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Napster Inc.

Self Description

January 2002: "Napster is the world's leading file sharing community. Napster's software application enables users to locate and share media files from one convenient, easy-to-use interface. It also provides media fans a forum to communicate their interests and tastes with one another via instant messaging, chat rooms, and Hot List user bookmarks."

Third-Party Descriptions

September 2011: "Still, Qtrax is relying primarily on the ads linked to the music player to finance licensing fees and to make the company profitable — a business model that many industry experts are skeptical can work. They point to previous hopefuls like Napster, which was sued by the record labels over copyright laws and is now a shadow of its former self (and now charges subscription fees for music) and to SpiralFrog and Ruckus, which had some backing from the major labels but collapsed after failing to raise enough cash to cover royalties to the record companies."

February 2008: "While the music and movie industries have won court victories against file-sharing services like Kazaa, Grokster and Napster, analysts said that the Pirate Bay case has a symbolic dimension because of the public way in which the operators have thumbed their noses at media companies."


RoleNameTypeLast Updated
Organization Head/Leader (past or present) Michael Bebel Person Oct 25, 2005
Organization Head/Leader (past or present) Founded/Co-Founded by Employee/Freelancer/Contractor (past or present) Shawn Fanning Person
Founded/Co-Founded by Sean Parker Person Jul 1, 2013

Articles and Resources

Date Resource Read it at:
Sep 03, 2011 O.K., Downloaders, Let’s Try This Song Again

QUOTE: Qtrax’s ambitions may seem quixotic, but it does offer something distinct in the current market: free and legal music downloa

New York Times
Feb 09, 2008 A Tight Grip Can Choke Creativity

QUOTE: [Rowling] is essentially claiming one else can use [her characters] without her permission....copyright holders have tried to impose rules on the rest of us — through threats and litigation — that were never intended to be part of copyright law...

New York Times
Feb 01, 2008 Sweden Accuses 4 of Copyright Offenses

QUOTE: ...authorities say that [the Pirate Bay Web site] helps others violate copyright laws by linking providers of pirated songs and films with people searching for the material. The site has become the focus of the entertainment industry’s fight against the unauthorized digital copying of films, games and music.

New York Times
Jun 06, 2007 Copyright Silliness on Campus

QUOTE: The House committees responsible for copyright and education wrote a joint letter May 1 scolding the presidents of 19 major American universities, demanding that each school respond to a six-page questionnaire detailing steps it has taken to curtail illegal music and movie file-sharing on campus. One of the questions -- "Does your institution expel violating students?" -- shows just how out-of-control the futile battle against campus downloading has become.

Washington Post
Aug 29, 2006 Universal Backs Free Music Rival to iTunes

QUOTE: reflects the music industry’s eagerness to experiment with various digital business models and to find a way to overcome piracy and illegal copying...record executives have begun to chafe at Apple’s dominance in the online market, particularly its insistence on a one-size-fits-all pricing model, saying it has restricted the growth of digital sales.

New York Times
Aug 21, 2006 Screwed for Sure

QUOTE: The rumor mill is still buzzing about Microsoft's new Zune digital music player....the revelation that Microsoft's own Zune player will not support their stores despite this longstanding partnership...must feel like a serious betrayal of trust..

Aug 21, 2006 Now the Music Industry Wants Guitarists to Stop Sharing

QUOTE: trade groups representing music publishers have used the threat of copyright lawsuits to shut down guitar tablature sites, where users exchange tips on how to play songs...The tablature sites argue that they are merely conduits for an online discussion about guitar techniques, and that their services help the industry.

New York Times
Jun 15, 2006 U.S. Joins Industry in Piracy War: Nations Pressed On Copyrights

QUOTE: The U.S. government has joined forces with the entertainment industry to stop the freewheeling global bazaar in pirated movies and music, pressuring foreign governments to crack down or risk incurring trade barriers.

Washington Post
Jun 04, 2006 A Showdown in Sweden Between Pirates and Police

QUOTE: the Motion Picture Association of America -- the trade group of the major Hollywood movie studios -- announced that Swedish authorities had shut down Pirate Bay, , one of the largest BitTorrent trackers on the Web.

Washington Post
Nov 07, 2005 Legal Pressure Shutters Grokster: Recording Industry Cheers Move

QUOTE: Entertainment industry executives called the settlement a milestone in their ongoing legal battles to contain file-sharing, which is used by hundreds of millions of people around the world. The executives hope other services, such as Kazaa, Morpheus and LimeWire, will follow Grokster's lead.

Washington Post
Oct 01, 2005 June Supreme Court Ruling Taking Toll on Music Sharing

QUOTE: [Sam Yagan, the inventor of eDonkey said] his site has been forced to do an about-face and start charging its users for songs, a significant victory for the music industry and a radical change for the tens of millions of downloaders who have never paid for a song.

Washington Post
Sep 26, 2005 Copyright lawsuit challenges Google's vision of digital 'library': Authors and publishers balk at the firm's ambitious plan to digitize world's information, saying it needs their permission.

QUOTE: ...a lawsuit filed in federal court in New York last week against Google and its Google Print Project... Brought by the 8,000- member Authors Guild, the suit seeks damages and an injunction to halt Google's project, claiming it violates copyright because authors have not first given permission to use their works.

Christian Science Monitor
Dec 11, 2002 Piracy is Progressive Taxation, and Other Thoughts on the Evolution of Online Distribution

QUOTE: ...Obscurity is a far greater threat to authors and creative artists than piracy....Piracy is progressive taxation....Customers want to do the right thing, if they can....Shoplifting is a bigger threat than piracy.... File sharing networks don't threaten book, music, or film publishing. They threaten existing publishers...."Free" is eventually replaced by a higher-quality paid service....There's more than one way to do it.
Aug 21, 2002 A New Tactic in the Download War: Online 'Spoofing' Turns the Tables on Music Pirates

QUOTE: "spoof" files have been anonymously posted to the hugely popular sites where music fans illegally trade songs...Recording Industry Association of America, has called it a legitimate way to combat piracy.

Washington Post
Aug 17, 2002 Record Labels Want 4 Internet Providers to Block Music Site

QUOTE: ...record companies asked a judge yesterday to order four major Internet service providers to block Americans from viewing a China-based Web site that offers thousands of copyrighted songs free of charge.

New York Times
Aug 12, 2002 The New Napsters

QUOTE: There's more free downloading of music than ever. The big labels hate it--but shutting down the outlaw networks won't be so easy this time.

Jun 24, 2002 The RIAA Strikes Back: No Sharing Anytime

QUOTE: The Recording Industry Association of America has begun aggressively pursuing companies whose employees have created mini-Napsters by downloading tunes onto company servers...

Mar 13, 2002 Chained melodies

QUOTE: Copyright-holding corporations are pushing new laws and computer-crippling technologies in their war on piracy. But can anything keep geeks from copying the music and movies they crave?

Jan 31, 2002 Plaintiffs Sought Timeout After Turn in Napster Case

QUOTE: The major record companies, which two weeks ago surprised analysts by seeking a temporary suspension in their copyright lawsuit against Napster, were about to face potentially damaging inquiries into their own behavior on maintaining copyrights.

New York Times
Feb 09, 2001 The Napster Parasites: Online Marketers Are Snooping Around in Your Hard Drive, Taking Notes On Every MP3 File You Download.

QUOTE: Hard-drive snooping is the latest in online grass-roots marketing, and Napster is helping...