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SF Gate: Universities balk at blocking Napster

[ Thanks to George
Mitchell
for this link. ]

“Los Angeles attorney Howard E. King, who is representing the
artists, two weeks ago asked 20 colleges to stop students from
Internet access to the program, which lets users share MP3 music
files. As of Friday’s deadline, none of those replying had agreed
to the block, King said.”

“Given the fact that Napster technology may be used for
legitimate purposes and that the university does not monitor the
use of its electronic systems, we see no justification for a
blanket block on access to Napster technology,” University of
California General Counsel James E. Holst said in a reply to King’s
request. UC officials compared blocking Napster to removing a
copying machine because it can be used to reproduce written works
illegally.”

“The response disappointed King. “I think it’s disingenuous to
profess to be great protectors of intellectual property yet at the
same time allow your facilities to be used for something that
everybody knows is thievery of intellectual property,” he said. In
Redwood City, Napster Inc. released a statement saying it was
“pleased with the universities decision to allow student to
continue to participate in the Napster community.”


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