Feeds

Fans, industry await today's Napster appeal ruling

Will judicial triumvirate shut Napster down or not?

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

Napster and its opponents in the music industry are awaiting with bated breath the pronouncement of the US Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, will state later today whether the MP3 sharing software company will face trial for alleged contributory copyright infringement.

The background to today's announcement is the Recording Industry Association of America's legal assault on Napster, which last July saw the US District Court of San Francisco shut the company down. Napster immediately appealed against that temporary injunction, and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the software company could continue operations until its fate is decided at trial.

The RIAA subsequently moved to appeal against the appeal, a move that saw both sides - Napster's legal team now augmented by David Boies, he of Microsoft anti-trust trial fame - present cases to a triumvirate of Appeal Court judges. Presentations and counter-arguments were made, and the tribunal declared it would rule in due course.

Since then, Napster has formed an alliance with one of the RIAA's main members, German media giant Bertelsmann, and promised to come up with a subscription-based business model and to ensure that shared songs can be tracked for royalty payment and copyright protection purposes.

The result of that work is expected to go live in a June/July timeframe, according to recent pronouncements from Bertelsmann.

That may have helped Napster's case - while it doesn't acknowledge that the RIAA has a case, it is making an effort to address the organisation's concerns. That said, Bertelsmann's recording industry fellows are largely sceptical - at least in public - that its partnership with Napster will bear fruit.

Napster may also be hoping that its joint promotional deal with online music seller CDNow has helped to show that the availability of songs on its sharing service boosts CD sales. That deal only began last month, however, so it may be too soon to say whether sampling a song on Napster persuades music fans to buy the album. ®

Related Stories

Napster bans Manic Street Preachers swaps
AOL Time Warner poo-poos Napster-BMG deal
Napster on lots of PCs, claims stealth-research firm
Napster and co. violate copyright, users admit

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
Stick a 4K in them: Super high-res TVs are DONE
4,000 pixels is niche now... Don't say we didn't warn you
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series
Amazon Studios, Ridley Scott firm to produce The Man in the High Castle
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Bose says today is F*** With Dre Day: Beats sued in patent battle
Music gear giant seeks some of that sweet, sweet Apple pie
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
Too many IT conferences to cover? MICROSOFT to the RESCUE!
Yet more word of cuts emerges from Redmond
Joe Average isn't worth $10 a year to Mark Zuckerberg
The Social Network deflates the PC resurgence with mobile-only usage prediction
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.