"Unfortunately for RIAA shutting down Napster is not going to
change demand for the ability to digitally download music. Where
before that demand was focused on Napster due to the ease of
finding the right music selection (Napster had the greatest number
of users, thus the greatest selection of downloads which in turn
reinforced their lead in users. Ain't network effects great?)
Demand will now be forced into other outlets. Since the RIAA and
the music industry as a whole has not agreed on a standard for
secure download, nor have they made any replacement service for
Napster available, this demand will undoubtedly flow into GNUtella,
which is a close cousin to Napster with some key differences. This
creates some serious problems for the RIAA."
"Without a centralized server to facilitate search, Gnutella
truly is one to one sharing of file. It's harder to find what you
want but nonetheless, it still can be found. It really is sharing a
copy with a friend. Never mind that it is a perfect digital copy of
the original or so close that the listener cannot tell the
difference. This sort of sharing falls under the traditional
definition of "fair use" and I would hazard a guess that any court
cases the RIAA brings to challenge that will fail."
"With music sharing now distributed with a true peer to peer
client (which will undoubtedly improve over time as an open source
product) the RIAA has lost the ability to influence the way music
is delivered on the Internet. Since there is no central
company in charge of GNUtella, lawsuits will be difficult, if not
next to impossible to serve."
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