Essay by EssaySwap ContributorUniversity, Bachelor's February 2008

download word file, 3 pages 3.0

Napster! It is a name we are all familiar with by now. It is the revolutionary way to trade song files on the net based on a peer-peer network. Napster has about 32 million users, which download approximately 1.4 billion songs a month. I am proud to say that I am one of those 32 million people and would be devastated if it were to disappear. Well this could very well happen. Napster is trying to be shut down by the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) for copyright infringement. The RIAA is bringing up a case against Napster that convicts them of four main infringements. If Napster is found innocent on any one of these four convictioins then the case is over and Napster is allowed to stay up and running. The first conviction is, are Napster users guilty of copyright infringement? The answer to this may be yes but in no way is Napster responsible for it’s users commiting illegal acts.

So that brings up the second issue. Can Napster be help responsible for some users committing copyright infringement? No they cannot. There are many uses for the program that are considered non-infringing. One of these uses is called space shifting. This is what I personally as well as most people who use Napster do. Space shifting is downloading music from one source and storing it on your hard drive or converting it to a more portable means of transportation. Another non- infringing use is sampling music. Even if material is copyrighted it has never been against the law to sample music without the copyright holders consent. Even if it were illegal as of now there are over 25,000 artists that have given permission for their music to be circulated and shared on Napster. A similar case took...