Stanford University - Department of Economics
Landau Economics Building
579 Serra Mall
Stanford, CA 94305-6072
NBER Working Papers and Publications
|September 2015||Dead Poet's Property - How Does Copyright Influence Price?|
with Megan MacGarvie, Petra Moser: w21522
This article exploits a differential increase in copyright under the UK Copyright Act of 1814 - in favor of books by dead authors – to examine the influence of longer copyrights on price. Difference-in-differences analyses, which compare changes in the price of books by dead and living authors, indicate a substantial increase in price in response to an extension in copyright length. By comparison, placebo regressions for books by dead authors that did not benefit from the extension indicate no differential increase. Historical evidence suggests that longer copyrights increase price by improving publishers’ ability to practice intertemporal price discrimination.