Linux Today: Linux News On Internet Time.

LinuxPlanet: Napster on Linux: From a Whisper to a Scream

Mar 20, 2000, 19:55 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Kevin Reichard)

[ Thanks to Kevin Reichard for this link. ]

"If anyone needs more convincing that Internet time is a quantum leap past ordinary time, just check out the rapid growth of Napster among computer users of all stripes. Napster is an application that searches for MP3 files across the Internet and transfers songs or albums from one user to another, and there's almost half a million Napster users offering songs via the Internet. Both users need to be using Napster, but there's no intervening server that stores the MP3 files: all files are stored locally, and technically it's one user lending a personal copy of a song to another user, akin to making a mix tape or CD for a friend."

"Yes, it's probably illegal as hell: there's no way someone could interpret a personal license to any intellectual property and stretch it to the point where they're allowed to give away copies on the Internet to anyone for the asking. But the music industry, which has aggressively pursued legal action against Internet bootleg sites, now faces the daunting task of going after one user at a time...."

"In many cases, bootlegs were superior to the crud being put out by the major labels: John Lennon's wistful, original recording of Strawberry Fields Forever (which later resurfaced on The Beatles Anthology) was clearly superior to the official version, while live bootlegs from Elvis Costello and Bruce Springsteen showed a passion that was sometimes lacking in the more antiseptic studio releases. And let's face it: without bootlegs, the Grateful Deal and Phish would be playing the blues in some dumpy bar in South San Francisco. Indeed, with the band's official support of sharing performances, it could be argued that the real source of everything Open Source is the Grateful Dead."

Complete Story

Related Stories: