Billionaire tech mogul Elon Musk is backing a campaign that seeks to end Disney’s exclusive rights to Mickey Mouse.
Disney could soon lose the exclusive rights the company holds for some of its most famous characters, including the iconic Mouse that serves as the company’s mascot.
Mickey Mouse will eventually enter the public domain in the year 2024, almost 95 years after his creation in October 1928.
The Walt Disney Company has a long history of getting favorable treatment from lawmakers when it comes to copyright law.
But Disney’s recent political attacks mean its support may be coming to an end.
In April, Florida’s Republican Governor Ron DeSantis stripped the company of its special self-governing privilages in the state.
The following month, Republican Senator Josh Hawley (R-MO) threatened to target Disney’s hold over its copyrights.
“The age of Republican handouts to big business is over,” Hawley said.
“Thanks to special copyright protections from Congress, woke corporations like Disney have earned billions while increasingly pandering to woke activists.
“It’s time to take away Disney’s special privileges and open up a new era of creativity and innovation.”
Daniel Mayeda, the associate director of the Documentary Film Legal Clinic at UCLA School of Law, said:
“Disney has been very active in trying to extend copyright terms.
“Successfully, they have had their term for Mickey and so forth extended, but I doubt that they’re going to be able to get additional extensions.
“I think this is going to be the end of the line.
“Copyrights are time-limited.
“Trademarks are not.
“So Disney could have a trademark essentially in perpetuity, as long as they keep using various things as they’re trademarked, whether they’re words, phrases, characters or whatever.”
— Newsmax (@newsmax) July 5, 2022
Elon Musk weighed in on the debate by saying that time has run out for Disney and they should lose the copyright.
Musk said simply:
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 5, 2022