IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/nbr/nberwo/19521.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Copyright and the Profitability of Authorship: Evidence from Payments to Writers in the Romantic Period

Author

Listed:
  • Megan MacGarvie
  • Petra Moser

Abstract

Proponents of stronger copyright terms have argued that stronger copyright terms encourage creativity by increasing the profitability of authorship. Empirical evidence, however, is scarce, because data on the profitability of authorship is typically not available to the public. Moreover at current copyright lengths of 70 years after the author's death, further extensions may not have any effects on the profitability of authorship. To investigate effects of copyright at lower pre-existing levels of protection, this chapter introduces a new data set of publishers' payments to authors of British fiction between 1800 and 1830. These data indicate that payments to authors nearly doubled following an increase in the length of copyright in 1814. These findings suggest that - starting from low pre-existing levels of protection - policies that strengthen copyright terms may, in fact, increase the profitability of authorship.

Suggested Citation

  • Megan MacGarvie & Petra Moser, 2013. "Copyright and the Profitability of Authorship: Evidence from Payments to Writers in the Romantic Period," NBER Working Papers 19521, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:19521
    Note: PR DAE
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w19521.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Xing Li & Megan MacGarvie & Petra Moser, 2014. "Dead Poets’ Property - How Does Copyright Influence Price," Discussion Papers 14-001, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
    2. Julia Cage & Nicolas Hervé & Marie-Luce Viaud, 2017. "The Production of Information in an Online World: Is Copy Right?," Sciences Po publications DP12066, Sciences Po.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • K11 - Law and Economics - - Basic Areas of Law - - - Property Law
    • N83 - Economic History - - Micro-Business History - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • O34 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Intellectual Property and Intellectual Capital

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:19521. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/nberrus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.