The Napster Debate Essay Research Paper The — страница 2

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Offspring’s website, the band said, “MP3 technology and programs such as Napster [are] a vital and necessary means to promote music and foster better relationships with our fans.” ( The Offspring’s last album, Americana, before commercial release became available illegally online, yet it is the band’s best-selling album to date. A number of surveys have proven that Napster users buy more CDs after sampling songs online ( This issue builds the core of the RIAA lawsuit, whether or not Napster and similar applications will mean reduced CD sales. Napster does challenge the traditional distribution of music, but whether this should be viewed as a threat or a new medium the music industry

can exploit creates another issue. Some record labels, notably Epitaph (, partnered with sites like to sell full albums and single songs in MP3 format over the web. In this case, the record company gained a new distribution method rather than seeing it as the “enemy”. The record company still gets a cut of the profits, while the artists’ whose songs are downloaded through Napster don’t. Napster creates a free and convenient way to get music compared to visiting record stores, making it appealing. Napster also facilitates international distribution for unsigned artists, threatening record labels. Previously, without being signed to a record label an artist could not get the exposure to make a living as a musician. The Internet allows

sites like and Napster to aid struggling artists. The music industry’s response to Napster compares to the response to the introduction of cassette and VHS tapes. The technologies allowed people to record and duplicate copyrighted information, and at the time these were seen as threats to the respective industries. Time has proven that tape recordings are no substitute for professional, commercial recordings. The same can be said for Napster. Songs can be downloaded but do not produce CD quality and complete albums can rarely be found on Napster. After downloading an MP3 it can only be listened to on a computer or a walkman-style device, such as RIO. Compact discs can be listened to almost anywhere; on a computer, stereo, Walkman, car, and etc. MP3’s can be written to

compact discs but the level of expertise required to create a CD’s results in it being easier to buy a commercial CD. When a consumer purchases a CD, they receive extras such as artwork, lyrics, pictures and other liner information, making the CD more valuable. New advancements in multimedia components for computers allow video footage, photos, games, and etc., to be included on the CD. Just as people still purchase and rent videos even though they can record movies from TV, people will continue to buy CDs, encouraged more if prices are reduced and extras given away with the music. Then Napster could be seen as a “try before you buy” application for the music industry not an enemy. Bibliography Brown, Janelle. “Napster throws Metallica a curveball.” (2000). 13 Mar. 2001

( Clarke, Ian. FreeNet Page. 17 Feb. 2001 ( Fanning, Shawn. Napster Page. 17 Feb. 2001 ( company) Kohn, Robert H. E-Music Page. 17 Feb. 2001 ( Moinvvaziri, Nathan. Gnutella Page. 17 Feb. 2001 ( Page. 17 Feb. 2001 ( The Offspring. The Offspring Page/MP3 Technology and Napster. 19 Feb. 2001 ( Rosen, Hilary B. RIAA / Who We Are Page 17 Feb. 2001 ( Who.cfm) Rosen, Hilary B. RIAA / FAQ on Napster and Digital Music Page. 17 Feb. 2001 ( Smith, Tony. “Napster exiles 230,000 more

alleged music pirates.” (2001). 18 Feb. 2001 ( Smith, Tony. “MP3 Fans buy more CDs than non-fans – survey.“ (2001). 18 Feb. 2001 ( Smith, Tony. “Napster Details Copyright Case Defence.” (2000). 18 Feb. 2001 ( USA Today. “Napster not Protected by Copyright Law.” (2000). 14 Mar. 2001 ( USA Today. “Napster claims Injunction Unwarranted.“ (2000). 14 Mar. 2001 (