Legal Issues of The Napster Website Essay

Legal Issues of The Napster Website Essay

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Napster, an idea from the head of a teenager redefined the Internet and the music industry forever. The Napster website concept is simple: its creator hoped to design a "program that allows computer users to swap MP3s with one another directly (aka Peer to Peer File Sharing), without going through a middleman. Napster had achieved a tremendous level of success, but it once was a controversial service that spurred what is still one of the greatest Internet-related debates: Just because we can get the music we want without paying for it, should we?, although it is technically a file sharing program that has a central server. However, this simple idea has caused one of the biggest Internet revolutions in history, growing in popularity. It has also caused retaliation from the Recording Industry Association of America, which has unleashed its anger in the form of many lawsuits against Napster for copyright infringement. Napster has also divided musicians and the music industry like no other issue in recent memory. In this essay I will speak about MP3, peer to peer file sharing, legal troubles, where Napster is now, and a conclusion of this all. (Hart)
First, MP3 crazes were fueled by sites like On these sites, anyone may upload a song. The songs are then stored on a server that is part of the website. After other users can connect to the site and download songs that have been uploaded. Another way of obtaining MP3 files is to perform a search on the title or artist that you are looking for. The search would return a lot of links that were broken, meaning that the page could not be found. In early 1999, Shawn Fanning began to develop an ideas to better this market of finding MP3s. He thought that there should be a way to crea...

... middle of paper ... payment and royalty fees for their songs being downloaded and shared. These artists should be getting money for their music being sold just like how they are given royalty money for selling CDs. The main reason for Napster being shutdown was the lawsuits for piracy. (Tyson)
After a US $2.43 million takeover offer by the Private Media Group, an adult entertainment company, Napster's brand and logos were acquired at bankruptcy auction by Roxio which used them to rebrand the Press play music service as Napster 2.0. In September 2008, Napster was purchased by US electronics retailer Best Buy for US $121 million. On December 1, 2011, Napster merged with Rhapsody. Best Buy will receive a minority stake in Rhapsody. On June 3, 2013, Napster became available in 14 more countries in Europe; it had already been available in Germany and the United Kingdom. (Chacksfield)

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