17 U.S.C. § 303 - U.S. Code - Unannotated Title 17. Copyrights § 303. Duration of copyright:  Works created but not published or copyrighted before January 1, 1978

(a)  Copyright in a work created before January 1, 1978, but not theretofore in the public domain or copyrighted, subsists from January 1, 1978, and endures for the term provided by section 302 .  In no case, however, shall the term of copyright in such a work expire before December 31, 2002;  and, if the work is published on or before December 31, 2002, the term of copyright shall not expire before December 31, 2047.

(b)  The distribution before January 1, 1978, of a phonorecord shall not for any purpose constitute a publication of any musical work, dramatic work, or literary work embodied therein.

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