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Napster

MandolinPaul 28 Jul 00 - 10:02 AM
reggie miles 28 Jul 00 - 10:08 AM
SDShad 28 Jul 00 - 10:17 AM
MandolinPaul 28 Jul 00 - 10:38 AM
Morticia 28 Jul 00 - 10:53 AM
SDShad 28 Jul 00 - 11:04 AM
SDShad 28 Jul 00 - 11:06 AM
SDShad 28 Jul 00 - 11:08 AM
GUEST,Roger the skiffler 28 Jul 00 - 11:41 AM
DougR 28 Jul 00 - 11:54 AM
GUEST,John D. 28 Jul 00 - 01:08 PM
Homeless 28 Jul 00 - 01:20 PM
SeanM 28 Jul 00 - 01:24 PM
Alice 28 Jul 00 - 01:39 PM
MandolinPaul 28 Jul 00 - 01:46 PM
Sean Belt 28 Jul 00 - 01:59 PM
DougR 28 Jul 00 - 01:59 PM
Homeless 28 Jul 00 - 02:01 PM
SeanM 28 Jul 00 - 02:25 PM
Sean Belt 28 Jul 00 - 02:56 PM
SeanM 28 Jul 00 - 03:11 PM
Homeless 28 Jul 00 - 03:26 PM
GUEST,Russ 28 Jul 00 - 03:28 PM
MandolinPaul 28 Jul 00 - 03:30 PM
Les B 28 Jul 00 - 03:59 PM
GUEST,Mark C 28 Jul 00 - 04:11 PM
MandolinPaul 28 Jul 00 - 04:17 PM
MandolinPaul 28 Jul 00 - 04:18 PM
MandolinPaul 28 Jul 00 - 04:20 PM
GUEST,Mark C 28 Jul 00 - 04:29 PM
MandolinPaul 28 Jul 00 - 04:36 PM
Bill D 28 Jul 00 - 05:53 PM
SeanM 28 Jul 00 - 06:17 PM
Charlie Baum 28 Jul 00 - 06:35 PM
Alice 28 Jul 00 - 07:25 PM
Alice 28 Jul 00 - 07:34 PM
Homeless 28 Jul 00 - 08:13 PM
Alice 28 Jul 00 - 08:45 PM
Alice 28 Jul 00 - 08:47 PM
Homeless 28 Jul 00 - 11:55 PM
SeanM 29 Jul 00 - 12:53 AM
SeanM 29 Jul 00 - 12:58 AM
Gypsy 29 Jul 00 - 01:07 AM
SeanM 29 Jul 00 - 01:23 AM
SeanM 29 Jul 00 - 01:25 AM
Gypsy 29 Jul 00 - 01:26 AM
Lepus Rex 29 Jul 00 - 03:42 AM
Lepus Rex 29 Jul 00 - 03:44 AM
Nicole Leonard 29 Jul 00 - 04:26 AM
Morticia 29 Jul 00 - 07:14 AM
GUEST,Barry Finn 29 Jul 00 - 08:52 AM
GUEST,Mark C 29 Jul 00 - 10:37 AM
SeanM 29 Jul 00 - 12:26 PM
GUEST,James Stanley 29 Jul 00 - 02:11 PM
GUEST,Ely 30 Jul 00 - 12:50 AM
Charlie Baum 30 Jul 00 - 02:10 AM
GUEST,Banjo Johnny 30 Jul 00 - 10:39 PM
GUEST,Ely 31 Jul 00 - 12:46 AM
Charlie Baum 31 Jul 00 - 09:24 AM
*Conrad Bladey Peasant-Inactive 31 Jul 00 - 11:23 AM
GUEST,Ely 31 Jul 00 - 08:45 PM
*Conrad Bladey Peasant-Inactive 31 Jul 00 - 08:53 PM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 01 Aug 00 - 12:12 PM
annamill 01 Aug 00 - 01:20 PM
Ed Pellow 01 Aug 00 - 03:25 PM
GUEST, Banjo Johnny 01 Aug 00 - 04:19 PM
SeanM 01 Aug 00 - 04:57 PM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 01 Aug 00 - 06:20 PM
Charlie Baum 01 Aug 00 - 06:21 PM
SeanM 01 Aug 00 - 06:55 PM
GUEST, Banjo Johnny 01 Aug 00 - 07:23 PM
GUEST,Okiemockbird 02 Aug 00 - 12:14 PM
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Subject: Napster
From: MandolinPaul
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 10:02 AM

I'm surprised there isn't a thread about this already. Here's a statement from Napster's homepage:
How You Can Support Napster

Thanks for being a member of the Napster community and for the support you have shown. As you have probably heard, the RIAA won a court battle this week that may keep you from using Napster to share music files as of Friday at midnight Pacific time. Please keep using Napster between now and then. We'll know more about the potential shutdown shortly, and we'll keep you informed.

We're getting a lot of questions about what people can do to help. Here are three things you can do right away.

1. Write the heads of the major record companies and tell them you are their best customers - loyal and active music fans -- and that you don't want them to kill Napster. Here's a link to their emails.

2. Show the companies your power. We're calling for a two-day "buy-cott" this weekend. Support the artists who support Napster by going out and buying their CDs. Click here for a list. Be sure to let the record store know you came from Napster.

3. Keep coming back. We'll keep you informed as time goes on….

My main question is: What does midnight in pacific time convert to in Mudcat time?

Paul


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: reggie miles
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 10:08 AM

Paul, I think that's 8pm Mudcat time.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: SDShad
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 10:17 AM

More like 3 am Saturday, Mudcat Time.

And who needs Napster when there's Scour, IMesh, Gnutella, and best of all, IRC? Short-sighted decision on the part of the judge; this technology ain't going away. Not that I'll miss the bandwidth-hogging of college students who know absolutely nothing about how to use a computer except use Napster and download porn....

Chris


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: MandolinPaul
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 10:38 AM

Thanks Shad.

Most of the answers I've been able to find elsewhere have agreed. I've never tried any of those other things; do you have links? Can you tell me more about them?

Paul.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Morticia
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 10:53 AM

I just posted on another thread re Napster....and I didn't know about any others either,SD, tell us more?


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: SDShad
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 11:04 AM

Well, I've probably download mIRC, the best IRC client, from Tucows at www.tucows.com, which also carries all kinds of Windows freeware and shareware.

As for IMesh, Scour, and Gnutella, I don't really know, but Yahoo gives links for 'em at:

IMesh: www.imesh.com, none to surprisingly
Scour: www.scour.com, download Scour Exchange Beta
Gnutella: gnutella.wego.com, to go "Download"

Chris


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: SDShad
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 11:06 AM

Mind you, I should've mentioned that IRC stands for "Internet Relay Chat." What it is is a chat program, unlike the other three, which are vaguely Napster-like, but there are channels where you can get MP3s. Many channels. Just look for channels with "mp3" in the name, basically.

Chris


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: SDShad
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 11:08 AM

Oh, and there's an official page for mIRC at www.mirc.com.

C.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: GUEST,Roger the skiffler
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 11:41 AM

At lunch over a glass of wine to celebrate the switch off of our old computer system (hope the new one works on Monday!)someone was talking about using WAP phones to connect to the internet. I said if they conected to Napster they'd only get MP3 files of Doo-Wap music.
Well it seemed funny at the time, OK, well, you hadda be there...Oh OK I'll go now.
RtS


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: DougR
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 11:54 AM

I really haven't followed the Napster controversy very closely. I wonder, however, how Mudcatters feel about Napster and other sites like it. Is it good for the music industry, for the recording artists, or bad?

DougR


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: GUEST,John D.
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 01:08 PM

Farrrrrr Out!


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Homeless
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 01:20 PM

DougR - I got on Napster once to find a song that I've been looking for for years and could never locate on any media. (I did find it.) Then I started poking around and finding other things of interest - I did a Napster search on "Long Black Veil" and found 12 different versions by different artists. Similar results with "John Barleycorn." What was nice about it was that it gave me exposure to artists that I'd never heard of but quite enjoyed once I listened to a track or two of their music. I've since ordered CDs from those artists.

I think that it's capabilities for helping find songs that have been out of print for years are nice. Ditto with it's ability to give smaller artists more exposure. But I think that it can be (and for the most part is) abused. Any song that you can currently hear on the radio, IMO, doesn't belong on Napster.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: SeanM
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 01:24 PM

There have been several threads on the overall topic... a few specifically about Napster.

I'm of the opinion that Nap could have been good for the industry. Unfortunately, the industy still hasn't apparently figured out that you can't get the genie back into the bottle merely by jumping up and down on it and calling it names...

In the meantime, there's going to be a division between the business, a few fans, and some artists who claim that any of this technology is bankrupting them and stealing their reason to create, and other artists along with a few businesses and slightly more fans claiming that Napster and it's ilk is at best an uncontrolled distribution channel that encourages more people to buy their recordings and disseminates them to markets otherwise untouched by the Industry promotion machine (my opinion as well), or at worst is a trifling problem compared to the sheer greed, money grabbing and graft going on within the industry itself.

Whatever happens, if history has proven one thing, it's that once a technology has been disseminated to the general public (and if the estimates of 20 MILLION napster users is correct, that's a good amount of users, let alone the ranks of those informed of the service), you can't just get rid of it by saying "don't do that".

M


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Alice
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 01:39 PM

Stealing is stealing. I don't know why people can't understand that and go so far as to condone it. Hopefully this alternative will help: Napster founder gets copyright-friendly with new firm click here


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: MandolinPaul
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 01:46 PM

I think that the record companies went after Napster because it was an easy target. But strictly speaking, I'm not convinced that Napster was breaking the law.

Back in the seventies and early eighties, a lot of records had a little logo in the bottom right corner, of a skull and crossbones, with the slogan "Home-taping is killing music and it's illegal". Now, maybe I'm not old enough to remember, but the whole lawsuit against Napster seems equivalent to having the record companies sue BASF, and other companies that make blank tapes, for providing the means by which we, the lawbreakers, tape albums. I don't think there was ever any such lawsuit.

Napster was just providing the means by which people could exchange music. A lot of the users were breaking the law by exchanging copyrighted material. It is just easier, however to sue Napster than to come after each of us (oops, I mean "those criminals") who misuse Napster.

Now admittedly, it would be naive to think that the purpose of Napster, and blank tapes for that matter, is strictly intended to be the legal exchange of music. But to take it to an extreme, when somebody gets shot in a bank holdup, nobody sues Smith&Wesson.

Paul.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Sean Belt
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 01:59 PM

I'm with you on this, Alice. The musicians that I know who have CDs in release are generally living pretty close to the bone. They count on selling those CDs at gigs or through local shops and internet sites like Amazon, County Sales, etc. for a big chunk of their income. My understanding is that with Napster and the like, I could post the entirety of, say, The Boney Goat Band's latest CD without their approval and then anyone who wanted to could download it for free. The artist then receives no money for their music.

This seems very wrong to me. I believe strongly that unauthorized duplication vioaltes the law and does hurt independent artists and labels.

But then, this gets all tied up with another pet peeve of mine: Folk artist's work is not held in even the same regard as that of plumbers. We're often asked to play our music for free at schools, fund raisers, etc. Then when we point out that we make our living this way and can't really afford to do all the freebies that come our way, people are offended. However, they'd never think of asking a plumber, accountant, electrician to work for nothing.

But that's another rant for another thread, eh?

- Sean


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: DougR
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 01:59 PM

Thanks for the comments. I hope there are some more.

DougR


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Homeless
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 02:01 PM

Alice - granted stealing is stealing. But when I go to buy a car I make damn sure I test drive it before I spend a penny on it. When I want to buy new clothes I try them on beforehand too. And if I do buy something at a store and find out that it doesn't fit/match/work, or that I don't like it, I can take it back to the store for a refund. But if I buy a CD, at $15 a shot, and don't like it after all, I'm screwed. Can't exchange it, can't get a refund. The only choice I have is take it to a used CD store and get maybe one dollar for it.

And if someone wants to let me know where I can get a CD that contains the Leo Sayer song "Long Tall Glasses" I will gladly purchase a copy. For over ten years I have been unable to find this song on any media. So who am I stealing it from? There is no official channel that I can find where it is available. So if they won't put it in a position to be making money off of it, how can I be stealing it?


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: SeanM
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 02:25 PM

Homeless, I'm with you on that one.

I admit! I'm guilty!

I've downloaded material that's probably copyright protected!

However: Because of that material, I've searched out and bought CDs from several bands that I'd never heard of.

~or~

I've downloaded copyright protected material that I already own in other formats, that I wanted to be able to listen to while I work.

~or~

I've downloaded copyright protected material that while it's still protected, is only available from rarities vendors, used stores, or through informal exchange networks (read: pirates) of out of print releases.

I'm not going to put on the rose-tinted glasses and say that every Napster user did the same as I. Pirates are pirates, and hackers are hackers. All the sabre rattling in the world will NOT stop them (or even slow them down). 

I'd hope that RIAA and the rest of the corp machinations realize the futility of that front. As to the other 19 million users who don't consider themselves pirates or hackers, one would hope that the 'industry' will realize that this is a 'market', and ignoring it will just cause MORE napsters, gnutellas, Mapsters, and god knows how many other clones to pop up and exploit it.

*Sigh*... probably do more on this later, after I'm off work and can organize my thoughts.

M


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Sean Belt
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 02:56 PM

Homeless,

The fact that a song may be out of print but available as a free download doesn't make it any less stealing to make use of that download. You ask from whom are you stealing? For starters, the artist who wrote and recorded the song. He/She gets no royalties from your download. It's not the artist's fault that the song is out of print. Should she/he be further financially penalized because Capitol Records (for instance) decides to delete his/her catalogue? Your argument sounds like a rationalization for why its okay for you to rip off fellow artists. Think about it for a while and I'm sure you'll see the ramifications of your actions.

If a singer or musician chooses to put their music on the web for free, that's one thing. But the type of downloading you're refering to is stealing, plain and simple, until you decide to start personally sending royalty checks to those whose art you're pirating.

- Sean


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: SeanM
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 03:11 PM

How does an artist who's catalog is out of print benefit from second-hand sales, then? He/She will not be getting any royalties from their album if I buy it from a collector. He/She will not be getting any royalties, period, no matter what I or any other consumer does unless we track them down personally and send them money. I don't see downloads of discontinued tunes a "penalty", in that case. If anything, they might act as a spur for a record company to re-release the recordings in question.

The problem lies that with discontinued recordings, you have no choice. No matter what you realistically do, the artist will never see a penny of your purchase. So you are now restricted to either never getting the recording, or 'stealing' it. Until recently, this was the same problem with smaller label recordings and regional releases, but this has now been partially alleviated with internet e-commerce.

Is there an option? Sure! If the record companies and other megalo-control organizations made it possible to download out of print files at reasonable rates, I'd happily do it that way. Until then, your only options are to 'steal', or never have access to the recording. As someone who's band is currently going through the process of putting a CD together, if I had to make a choice between the two, I'd rather take the former.

M


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Homeless
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 03:26 PM

Sean,
The artist also isn't making any money if the song isn't commercially available. So they aren't getting "further financially penalized." It's not as tho I'm getting something for free that I would otherwise have to pay for. The artist won't realize the missing income if he isn't getting it anyway.

Like I said in my earlier post - show me where I can buy it and I will. The point is that there is no where else to find it. Regarding it not being an artist's fault that the label deletes their catalog - I would MUCH rather pay a performer directly than pay a record store, label, etc.

If there is a way to find out what the royalties for that song are, and an address I can use to get them to Leo, please point me in that direction and I will gladly send him his due. Ditto for the band Gryphon.

In the meantime, I've order CDs from Heather Alexander and Wild Asparagus, and bought some Lefty Frizzell, Traffic, Dave Matthews, Tom Waits, and Michelle Shocked - none (save Traffic) of whom I'd ever heard of until stumbling across them in Napster.

Out of curiosity, if I buy something from a used CD store, does the artist make any money from that sale? If not, is re-selling the CD considered stealing?

Just for the record - I work as a computer programmer and have written quite a bit of shareware. You know, the 'try it for 30 days and then pay for it' kind of software. So I'm fully aware of both ends of the "not being paid for services due" issue.

Sean, it seems like our disagreement is getting a little strong and a bit off-topic (the main point has moved from Napster to a moral/ethical question). I would suggest that rather than cluttering the thread any more, we move to PMs. Do you agree?


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: GUEST,Russ
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 03:28 PM

I believe in supporting and encouraging the music I like. If I like an artist or band, I am quite happy to buy their tapes, CDs, T-shirts, bumper stickers, keychains, flyswatters, fans, whatever. Whenever possible I do so at a concert so that they get all the money. For me it is not so much an ethical issue as a practical one. If I don't vote with my wallet, the people I like will quit producing.

Of course, when I talk about the musicians I love, I'm not talking BIG NAMES. The musicians I love are ones who are doing it for love or obsession and not money. In the recording industry they are the most minor of minor leaguers. Britney Spears, Inc. will never miss the $15 I did NOT spend on her latest CD, but Sheila Kay Adams will think it's a hoot when I ask her to autograph the CD I will buy from her at Augusta.

In addition, support of my favorite musicians is often a personal issue. The people whose recordings I buy are often people I've partied and jammed with, taken classes from, bought drinks for, and put up for the night. How could I cheat them?

The quick, easy, and cheap exchange of information (including song files) is a done deal. It will only get quicker, easier, and cheaper. What we or the recording industry think of napster or the son of napster is irrelevant. For the recording industry there is only one important question at this time: How do we stay in existence? Their window of opportunity is small and they might miss it, but you never can tell. Maybe they've learned something from the dinosaurs.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: MandolinPaul
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 03:30 PM

I'm not going to defend myself: I've used Napster, and thought the whole time, "Cool! Free music! Now I won't need to buy so many CD's".

As a parallel, when I found the Mudcat, I thought, "Cool! Free lyrics! Now I won't need to buy so many songbooks".

Food for thought.

Paul.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Les B
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 03:59 PM

Homeless - your comment about not letting Napster distribute anything that's currently on the radio is interesting.

I was just doing some research on the early days of Western Swing and ran across the idea that when the recording industry started up in the 1920's they didn't want their records played on radio at all - they were afraid no one would buy them !! This led to the use of live groups on the radio - like Bob Wills' early band, the Light Crust Doughboys - named for the sponsoring flour company. Boy, hasn't this changed !!

Later on, in the 40;s & 50's, radio stations were afraid the introduction of television would put them out of business. Also, the motion picture industry invented Cinema-scope and other wide screen formats to compete with the new threat of TV. They're all still around !

While it still remains to be seen what will happen with Napster, history would seem to tell us that one media rarely drives another out of business. Look at all the dot.com ads for the Internet now appearing on television. We're living in interesting times.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: GUEST,Mark C
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 04:11 PM

Paul - food for thought...

Maybe when you produce something of value to you, then somebody takes it without asking, without paying... maybe you won't hink "Cool! Free whatever!" anymore.

I don't know what the answer is. All I know is that the ability to rationalize the action of stealing (and it IS stealing) a product by demonizing the record-industry, or by bemoaning that it's out-of-circulation, or that the richer artists won't miss it, or that you can't prevent the technology... that ability doesn't make it less than stealing. When you enjoy the benefit of having a 'product' without giving up what is due to have it, you're stealing.

I applaud you folk who turn around and buy CD's that you've tried before hand. But you're naive if you think you're the rule.

Maybe the industry bigwigs can't stop it... then what? Again, you're naive if you think they won't get their money. They still have to pay the top dollar for the big names. They'll maintain their profit margin by charging more for the products that they CAN guarantee a return on - including live performances.

Humbly, Mark C


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: MandolinPaul
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 04:17 PM

Hey Mark.

You're right, of course. Like I said, I'm not defending myself. I stole music using Napster. There is no rationalization; I stole it.

I just thought I'd try to put it in perspective. Another example: Ever had a friend tape an album for you; when you decided you liked it, did you immediately go out and buy the album, every time?

It's the same thing.

Paul.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: MandolinPaul
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 04:18 PM

Hey Mark.

You're right, of course. Like I said, I'm not defending myself. I stole music using Napster. There is no rationalization; I stole it.

I just thought I'd try to put it in perspective. Another example: Ever had a friend tape an album for you; when you decided you liked it, did you immediately go out and buy the album, every time?

It's the same thing.

By the way, I have a very strict policy against producing anything of value.

Paul.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: MandolinPaul
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 04:20 PM

Oops. Double post. I hate that.

Paul.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: GUEST,Mark C
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 04:29 PM

I know.

In the 'old days', it seemed more benign. Actually, it didn't 'seem' anything, because it didn't seem like an issue.

So what if, across the nation, a few thousand not-so-affluent folks made cassette-copies of somebody else's cassette. Yeah - they (the artist, the industry) were out the equivalent of $$$... Maybe, maybe not. A lot of those people are people who wouldn't have bought it in the first place (remember - they're not so affluent).

Today, it's Metallica being able to identify 330,000 iterations of this phenomenon. At least two orders of magnitude.

Oddly (in an introspective way), I don't have as much a problem with people doing it as I do with people justifying their actions. Like - if I can justify it, I'm not responsible -or- I'm not so bad. (But that's another conversation).

Like I said - I don't know the answer. But the current scenario, compounded by the more elusive set-ups like Gnutella... they've pretty much already predisposed a revolution of the economics governing intellectual property.

(Did that sentence just come out of my head?)

mc


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: MandolinPaul
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 04:36 PM

I'm afraid I'll have to disagree with you about the home-taping being less widespread, Mark. With the internet, we now have the ability to find out the statistics, but I'm not convinced that there were/are any less people home-taping.

Think of all of the records you've taped from others in your lifetime. If you're like me, you can't even imagine what that number would be. Are you and I any less moral than the rest of the population? We're probably a pretty good representation.

There are a lot of people doing it, and a home stereo costs way less than a computer; we just don't know the numbers.

Paul.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Bill D
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 05:53 PM

"But if I buy a CD, at $15 a shot, and don't like it after all, I'm screwed. Can't exchange it, can't get a refund. "

and it was that way with vinyl, too..is it different at $4 than at $15?...

I do not LIKE most of the music that Napster chases...it exists because of the insatiable demand for 'new' stuff every day, and $15 is a lot when it is out of style in a few months, but the solution is to strile for lower prices, not steal it.....I am rather glad Napster is being made an example...(will it work?..*shrug*)


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: SeanM
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 06:17 PM

Put the fight on hold.

Napster wins stay against injunction.

Round two begins.

M


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Charlie Baum
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 06:35 PM

If you're going to rationalize downloading a song as theft, it first requires that you subscribe to the idea that intellectual property is, in fact, property. While this may be enshrined in copyright law (with exceptions for fair use), it does not necessarily become a part of the folk's internal definition of property. Anymore than telling an ugly person you've just met that they're not ugly is seen as lying.

Long ago I came upon this passage wherein Mark Twain has Huckleberry Finn justify his theft:

-----------------

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Twain, Mark, 1835-1910 [downloaded from a public domain library on the Web]

From CHAPTER XXXI

… And then think of me! It would get all around that Huck Finn helped a nigger to get his freedom; and if I was ever to see anybody from that town again I'd be ready to get down and lick his boots for shame. That's just the way: a person does a low-down thing, and then he don't want to take no consequences of it. Thinks as long as he can hide, it ain't no disgrace. That was my fix exactly. The more I studied about this the more my conscience went to grinding me, and the more wicked and low-down and ornery I got to feeling. And at last, when it hit me all of a sudden that here was the plain hand of Providence slapping me in the face and letting me know my wickedness was being watched all the time from up there in heaven, whilst I was stealing a poor old woman's nigger that hadn't ever done me no harm, and now was showing me there's One that's always on the lookout, and ain't a-going to allow no such miserable doings to go only just so fur and no further, I most dropped in my tracks I was so scared. Well, I tried the best I could to kinder soften it up somehow for myself by saying I was brung up wicked, and so I warn't so much to blame; but something inside of me kept saying, "There was the Sunday-school, you could a gone to it; and if you'd a done it they'd a learnt you there that people that acts as I'd been acting about that nigger goes to everlasting fire."

It made me shiver. And I about made up my mind to pray, and see if I couldn't try to quit being the kind of a boy I was and be better. So I kneeled down. But the words wouldn't come. Why wouldn't they? It warn't no use to try and hide it from Him. Nor from me, neither. I knowed very well why they wouldn't come. It was because my heart warn't right; it was because I warn't square; it was because I was playing double. I was letting on to give up sin, but away inside of me I was holding on to the biggest one of all. I was trying to make my mouth say I would do the right thing and the clean thing, and go and write to that nigger's owner and tell where he was; but deep down in me I knowed it was a lie, and He knowed it. You can't pray a lie -- I found that out.

So I was full of trouble, full as I could be; and didn't know what to do. At last I had an idea; and I says, I'll go and write the letter -- and then see if I can pray. Why, it was astonishing, the way I felt as light as a feather right straight off, and my troubles all gone. So I got a piece of paper and a pencil, all glad and excited, and set down and wrote:

Miss Watson, your runaway nigger Jim is down here two mile below Pikesville, and Mr. Phelps has got him and he will give him up for the reward if you send.

HUCK FINN.

I felt good and all washed clean of sin for the first time I had ever felt so in my life, and I knowed I could pray now. But I didn't do it straight off, but laid the paper down and set there thinking -- thinking how good it was all this happened so, and how near I come to being lost and going to hell. And went on thinking. And got to thinking over our trip down the river; and I see Jim before me all the time: in the day and in the night-time, sometimes moonlight, sometimes storms, and we a-floating along, talking and singing and laughing. But somehow I couldn't seem to strike no places to harden me against him, but only the other kind. I'd see him standing my watch on top of his'n, 'stead of calling me, so I could go on sleeping; and see him how glad he was when I come back out of the fog; and when I come to him again in the swamp, up there where the feud was; and such-like times; and would always call me honey, and pet me and do everything he could think of for me, and how good he always was; and at last I struck the time I saved him by telling the men we had small-pox aboard, and he was so grateful, and said I was the best friend old Jim ever had in the world, and the only one he's got now; and then I happened to look around and see that paper.

It was a close place. I took it up, and held it in my hand. I was a-trembling, because I'd got to decide, forever, betwixt two things, and I knowed it. I studied a minute, sort of holding my breath, and then says to myself:

"All right, then, I'll go to hell" -- and tore it up.

It was awful thoughts and awful words, but they was said. And I let them stay said; and never thought no more about reforming. I shoved the whole thing out of my head, and said I would take up wickedness again, which was in my line, being brung up to it, and the other warn't. And for a starter I would go to work and steal Jim out of slavery again; and if I could think up anything worse, I would do that, too; because as long as I was in, and in for good, I might as well go the whole hog.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Alice
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 07:25 PM

When you go to a library, you can take out the book and read it, but it would be stealing from the author and publisher to copy it and start publishing it yourself. That is what has been happening with Napster. Not everyone was just listening so they could sample before buying. In the link I provided above, the article discussed the need and the acknowledgement by one of the founders of Napster, that it is necessary to provide the technology without taking work from the creators without their consent. Metallica did a service to all the "little people" who create for a living and need to be paid for their work to put food on the table. Metallica had the money for lawyers and the fame to make the issue visible.

Read the article! Protecting the work of artists and musicians is the right thing to do. If the work is out of print, then music sites could link you to something like out of print bookstores/record stores, where you find a copy. The point is, this technology can be provided in such a way that the consent of the artists can be asked BEFORE their work is used, and some other way, such as ad sales, can provide remuneration to the artist for the use of their work. We have the technology to do this in a way that better protects the livelihood and ownership of people's work. I make a living from selling the rights to reproduce my work. I have had to be constantly educating clients about copyright law, because most people just don't understand it. If your boss came to you and said, sorry, I don't think I'll pay you for last months work, would you not realize that is illegal? Why are artists and musicians expected to give their work away for free? Public domain lyrics and tunes are a different subject. I am talking about people who create for a living and need to have their work legally protected. I posted a previous thread regarding this subject called "electronic tip jar". click here That thread links to a site that discusses the Coalition for the Future of Music.click here


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Alice
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 07:34 PM

http://www.troubletown.com/cartoons/5.html


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Homeless
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 08:13 PM

Alice - I agree with you that "to copy it and start publishing it yourself" is wrong. And I would prevent that by moving whatever I'd downloaded from Napster out of the library as soon as it finished, thus keeping anyone from getting it from me (selfish, aren't I?).

Nor do I think that Napster is good, or in the right.

I know that people who use it the way I did are the exception, rather than the rule. (I can tell that based on what music is available out there.)

But I was trying to answer a direct question from DougR - How do Mudcatters feel about Napster and whether it is good for artists/industry - and I guess I just worded my answer poorly.

So, to try to be a bit more specific...
I know that the way I used it was beneficial to a couple different labels and for some independent musicians who have released CDs themselves. Musicians who I would not have otherwise known about.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Alice
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 08:45 PM

Gee, Homeless, I didn't even see your message, so I wasn't writing in response to you are any other specific post (I paused now and read what you wrote). I had just a few minutes, and as this copyright issue is part of a much larger discussion that is going on in other professional web boards, I just thought I'd add more info (fuel) to the fire.

Alice


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Alice
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 08:47 PM

... thought someone would say *something* about Neil Young in the cartoon I linked. Posted it to the Neil Young thread and no one took note of it there, either. ....ok, I'll go back to being invisible ;-)


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Homeless
Date: 28 Jul 00 - 11:55 PM

Just to throw another wrench in the works...
I just checked on Napster and there are a few people who have stuff off of bootleg CDs up. Where does this fit in with the copyright stuff? Is it ethical to steal from a thief?


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: SeanM
Date: 29 Jul 00 - 12:53 AM

Homeless,

Another level if you don't mind...

I've seen people posting Metallica live bootlegs - which they authorize.

How about this?

M


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: SeanM
Date: 29 Jul 00 - 12:58 AM

IM(nsh)O, it all boils down to this not being a black and white issue... Creative control is a wonderful thing, but how often do you think someone publishing through a major label can actually say that they have REAL control? Small labels may be hurt, but by the same token, they may be helped even more (as in Homeless and my examples). Stealing is stealing, but what if it's something that can't be stolen from the owner? I won't deny that there is piracy occuring on this and other servers, but where does that stop the RIAA and artists in general from embracing the technology (as Napster's "New Artist Program" is designed to do) as another distribution channel?

Unfortunately, I sincerely doubt that this fight will boil down to "right" or "wrong", but merely a matter of "legal" vs. "Illegal" - which are not necessarily the same criteria.

M


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Gypsy
Date: 29 Jul 00 - 01:07 AM

Okay, i'm uneducated. Have followed this whole drama, pro and con, etc. Is Napster an acronym? What does it mean? And since i'm of two minds on this particular controversy, will refrain from voicing an opinion.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: SeanM
Date: 29 Jul 00 - 01:23 AM

Gypsy;

"Napster" is a program which enables individuals to trade MP3 files of songs very easily over the net.

It is a program which lends itself very easily to piracy of copyright protected material, and this is where the controversy arises.

Napster (named after the creator's cat, no less - thus explaining the logo as well) is merely the largest and most visible of the various "file swapping" software programs.

The current dispute is based from a pair of lawsuits over copyright infringement, one lodged by the heavy metal band Metallica, the other by the RIAA. Earlier this week, they won an injunction shutting down the Napster service as of midnight PST Friday. Early Friday, Napster won a stay against this injunction.

I'm moderately pro-Napster. I see there having been abuses, but there being far more potential for the benefit of artists than the potential for abuse. Others will disagree with this. As such, I'll refer you to the Napster website itself, and leave it for others to post sites regarding the counterpoint.

Peace.

M


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: SeanM
Date: 29 Jul 00 - 01:25 AM

*sigh*. And forget to close off a second link today. Is this early CRS???

M


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Gypsy
Date: 29 Jul 00 - 01:26 AM

Thanks Sean, Husband and I were discussing the continuing saga of Napster, and segued off onto how it got it's name. Must say we came up with bright ideas as to what kind of acronym it might be. Still of two minds on this one, so will reserve opinion until i have a firmer one.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Lepus Rex
Date: 29 Jul 00 - 03:42 AM

Not much new for me to say here... One point: Most of the songs (maybe 75%?) I download (and share) from people using Napster are from people who are now dead. Who am I ripping off?

---Lepus Rex


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Lepus Rex
Date: 29 Jul 00 - 03:44 AM

Wait... Unless they STARVED to death because instead of buying their cds, people just 'stole' some mp3s... :O

---Lepus Rex


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Nicole Leonard
Date: 29 Jul 00 - 04:26 AM

I wouldn't have such a problem with Napster et al, if they had more controls and protection built in (somehow) to handle all these issues, but as it is, it seems to be a free-for-all and likely to be used "legitimately" by only a small percentage of people.

The issue is not even as straightforward as being okay for artists who put their stuff on the net for free, or for public domain stuff. As an artist on mp3.com, my songs are available for free download, but if it is downloaded from mp3.com I get paid something, if it is distributed freely in other ways (other than buying the CD), I don't receive any payment. A lot of our band's material is traditional and therefore public domain, however our recording of us performing our own arrangement of a traditional song is copyright, i.e. we don't own the copyright to the song, but we do own the copyright to our recording, and unauthorised duplication or distribution of our recording is illegal.

I can see both sides of the argument so I find it hard to be strongly for or against. I don't agree with those who argue that it is "good promotion" (implying that artists should give their work away for free and be grateful anyone listens to it!)


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Morticia
Date: 29 Jul 00 - 07:14 AM

just a a point of interest, I'd been given to understand that it was shutting down at 3am Saturday;GMT......well, it's still up and running now at 12p.m.....did it get a reprieve or did I get duff information?


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: GUEST,Barry Finn
Date: 29 Jul 00 - 08:52 AM

Could it be that there's more to blame here than the downloader & the site that provides it. A friend I sing with years ago recorded in a group called the 'Battering Ram' their recordings went into the out of print basket heap & recenty Rounder has rereleased them on CD. The members of the group that orignally recorded this have, since rerelease, never seen a cent & to try to recoup would cost them more than they'd ever realized in the start of it. I saw Sean Tyrell the other night, he has a recording out which he has to buy back at a huge cost to himself so that he can actually do something with it. Did the music industry in their greed create the hell the artist has to live in or did the listener who downloads & gets away with not paying a royality? Which came first & who carries more of the blame, who stands to reap more & who causes more damage by the rape of the artist. Clearly the artist is injured by both but the industry's concern is not for the artist but rather for themselves & there in my opinion lies the one who carries more of the blame for this rape & hence should be the one who carries most of the responsability to right the wrongs that have been commited against those that've been expolited, after all they are the ones that most of the time get the lions share of the benifits & rewards. My thoughts are that most these complaints against the people that copy without permission are more a reaction to the way the industry has structured themselves rather than just saying it's out & out thieft. If the music industry could've set themselves up in the same way as the drug industry has they would have & we would have to wait years for the FDA to approve a CD that's going to benifit our senses & soul at a cost that would bankrupt the artist & we would be dead, buried & rotted waiting for an improvement. Barry


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: GUEST,Mark C
Date: 29 Jul 00 - 10:37 AM

After reviewing the posts made since yesterday afternoon...

How is it that you have to 'rationalize' downloading a song as theft? Because it's really not there? It's just digitized data - it doesn't 'really' exist. Not like downloading that 45 under my coat. The reality is the rationalizing is NOT recognizing it as theft. You took it, it did not belong to you, it ordinarily requires payment, you did not pay.

The only way it is not theft is if aperson who is legitimately authorized to duplicate the song put the .mp3 up for everybody to use.

Someone said legal vs illegal as opposed to right vs wrong. Well... it's illegal. And any discussion about whether or not intellectual property is 'actually' property is simply more justification. The law settled that.

Nicole's comment illustrates just how clearly it IS stealing. There are alternatives that are fair to the artist, mp3.com among others. Give people the choice of getting their .mp3's from there and paying (and supporting the artist) or from Napster, where do you think they'll go...?

Explain to me the difference between it and stealing a CD. Because a CD cost money to make. Well you know what? So did the song. And it doesn't matter that the artist might be dead. It still cost money. And the people who put up the money are entitled to reap the benefit.

The difference is that pocketing a CD requires some intestinal fortitude. It puts a person at risk. Stealing the .mp3 is a nameless, faceless, riskless endeavor and, consequently, easier to rationalize doing.

If you don't like the situation - change the laws, don't break them.

Of course I could be all wrong... (I often am).

mc


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: SeanM
Date: 29 Jul 00 - 12:26 PM

Well, Mark,

For those who are using the Napster service as a strict aid for Piracy, I'm in agreement with you. That IS wrong.

However, as has been stated before - for out of print records and some rarities (and this actually is a small percentage of Napster's traffic) there is no other realistic option short of spending hours, days, weeks or months trying to locate the track through a collector or rarities vendor, and then paying an exorbitant fee of which the artist sees NOTHING from.

I've also used the service to check out songs for albums as to whether I wanted to buy it or not. For artists like Oscar Brand, the Irish Descenedants and Gaelic Storm, there is NO WAY to preview these and find out what the band sounds like. I've got 20 odd trash CDs that I picked up because I thought I'd give them a try, and now regret the $20 I dropped - being able to download and listen to a track has dramatically helped that, and enables me to now spend the money I'd have spent on a crap CD to instead support an artist that (IMO) deserves it.

MP3.com to my view isn't the gem that it's made out to be. Unfortunately, due to the relatively low number of artists on the service, I've found very few bands that I was interested in. It IS a good idea overall...

It's a complex issue... any attempt to boil it down to "you're wrong if you do this" ignores a host of other attendant issues within the larger. I'll accept "According to the RIAA, any use of Napster is wrong". Then again, according to them, you should be paying for every time you hear songs on the radio (or any other medium) and also be paying for every time you play a purchased CD.

M


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: GUEST,James Stanley
Date: 29 Jul 00 - 02:11 PM

I think the ethical considerations of using Napster is a no brainer. People have a tendency to do what is expedient and either ignore the fact that it is unethical-- or justify that use through sophistry and semantics. This problem also existed in the cable television industries with individuals pirating a cable signal through the use of a black box. You can easily get a descrambler which allows you to watch pay channels. This is theft, pure and simple. Another comparison would be the FM radio stations that play the entire album at midnight without interuption. This is a defacto distribution of a product with the intent of allowing the listeners to tape the album without paying for it. I believe that each of these are points on the scale of ethical consideration. The real danger to the artist is that technology allows the final listeners to control the distribution of the product without control from the distributor of the product. Is it ethical? No! Will it stop? Assuredly no! I made a decision that I would not use it. I have seen the process and heard music from Napster and was impressed by the technology, but I still believe that it is wrong to take advantage of the misfortune of talented people who can not be properly rewarded for their musical contributions.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: GUEST,Ely
Date: 30 Jul 00 - 12:50 AM

I would not be against Napster if it were ONLY used as a medium to "test-drive" artists--listening without downloading (after all, we do not pay to listen to the radio). Actually, I use CDnow for this--I can listen to enough clips of music to get an idea of what the artist sounds like and whether I want to pursue the album. But I would never download whole songs for the purpose of making my own CD, which is, I am sorry to say, what nearly all of my fellow students do who use Napster. If artists were paid every time someone downloaded their songs, I would not object. If I like an artist that much, I should want them to get the money they earned for their talent and the time they put into the music.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Charlie Baum
Date: 30 Jul 00 - 02:10 AM

Have we established that stealing is stealing? So Huck Finn was in the wrong, and should have returned Mrs. Douglas's property (his friend, the slave, Jim)? And the folks who helped out on the Underground Railroad were immoral thieves?

--Charlie Baum (who has wanted to be a pirate ever since he read Peter Pan)


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: GUEST,Banjo Johnny
Date: 30 Jul 00 - 10:39 PM

If the thread is not played out, I have a question. What exactly does Napster actually DO?

(A) Someone with a CD uploads a tune to the Napster system, which stores the tune. Later, someone calls Napster, requests the tune, and downloads it directly from the system.

(B) Someone with a tune in his computer calls Napster and reports its availability. Napster stores his URL as a link to that particular tune. Later, someone asks Napster where to find the tune, and Napster provides the link. The requester downloads the tune from the first user's website.

(C) Something else.

Seems a small point, but it might make a difference in the outcome of the case. Appreciate your help! == Johnny


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: GUEST,Ely
Date: 31 Jul 00 - 12:46 AM

Comparing Napster to the Underground Railroad makes no sense unless one really feels that this music exists independently and is being held hostage by the artists. Slaves were stolen from their homelands by slave traders but music owes its existence to the musicians. Yes, there is a lot of music-industry baggage, but it's usually hard to bypass it without robbing the artist, too.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Charlie Baum
Date: 31 Jul 00 - 09:24 AM

I brought up Huck Finn to show that concepts of what kinds of property can be owned have shifted over time. In the mid-1800s, the American mind-set changed to disallow the ownership of persons. I'm firmly convinced that the presence of the Internet and the ease of digital copying is bringing about a shift in mindset regarding the ownership of ideas, and of music.

My evidence is that, disregarding questions of legality of illegality, millions of people believe that violating the rules of copyright is no more morally serious than committing the illegal act of walking across a deserted street against the light at 2 in the morning. You can discuss prescriptive questions of whether people should care or not, but descriptively, the fact is that many people don't see it as a violation of folk-based mores.

--Charlie Baum


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: *Conrad Bladey Peasant-Inactive
Date: 31 Jul 00 - 11:23 AM

Napster clone/alts You might want to start using some of these so as to encourage a widespread tradition which will make shut down harder.

## Gnutella: -------------

Gnutella - http://gnutella.wego.com/

Surfy! Gnutella - http://www.surfy.com/page/nut.php3 A web-based front end to searching the Gnutella network.

Gnutella for Macintosh - http://gnutella-mac.n3.net/ Information site for Furi, a Java Gnutella client for the Macintosh and OS/2.

Mactella - http://www.cxc.com/ Mac Client for Gnuttela

Gnutellanet - http://www.zeropaid.com/gnutella/, http://www.zeropaid.com/gnusearch Zeropaid's "filesharing portal"

Gnu-World - http://www.surfacelayer.nu/gnuworld/basic.shtml Links, downloads, message board and full explanations of Gnutella client software features.

Gnutty - http://www.gnutty.co.uk/ A Gnutella news and information portal aimed at non-technical people as well as programmers.

Beginners guide to Gnutella - http://music.zdnet.com/features/gnutella/ Five-step guide to using Gnutella client software.

## Other Systems: ------------------

Freenet - http://freenet.sourceforge.net/ Anonymous, decentralized filesharing

CuteMX - http://www.cuteftp.com/products/cutemx/ Client to client media exchange program from the makers of CuteFTP.

FileFury - http://www.filefury.com/ Distributed file sharing with no central node.

FileSwap - http://www.fileswap.com/ Allows users to search for and share mp3, video, images and other files, as well as chat and messaging features.

Freebase file sharing community - http://www.oreality.com/ Freebase allows users to share any type of file. Instant messaging and Gnutella compatability is currently being added.

FreeNet - http://freenet.sourceforge.net/ Distributed system for semi-privately storing documents.

iMesh - http://www.imesh.com/ User-to-user exchange community.

Konspire - http://www.csuglab.cornell.edu/Info/People/jcr13/HardenedCriminal/konspire/konsp ire.html A searchable, distributed file sharing system with resumable file transfers.

Scour Exchange - http://www.scour.net/Software/Scour_Media_Agent/ Napster-like for all formats

## Some perspective on the issues: ----------------------------------

Andy Oram: Gnutella and Freenet Represent True Technological Innovation http://www.oreillynet.com/pub/a/network/2000/05/12/magazine/gnutella.html

Andy Oram: The Value of Gnutella and Freenet http://www.webreview.com/pub/2000/05/12/platform/index.html

# distributed via : no commercial use without permission # is a moderated mailing list for net criticism, # collaborative text filtering and cultural politics of the nets # more info: majordomo@b... and "info nettime-l" in the msg body # archive: http://www.nettime.org contact: nettime@b...

Conrad


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: GUEST,Ely
Date: 31 Jul 00 - 08:45 PM

Sorry, #1Peasant, I'm all for shutdown unless the sites change to benefit those that earned it.

I guess I just feel that the "ease of digital copying" and the shift in public mindset about ownership of ideas enabled by the internet is another way of saying it makes it easier and less guilt-triggering to steal other people's writing, music, etc. since we don't have any direct contact with them and we're sitting safely at our home computer, not stuffing CD's into our pockets in the music shop. But it amounts to the same thing.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: *Conrad Bladey Peasant-Inactive
Date: 31 Jul 00 - 08:53 PM

actually I think there is too much recorded music everyone busy buying or stealing or selling and no one singing and playing!

Cb


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 01 Aug 00 - 12:12 PM

Some things are "property" prior to any law. The laws protecting such "property" exist to safeguard what is already "property" by custom. Personal property--for example your clothes, the things in your pockets, your car, your house and everything in it--is property of this kind.

Other forms of "property" are entirely creatures of statute. Absent the law defining them as "property", such "property" would not exist. So-called "intellectual property", to the extent that it is "property" at all, is "property" of this kind. It is "property" only because of a deliberate, arbitrary public policy to create such "property".

Most discussions that label copyright infringement as "theft" without any qualification whatsoever seem to ignore this important distinction between property-by-deep-custom and "property"-by-arbitrary-pragmatic-policy. To put the matter more bluntly: those who speak this way are using a kind of lexical bait-and-switch, trying to arouse people's emotional response to theft of tangible personal property and then have it attach to infringement of an arbitrary government-granted monopoly privilege. The things are quite different. To steal personal property is to attack the fundamental order of society. To infringe a government-granted monopoly privilege is to defy society's administrative order. In this respect copyright infringement has more in common with moonshining than it has with theft.

The monopoly privileges are granted for a purpose. The original purpose was to reward the English Crown's favorites with lucrative monopolies and to suppress "seditious" publications: the London Stationer's company became the Crown's censor. The modern purpose of copyright is more benign: "To promote the progress of Science and Useful Arts", that is, to give writers and their publishers a chance to exploit their writings for a time without competition from rival publishers, thereby creating an orderly market for new writings. Once the author has had his chance, though, free market values take over: the work enters the public domain and anyone may exploit it commercially.

The implication here is clear: granting copyrights and patents is a real-world compromise of the free-market philosophy. A freedom which the public had, absent the monopoly, is infringed by the monopoly. (It might even be said that it is the monopolist who is "stealing" from the public.) In theory, though, the monopoly grants are agreed to on all sides. In theory the public, through its representatives, has sacrificed the margin of its freedom in the short term for greater freedom in the long term. If the monopolies encourage new writing, then after the monopolies expire the public domain will be larger than it would otherwise have been. Unfortunately the practice deviates from the theory. Copyright law is not now written with the ultimate goal of enlarging the public domain by encouraging creativity. The laws are written more for the benefit of the moneyed interests than for the benefit of the public.

The foremost problem in modern copyright is not, as the special interests seem to think, widespread infringement by means of digital computer networks. Rather, it is the use of the legislative process by the special interests to prosecute their centuries-long attack on the public domain.

I have no MP3 software, and have never logged on to Napster. I attempt to abide by the copyright law and not to post protected material on the web beyond what I consider to be the boundaries of fair use. But as long as the Money keeps up its brutal attack on the public domain, I don't plan to shed many tears over the Money's difficulties (if they even exist) with Napster and similar peer-to-peer file sharing programs.

T.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: annamill
Date: 01 Aug 00 - 01:20 PM

I can sorta see both sides of this issue because I'm about to open a video store that could potentially fail because we may be able to download any movie we like at any time for nothing. I'm a little nervous about the whole thing. As much as I enjoy to download music, and understand the freedom stuff, I find myself hoping Napster fails. Sorry.

I keep rationalizing to myself that even if there is a problem, it will be a few years before I'm affected. I sure hope I'm not lying to me.

Another point of view.

Love, annap


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Ed Pellow
Date: 01 Aug 00 - 03:25 PM

To those who are 'anti' napster:

Let him who has never taped an album from a friend cast the first stone


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: GUEST, Banjo Johnny
Date: 01 Aug 00 - 04:19 PM

With apologies to "T", my fellow Sooner who writes so well, it's true that 'theft' is a bit strong, but so are your own terms such as 'lucrative monopoly', and 'brutal attack'. See how easy it is to fall into emotional language?

I've had a career in live music, so I'm not directly affected by copyright problems. I have done lots of original songs, and if anyone thinks they are worth recording, fine with me. However, if I were in the CD "bidness" I would be really concerned about MP3.

Certainly the copying problem didn't begin with Internet, but digital recording has aggravated the problem since it's so easy to make any number of perfect copies of anything you can download. When movies go on Internet you will really see the feathers fly.

Remember that the recording companies lay out a great deal of money to produce and advertise albums. Why would they continue to risk their money on CD's if they can be so easily shortchanged? Maybe they will go back to cassettes!

I don't think the term 'free market' means everything should be free. It means sellers are free to ask whatever price they can get. If all music were free, how would musicians make a living?

== Johnny in Oklahoma City


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: SeanM
Date: 01 Aug 00 - 04:57 PM

Johnny,

Movies are already on the internet. Not defending or attacking, but one application of the Law Of Unintended Consequences of shutting down Napster will be the upsurge in THOSE files being traded, as people who were previously on MP3-only Napster are introduced to the others, where ANY digital format (software, MP3, digital movie) can be traded.

Just a note.

M


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 01 Aug 00 - 06:20 PM

(off topic)Banjo Johnny, just a reminder of the OCTMA meeting this Saturday.(/offtopic)

I have been trying to acquire a certain record for many months now. I ordered the CD, and the response came back "Unavailable: Out of Print". Then I ordered the cassette, and the response came back "Unavailable: Out of Print". I am not a lawyer, this is not legal advice, etc. etc, but I think that privately to tape a friend's copy under these circumstances would constitute a fair use even if home taping weren't permitted elsewhere in the statute. If I were to get an MP3 from Napster (which I haven't, as noted in my earlier post), would that be any different ? Well, yes, because someone who lists his MP3 files on Napster makes them available to all comers, not just to certain specific individuals. Does this amount to contributory infringement in Napster's part ? Does Napster's "substantial noninfringing use" outweigh this ? Maybe. Maybe not. I have mixed feelings, both about what the law is and about what it should be in this case.

But the broader issue remains: the special interests are trying to push back the boundaries of fair use and the public domain, and are so far more successful than they deserve to be. I frankly think the Money isn't entitled to much sympathy from me on its "problem" with Napster (if it even has one) until the Money is ready to recognize that copyright exists for the sake of the public domain. If I were a federal legislator, I would block any attempt at a legislative "solution" to MP3-related "problems" unless I got a quid-pro-quo in the form of a repeal of Title 1 of the Copyright Term Extension Act and of the anti-circumvention provisions of the Digital Millenium Copyright Act. Even then my support for the "solutions" would depend on the precise form they took.

T.


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: Charlie Baum
Date: 01 Aug 00 - 06:21 PM

There's a wonderful book that I've been involved in the publication of called The Digital Dilemma. The blue clicky thing will take you to a page about the book, and once there, you can actually read the entire book on-line--the National Academy Press is one of the first presses in America to put many of its materials completely on-line. It expects that you'll be interested enough that you might want to buy the book. Chapter 2 is entitled "Music: Intellectual Property's Canaryin the Digital Coal Mine." The book looks at many issues, including the difficulty of defining "copy," and the growing use of licensing to replace copyright in the world of software and digital information.

The authors want to continue intellectual property as a concept, but realize that whatever changes occur as the law, technology, and public policy respond to the ease of duplication, we need to preserve the rights of fair use and eventual public domain.

Disclosure: I work for the publisher, National Academy Press, but that's not why I'm providing this link. I just think the book has a lot of interesting things to say about the issues brought to the forefront by the Napster dispute.

--Charlie Baum


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: SeanM
Date: 01 Aug 00 - 06:55 PM

As a mildly related topic, The LA Times today carried a story that Steven King's new Internet-Only serial was issued on an honor system of "Pay $1 if you download it and enjoy it". He's currently claiming an approximately 75% success rate. Food for thought, at least.

M


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: GUEST, Banjo Johnny
Date: 01 Aug 00 - 07:23 PM

I'm all for Steven King's venture if that's the way he wants to sell the book, but I have *heard* that it costs $1 for each chapter, and if he doesn't get enough money he will quit right in the middle. That makes it something of a gamble for the reader. == Johnny


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Subject: RE: Napster
From: GUEST,Okiemockbird
Date: 02 Aug 00 - 12:14 PM

Here and here are some news articles about peer-to-peer swapping of needlepoint patterns. Some of the issues resemble those raised in the debate over Napster.

T.


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