Who was Napster?

             Imagine you're in a small band, in a small county, with a small amount of money. You have an incredible amount of talent, but no way to get your music into the mainstream without cash. You have sent demos of your work to dozens of record companies without any replies. What could you possibly do? .

             In this new age of technology, there is one very obvious choice, Napster. For those of you who don't know, Napster is a program that allows you to trade music with thousands of other people across the world. Hundreds of unknown bands have put their music on Napster, free of charge, and have struck big time deals with record companies. This is the greatest marketing tool to hit the music market in history. Unfortunately, Napster is under a lot of pressure from some big name record companies. .

             It all began a little over a year ago when Metallica began hounding the Supreme Court about Napster. They claimed that when Napster allows their users to trade music that is copyrighted, they are infringing their writes. Is this true? Well, that's not up to me or you to decide, it's up to the courts. The trial is currently pending, and the Federal District Court has issued a pre-trial injunction ordering Napster to block the trading of specific music files at the request of copyright holders.

             As far as I'm concerned, whether or not Napster gets shut down isn't that big of an issue to me, because online music trading cannot be stopped. Online music is traded in MP3 format, instead of in WAV., which is what format is on a CD. An MP3 is basically a compressed WAV. file, allowing less of a computers hard drive to be taken up, but cannot be played in a regular CD player. Trading is done on Napster through a central database that controls everything, and because of this, it can be shut down. But there are several programs already on the market that don't have a central server, thus cannot be shut down.

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