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Disney ‘Cracks Down’ on Mickey Mouse ‘Steamboat Silly’ Pirates * TorrentFreak

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Mickey Mouse’s first cartoon appearance entered the public domain this month. This means that the famous “Steamboat Willie” cartoon is now free to copy, remix and monetize. More recent Mickey appearances remain protected, including the “Steamboat Silly” short which, confusingly, uses Steamboat Willie footage.

williewillieFor several decades, Disney has managed to keep the earliest footage of its iconic mouse protected.

Notably, the 1998 U.S. Copyright Term Extension Act, also dubbed the Mickey Mouse Protection Act, extended copyright protection to 95 years.

When Walt Disney released “Steamboat Willie” in 1928, he couldn’t have envisioned how important this short film would become, or that its entrance into the U.S. public domain would spark headlines worldwide. Nevertheless, that’s exactly what happened.

Free Mickey

On January 1, many people celebrated the public domain event by uploading “Steamboat Willie” to YouTube and elsewhere. This,…

You can read the full Torrent Freak article here

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