"Napster has blazed the trail and built huge momentum; Freenet,
or something similar, will simply pick up this momentum if Napster
is shut down. The trend is inevitable. In the United States, our
laws and traditions will conflict with any attempt to prevent
people from sharing files that they own. Therefore, any attempt to
eliminate the basic practice of file sharing is doomed to failure.
That leaves only the rather impractical task of policing each and
every file transfer -- or trusting people with their decentralized
"Unauthorized software copying has become common now, and
the laws that apply to it are, for the most part, only enforced
against corporations. It is economically infeasible to address the
decentralized portion of the problem that personal computers make
possible. This situation foreshadows the future of the music
"Freedom of the press, freedom of speech, personal computers,
decentralized communications, human nature, the love of music, high
prices, and inconvenient packaging cannot coexist without
significant music copying. In order to control the copying problem,
at least one of the above constraints must be changed. People
aren't going to give up any of the first six; I suggest a new
strategy based on changing the current packaging and pricing model
to include convenient electronic distribution, sample-based
marketing, individual track selection, and new prices to reflect
the vastly reduced costs of running such a business."
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