The author discusses copyright renewal in order to explore some lessons for designing copyright systems that are useful in thinking more generally about how to draft statutory provisions that implement many of the different kinds of revisions that might be considered as part of a Next Great Copyright Act. Some of these lessons are specific to copyright law. Others are not. Hopefully, identifying them will help us write a better copyright statute.


This is a slightly expanded version of the 28th Annual Horace S. Manges lecture delivered in February 2015 at Columbia Law School.