Unpublished version of a published article

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  • Hi all, 

    I have an unpublished draft of an article that was written in 1911 or 1912. One of the authors lived past 1950. The article was published a few months after this draft and the published version is not in copyright. The unpublished draft is pretty similar to the published version, but not identical. Is the unpublished draft therefore still in copyright even though the later version which was published isn't? 


    Thank you,


  • Life of the author plus 70 years applies to the unpublished work if the unpublished work was never registered.  If the author died before 1949, the work is in the public domain.

    If the unpublished work was registered, then the term from the 1909 copyright would apply. 28 years plus one renewal of 28 years. 1911+ 28 (no renewal) PD in 1939. 1911 + 28 + 28 with renewal PD in 1967. 

    Hope this helps. https://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ15a.pdf


  • Thank you!

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