These characters no longer truly belong to the writers who are writing their stories. They exist independent of their individual fictions. In our minds, many of their traits are already set in stone.
Fandom lets us ignore the shitty decisions made by ‘owners’ of our contemporary myths at the bottleneck of IP law.
Source: Captain America (Updated): On the heroic epic, the nature of story, the implied contract with the reader, the dumpster fire that is Marvel Comics’ choice to pursue this storyline, and why indefinite copyright is harmful to contemporary myth: a cranky Twitter rant.
The corporate behemoths that now own all of these characters have no idea how to plan for the long term. They keep wanting to bring stories of the past into the present, but what about stories of the present taken into the future?
No amount of copyright law will change the fact a character’s mythos are an organic thing that grows, changes, mutates, evolves, as time goes on and more people are made aware of it.