You do realize that copyrights nowadays expire a set number of decades after the death of the original author, if it is a physical person?
Quite the contrary, I believe it would be better if the duration of copyright was greatly reduced, even to a set number of years regardless of whether the authors have died or not.
Long-term copyright in some cases simply allows for an interesting form of parasitism. TV (at least where I leave) is already filled with “artists” who have produced, like, one (1) popular song in their lifetime and now simply infest talk shows and reality shows, and when requested a performance, sing always the same one (1) song - we don’t need any more of that. If copyright lasted no more than x years (where x could even be adjusted to the kind of work), perhaps such artists would have an incentive to keep at it and produce more. (not that it would necessarily be good for quality, but since I don’t see good quality even with the current system anyway… g)
When authors eventually die, people who had nothing to do with the copyrighted work, and as such didn’t necessarily contribute to either progress or culture, end up gaining profits without hardly doing any work, if at all. These can be artists’ heirs or, in too many cases, the record industry itself when labels manage to just buy off “property” of copyrighted work (think the notorious “happy birthday to you” example). Also, I would not forget that copyright can in some cases be exploited as a form of censorship.
Unexpiring copyright would take consequences of this kind to the extreme. To me, that heirs be allowed to profit without doing any work, already sounds like a new form of middle ages “nobility” now; I don’t really want to think about what could happen if it was allowed to last for several generations.
As for the topic, the WTO is yet another example of a world-wide body of decision-makers, unelected by the people, that pushes supposedly sovereign national governments to adopt policies according to their own interests, rather than that of the country or its people. Shouldn’t this kind of thing be enough to disturb anyone?