I know I'm beating a drum that no one's listening to, but I'm not the only one who thinks copyright protections are way too long. Short version:
Remember all the good old Disney movies? Yeah, all of them came from works no longer under copyright protection at the time. The whole of the Disney Empire and all the childhood magic that it produces only exist because there was copyright free work for Walt Disney – you know the guy who actually started the whole company – to rework and update. But the corporate, Waltless Disney was the big pusher of the 1998 life +70 years copyright extension. It made sure that no one could make more popular versions of their movies in the same way they made a more popular version of Alice in Wonderland.
Long (but entertaining) version:
P.S. Congress managed to get off their duffs to reform the archaic patent system, despite general gridlock about everything else, so maybe there's hope they'll get a clue about copyright as well.