Once again, Jimmy, you are listening to what you want to hear. I would suspect it is because you are in denial as to the basic premise of your argument. The premise that you have built this on is that you should be able to hear it before you buy it. And you then went on to say that you have bought a number of CD's on that basis. The conclusion you are trying to convince us of is that therefore Napster and its clones are good for us. Let us begin with your premise, which is
One should be able to hear it before you buy it. You even have stones to draw the "test drive a car" analogy. What's wrong with the premise is that there are very good ways to hear the music first. One is to go to a concert. Another is to go to the website and listen to the sound clips. The idea that somehow, until Napster came along, we had to buy a pig in a poke is ridiculous and patently untrue. Every shop I know will let you hear the music and has stations for it. All the good websites, including Folk Legacy, allow you to download clips to get a taste. That shoots your whole premise to hell. The problem with your analogy is that it doesn't hold water. You can "test drive" a CD. I just told you how. You could also borrow it from a friend. When one test drives an auto before buying it, it is for the purpose of purchasing that. And the seller will have to physically relinquish any rights to the vehicle for a fee paid. But that doesn't mean you own the rights to the design of the vehicle or its systems. That remains the "intellectual property" of the company that produced the vehicle. So it is with a CD. You can resell the damn thing and I could care less. But, using your analogy, you say you have the right to keep the car and sell the company's design. Go ahead and try that one on GMC. You don't have the right. And you don't have the right to buy one CD and give away the music to anyone you want and retain the CD. You only have the right to keep or relinquish the physical unit you bought.
To your conclusion. Napster could be good for us, but only if it completely retooled it philosophy. It would have to retool the idea that it has the right to share any file it chooses to create. It is the ultimate arrogance or ignorance (I suspect a combination of both plus greed) to think that you have the right to steal my property just because the technology exists to do so. And you take comfort because your way is popular. Many evils, in the course of it all, have been popular. It is because it is usually easier and more convenient to be evil. And all you have to do is not think about it and everything is fine. If this company would but include in its corporate creed the desire to make sure that the appropriate parties are compensated, and then use its technology to deliver this product in a convenient and low cost way, the possibilties would be endless. I could see places like Folk Legacy lining up to use the software on their sites. I could see independent artists like my band using it. And I could see the consumer having an easy, low cost way to purchase music. But as long as everyone continues to find ways to rationalize theft, we will not see that day. And I and other will continue to fight you on it. Stealing is stealing.