2019/01/09/b…
The most expensive domain name ever sold was www.business.com sold for a whopping 345 million USD fortunly.com/blog/the-mos…
Due to a copyright issue, George Romero's film Night of the Living Dead is in the public domain, and can be downloaded for free on the internet. It is currently the most downladed film on the Internet Archive, with 3.1 million downloads. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nig…
The Walter Reade Organization mistakenly omitting the logo Β© when renaming George A. Romero's originally titled "Night of the Flesh Eaters" made Night of the Living Dead public domain. Thus, we'll never know how much the film made worldwide from all its unapproved showings, copies and sales. indiefilmhustle.com/night…
A reporter called Josh Quittner bought the domain name for mcdonalds.com and then wrote an article on domain squatting about it en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jos…
In 1999, defunct online retailer eToys once went in a legal battle with Swiss art group Etoy, who were attempting to take their web domain because of the similarity. This then led to the group turning it into an elegant campaign called "Toywar", which ridiculed eToys and was successful. etoy.com/projects/toywar/
β€œCalifornia here I come” is officially public domain. playback.fm/charts/top-10…
The 1963 movie Charade, starring Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn, entered the public domain immediately upon release due to Universal Pictures failing to actually include the word "Copyright" (or "Β©") in the copyright notice en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cha…
Mickey Mouse becomes public domain on January 1, 2024. arstechnica.com/tech-poli…
In the 1800s in a domain in the Philippines, feudal lords prevented peasants to celebrate festivals except for one every year. The peasants used this opportunity to mock the lords by making giant puppet versions of them. The festival is celebrated yearly since then. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hig…
"The Lion Sleeps Tonight" is a cover of a 1939 South African song called "Mbube," recorded in Zulu by Soloman Linda & the Evening Birds. The original is now public domain, but "The Lion Sleeps Tonight," with additional lyrics in English ("In the jungle, the mighty jungle...") is under copyright. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The…
A company once redirected all attempts to a non-registered domains to their own page, supposedly for profit. This also messed up with emails sent to non-existing domains for a while. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dom…
Before it was declared a public domain in 2016, Warner/Chappell has been collecting an estimated $2 million annually from people who use the "Happy Birthday" song, mainly in creative works like movies and television shows. arstechnica.com/tech-poli…
Before 1995, anyone who wanted a domain name could register it FREE OF CHARGE. That all changed when the National Science Foundation awarded tech consulting company Network Solutions the ability to charge for registration. Domain prices began at $100 for a two-year registration. mashable.com/2014/03/10/d…
The Soviet Union got an internet domain - .su - 15 months before its dissolution. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.su
The owner of nissan.com and nissan.net was in a 20 year legal battle against Nissan Motor for control over the domain names. After many years of lawsuits and appeals, Nissan never got control over neither domain nissan.com/Lawsuit/The_St…
Today I learned of Parakaryon myojinensis. A creature found only once near a hydrothermal vent south of japan, and is so unique that scientist can't agree if it's a prokaryote (bacteria, etc), an eukaryote (animals, plants, fungi, etc) or a new domain entirely. abc.net.au/science/articl…
Until the merger and assimilation with Confinity in 2000, PayPal's original domain name was x.com insider.com/elon-musk-off…
In 2004, Microsoft sued Mike Rowe for the domain MikeRoweSoft.com - They settled for an XBox and a selection of games en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mic…
.tv domains are actually the property of the small pacific island nation of Tuvalu, and their sale/use makes up a large portion of their governments revenue. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eco…
A man has named Uzi Nissan has held the rights to Nissan.com for over 20 years despite Nissan Motors attempts to acquire the domain nissan.com/
Like all major Disney characters, Mickey Mouse is not only copyrighted but also trademarked, which lasts in perpetuity as long as it continues to be used commercially by its owner. So, whether or not a particular Disney cartoon goes into the public domain, the characters may not be used. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mic…
In 1984, the Maryland legislator voted to use eminent domain in order to seize ownership of the NFL's Baltimore Colts. That night, Indiana sent 14 trucks to pack up everything in the Baltimore facility, and the trucks all took different routes out of Maryland in order to evade state police. usatoday.com/story/sports…

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