This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Who Is Napster Actually Hurting? Essay

1997 words - 8 pages

1. Background
The Napster software (http://www.napster.com), launched early in 1999, allows internet users to share and download MP3 files directly from any computer connected to the Napster network. The software is used by downloading a client program from the Napster site and then connecting to the network through this software, which allows sharing (uploading and downloading) of MP3 files between all users connected to the network. While Napster does not condone copyright infringement, there is no opportunity in the software to stop this, or for royalties to be paid to artists whose songs are being duplicated for free.

Unlike similar file-sharing applications (Gnutella, Freenet), Napster limits users to uploading/downloading of MP3 files only. These files are compressed wave (.wav) files. The advantage of MP3 files is that they are approximately one-tenth the size of the corresponding .wav file and can be close-to-CD-quality. It is for this reason that many artists, record labels and other music industry stakeholders are concerned by the MP3 file format and applications like Napster that simplify the sharing of copyrighted material.

Other file formats in common use on the Internet are not as threatening to the recording industry; primarily due to the reduced quality of the recording. Real audio (.ra, .rm) files have reduced sound quality (comparable to radio) and are usually streamed over a different protocol, allowing people to listen to songs without having (or being able) to download the source files. Another 'music' file format common on the internet is the midi format. These files are of no threat to the music industry because the files are not actually a recording of the music; rather a set of instructions to the computer as to what sounds to play (and there is no way to duplicate vocal tracks). This file format is also becoming outdated and being used less and less.

2. Impact
The reaction from recording artists, record labels and other music industry players has been varied, but primarily anti-Napster. The first action to be taken against Napster was by the band Metallica. In April of this year, they sued Napster Inc for copyright infringement. The case was settled out of court when Napster agreed to ban some 300,000 users who had allegedly downloaded Metallica songs. Again in June Napster Inc was sued for copyright infringement by The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), a trade group representing the US recording industry, alleging "Napster is... enabling and encouraging the illegal copying and distribution of copyrighted music". Napster claims that Audio Home Recording Act that permits copying of material for personal use, allows it's uses to swap MP3s. Napster further claims immunity by defining the company as an ISP under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. The RIAA unsuccessfully applied to have an injunction to stop Napster's operations until after the court case in September, so Napster will continue to operate...

Find Another Essay On Who is Napster actually Hurting?

Napster- What is it? Essay

881 words - 4 pages , all new bands singles are featured on the program but not forgetting many, many old songs for the older users of the site. So you ask, "What could be the problem with such a useful and friendly site? And my answer is GREEDY record companies who want every penny than can get out of people like you and me. Under the pretence that the money is going to the cost of making the CD's and paying the artists royalties, Actually only a tiny fraction of

Is File-Sharing via Internet Illegal? Essay

1649 words - 7 pages the applicable law involved.  After looking at Napster's defense, we will attempt an answer at the ultimate question, as well as for what damages Napster might be liable, and possible remedies that would hopefully satisfy all of the parties involved in this murky, and potentially landmark, case.               By far and away, the largest problem in dealing with a case like Napster is determining all of who is involved, and what actions

Napster Problem or Solution

2364 words - 9 pages Napster users who are committing copyright infringement, they have decided to sue Napster itself instead. This would effectively eliminate the source of the problem as most MP3 exchange today is done through Napster. The problem is that Napster is never actually committing copyright infringement, as Napster is never actually in possession of illegal MP3 files. They are never stored in, nor do they travel through Napster's server. The server

Napster:Explained. In this report i explain exactly what napster is and how it has changed the file sharing industry

3454 words - 14 pages . Napster looked to be on the fast track for success. To fully understand the record companies and artists perspective, it is essential to know a little bit about how Napster operates. The Napster software is free, and available to anyone in the world who is connected to the internet. At any point in time, there are millions of people who are logged onto the service. Napster users log their computer into the Napster servers. As they are logging into

Napster And MP3's

1129 words - 5 pages infringement, which means Napster is being accused not of violating copyright itself but of contributing to and facilitating other people's infringement. The issue may come down to what Napster lead attorney David Boies, who successfully prosecuted the Department of Justice's case against Microsoft, describes as "the definition of commercial or noncommercial uses" (Tully 186). It is perfectly legal for users to copy music for their own enjoyment

Napster Case Study

1777 words - 7 pages would be fulfilled. Napster: Catalyst for a new industry or Just another Dot.com? The Napster website has been able to attract large number of internet users who are allowed unlimited downloading of their favorite music albums in the forms of MP3 files. Earlier the music enthusiasts had to depend on the CDs marketed by the larger music companies. The artists also had to depend on the support given by the big five music companies for the

Copyright Laws and regulations issues

1986 words - 8 pages intellectual property and spread it around to whoever is online. The hard thing is to track down who these people are. More government regulations are needed on the Internet to protect intellectual property. Without more laws and regulations, there will be more Napster imitators in the future. The Internet is a relatively new thing and very unpredictable at this point. New things are being discovered everyday, both for good and not-so-good reasons. Of

MP3 Controversy

1592 words - 6 pages again because of rumors saying that Napster is going to start charging a fee for its service.Even with the shut down of Napster, MP3 technology still isn't dead. Actually, it's very much alive and kickin'. Soon after the Napster shut down, there were many programs which are Napster clones that started to appear onto the Internet. These programs are actually much more sophisticated than Napster. Most of these programs can download pieces of an

The Napster Lawsuit in the U.S

1267 words - 5 pages the conception of Napster and was actually filed four months after Napster went on line. The case is not as clear-cut as it first appears. RIAA argues that most of the MP3's on Napster's site are mainly pirated. Therefore, by Napster allowing and actually making it easier for users to download MP3's this means that they are assisting Copyright infringement. Napsters defence is according to some legal experts, quite strong, especially as there

Downloading songs from the Internet: is it robbery or free expression? A specific look at Napster Inc

822 words - 3 pages have been primarily anti-Napster. The first action to be taken against Napster was sued by the band Metallica. In April of 2000, Metallica sued Napster Inc. for copyright infringement. Napster banned some 300,000 users who allegedly downloaded Metallica songs to settle the case out of court. Napster Inc. was sued again in June 2000, for copyright infringement by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), a trade group representing the US

The Napster Debate

653 words - 3 pages the hassle of going through a central computer to do so. To put it simply, Fanning figured all he had to do was combine a Windows file sharing program, instant messaging system, and different capabilities of various search engines in order to simplify the way people get music over the Internet. Napster contends that the company is not actually giving away the music, but just providing a means of getting that music. They just provide a

Similar Essays

Napster, From Freeware To Business Model

2725 words - 11 pages is abetting the free exchange of copyrighted songs over the internet. Is Napster hurting the music industry? Does Napster affect CD sales? should Napster be shutdown for good? These are the types of questions put forth before three federal judges in California who will ultimately determine Napster's fate.         I believe that Napster has nothing to gain and everything to lose if they continue to support piracy. Its clear to me that

Napster Essay

534 words - 2 pages downloads last year but music sales have been up, so how is Napster hurting the music industry?" Therefore Napster is not illegal, but some people use it in ways that are. So what is the solution? Should we stop selling blank cd's?         Without a doubt Napster is a good way to promote music. Think of how it helps bands who aren't played on the radio. Napster is just another source of music as is the radio, audio, and video cassette

The Legal Issue With Napster And The Music Industry

1488 words - 6 pages . Courtney Love supports Napster in the legality of trading music saying, "Stealing our copyright provisions in the dead of night when no-one is looking is piracy. It's not piracy when kids swap music over the Internet using Napster. There were one billion downloads last year, but music sales are way up, so how is Napster hurting the music industry? It's not. The only people who are scared of Napster are the people who have filler on their

Untitled Essay

765 words - 3 pages the question, are programs like Napster illegal or does the program actually have some validity.There are several people against the use of programs like Napster. The band Metallica filed the first federal suit against Napster. The band is suing the company for copyright infringement and racketeering. Lars Ulrich, the band drummer says; "Napster hijacked our music without asking. They never sought out permission. Out catalog of music simply