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Ouch, we've been Napstered

GUEST,Lindsay 24 Dec 00 - 02:55 PM
GUEST,Steve 23 Dec 00 - 03:14 PM
GUEST,Will 22 Dec 00 - 04:54 PM
GUEST,Will 22 Dec 00 - 04:15 PM
GUEST,Big Mick 22 Dec 00 - 01:45 PM
GUEST,Big Mick 22 Dec 00 - 01:41 PM
GUEST,Will 22 Dec 00 - 11:36 AM
AKS 22 Dec 00 - 04:33 AM
Margo 21 Dec 00 - 07:14 PM
GUEST,Will 21 Dec 00 - 02:25 PM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 21 Dec 00 - 02:05 PM
wildlone 21 Dec 00 - 01:13 PM
GUEST,Russ 21 Dec 00 - 11:42 AM
Grab 21 Dec 00 - 11:35 AM
Matt_R 21 Dec 00 - 10:48 AM
JedMarum 21 Dec 00 - 08:33 AM
Big Mick 21 Dec 00 - 06:38 AM
Knicke 21 Dec 00 - 01:35 AM
Matt_R 20 Dec 00 - 10:40 PM
GutBucketeer 20 Dec 00 - 09:58 PM
Matt_R 20 Dec 00 - 07:02 PM
Margo 20 Dec 00 - 06:27 PM
Bert 20 Dec 00 - 06:18 PM
Dave Swan 20 Dec 00 - 05:41 PM
Margo 20 Dec 00 - 01:35 PM
GUEST,Lindsay 20 Dec 00 - 01:29 PM
Dave Wynn 19 Dec 00 - 06:15 PM
Matt_R 19 Dec 00 - 06:01 PM
GUEST,skeptic 19 Dec 00 - 05:54 PM
Grab 19 Dec 00 - 11:30 AM
GUEST,Big Mick 19 Dec 00 - 11:26 AM
Gervase 19 Dec 00 - 11:22 AM
Lepus Rex 19 Dec 00 - 10:39 AM
GUEST,leeneia 19 Dec 00 - 10:18 AM
John P 19 Dec 00 - 05:07 AM
Seamus Kennedy 19 Dec 00 - 04:10 AM
GUEST,Jimmy 19 Dec 00 - 02:21 AM
Big Mick 19 Dec 00 - 01:28 AM
GUEST,Jimmy 19 Dec 00 - 01:08 AM
JedMarum 18 Dec 00 - 07:30 PM
Alice 18 Dec 00 - 07:27 PM
GUEST,Big Mick 18 Dec 00 - 07:04 PM
Zebedee 18 Dec 00 - 06:57 PM
catspaw49 18 Dec 00 - 06:55 PM
Seamus Kennedy 18 Dec 00 - 06:48 PM
Zebedee 18 Dec 00 - 06:42 PM
catspaw49 18 Dec 00 - 06:39 PM
Sorcha 18 Dec 00 - 05:48 PM
GUEST,Big Mick 18 Dec 00 - 05:36 PM
SeanM 18 Dec 00 - 04:50 PM
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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,Lindsay
Date: 24 Dec 00 - 02:55 PM

Definitely some well thought out arguments in this thread. Mick makes some excellent points. I find I agree with him. Rationalizing that theft is okay because it's been around for so long, everyone does it, or Napster isn't doing anything that hasn't been done before does nothing but add to the moral erosion.

I'm not condeming anyone, merely stating that I have chosen to etch my lines in bedrock wherever possible. I view Napster as a sanitized license to steal what belongs to someone else. Again, it's not my job to judge anyone.

Lindsay


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,Steve
Date: 23 Dec 00 - 03:14 PM

Great dialog.

Perhaps the publishers and artist need to get together and solve the royalties issues before the music is released to the public. It seems to me this is similar to the issues that arose with the popularity of radio.

This may be an opportunity to correct the injusticise in airplay royalties that have yet to be addressed.

Correcting the problems while still in control of your intellectual property seems the most efficient to me.

Steve


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,Will
Date: 22 Dec 00 - 04:54 PM

Just a little light reading RE: all this banter...

[url]http://www.redherring.com/mag/issue86/mag-intellectual-86.html[/url]


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,Will
Date: 22 Dec 00 - 04:15 PM

I find it invigorating when people get this worked up about a topic, it's interesting to see what side of them comes out and yours has come through in spades. Kudos to you. No offense taken no apologies needed.

I guess I also see bands like Metallica who are suing Napster and their fans... and just have to wonder of the logic there. "Hey... these guys are distributing our music without our consent... lets sue the fans... the people who brought us to where we are and still keep us fed." I have learned of a wealth of bands on the internet, and spent hundreds if not thousands of dollars going to live shows, buying CD's, books, merch... but only because I have found them online. I live in a city where we have 2 classic rock stations (they say they play new music... but they don't...) the concerts that come through town are mostly garbage. And there is no real feed for what's new in the music world. Or for what has been (delta blues for example)

If people would stop looking at the money factor, just stop... right now... quit it... look at it as a promotional tool. How many of us are going to get rich making music? Not many. How many of us are going to see slight returns on online distribution. Few. How many of us can use the Internet to distribute digital copies of lesser quality to thousands of people who normally would have never heard of us? All of us.

..."and I came to a point in my life where I sat down, sought a definition of intellectual property, opened my eyes to what I was doing to hardworking artists, and came to the conclusion that theft is just that."

Huzzah to you for developing a policy and sticking to it, it shows character.

"...seek to mitigate your guilt because it has been convenient and you like being able to do it."

Most of the artists I have downloaded recently have been rarities and hard to find items. Things a guy just can't get up here in Calgary Alberta. If I can get them I do, and happily so, but only after to listening to select songs and deciding if this CD is really worth spending $30+ on. I have no guilt about doing this... HMV and a lot of the other major record chains have developed such technology in their stores. Where you can take a CD and have a listen to it before you buy it. Makes for happy consumers, problem is... you find me an HMV with the CD's I wish to buy in their listeners booths... you won't. If I liked Ricky Martin and all the juggy pop stars of today I wouldn't be having this conversation with you right now.

Internet piracy will never go away, fortunately or unfortunately. Online distribution of digital format music will probably never see the light of day. But I do see the internet moving in such a way within the next two years that will spark a major wave in the artists VS. record label battle.(At least I hope I will)

But then again... there is a part of me that wishes music was never given the capitalist stamp it has today. Too much marketing involved... too much to do with fashion and pretty faces.. not enough soul in the music.

It's all so damned confusing... why can't a guy just write songs and leave all the political BS out of it?

Anyways... of to make snow angels and do a few grab and runs on the way home. (stealing is a much better way to get your Christmas shopping done)

Sardonically yours,

Will


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,Big Mick
Date: 22 Dec 00 - 01:45 PM

And Will, please accept my apologies for the opening bit of that last post. I was being snippy and arrogant. I am sorry for any insult I caused. Sometimes my passions get the best of me.

Big Mick


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,Big Mick
Date: 22 Dec 00 - 01:41 PM

Geez, Will, and you were doing so well.........but then you show yourself for a real lightweight when you come to your finale......I had such hopes.....sigh

It's like this, bro. You can't mix up two things, and if you would read CAREFULLY and exercise intellect and a sense of right and wrong, you would see it. The making of a mixed tape for ones personal use is completely proper and harms no one. The taping of a TV show for ones personal use is a proper use of a VCR. I have many tapes, and now CD's of music that I have paid for, and made a copy for my personal use. But you could ask my friends, the latest being a local pub owner, who asked me to burn him a copy of on of my Black Family CD's. I love this guy, and he employs my band. But I turned him down. I loaned him mine, and ordered him one of his own. My guess is he will pay me for it. It is the giving away that violates the boundary. In Napsters case, it is the giving away to the whole world. Fundamentally giving away one bandit tape to a friend, and making it available to the entire world on the Internet may be the same thing; but looked at as a matter of scale, and the difference is huge. I am not trying to tell you that I never made a tape and gave it away, because I have. Honestly, it was very few, and I came to a point in my life where I sat down, sought a definiton of intellectual property, opened my eyes to what I was doing to hardworking artists, and came to the conclusion that theft is just that.

Wil, I mean you no personal insult. But you, like others here, seek to mitigate your guilt because it has been convenient and you like being able to do it. You like getting something for nothing. I like that too. Do I believe that these technologies will change the way we do business? Yes I do. Am I happy about that? Absolutely. I believe that ultimately the artist can use these to control their works, and keep a larger portion of the fruits of their labor. Then what is my bitch? Because I hear people that I otherwise respect, and young friends that I think very highly of like Matt R., refusing to acknowledge the basic truth that they are avoiding paying for something that they would otherwise have to purchase. I hear you using any argument, or mixing arguments like you did above, to try and justify that you are cheating several people/entities out of their just desserts. Do I really give a shit about BMG getting theirs? Nah, not in a personal way. But I have seen too many times what happens when otherwise good people seek to hide behind the curtain and not see the elemental truth. It allows us to be coerced into doing injustice, not activally, but by virtue of not supporting justice. Pablo Freire once commented that washing one's hands of the conflict between the powerful and the powerless means that you have sided with the powerful, not remained neutral. In this case the software and the concept are the powerful, and the artist is powerless (as Dave's original post shows) to control how it is distributed. That is stealing. I am only asking that you look at motive in an honest way.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,Will
Date: 22 Dec 00 - 11:36 AM

Well, I think we can all agree to disagree on this issue.

Unfortunately there is only one way to ensure your music is never stolen, or distributed without your consent. Never release it in any form whatsoever.

I am a musician and I too have music out there on CD. The record labels have had way too much power over the years and it's time the artist took the controls again. The Internet may just be the way to do it. Unfortunately with the surge of hit and miss sites (MP3.com, AMP3.com, Riffage.com... mostly misses) we are in the early development stages of this new breed of record distribution. It seems to me that most of the best music to my ears is the stuff that never sees the major labels anyways, the stuff that is pure and bred entirely from the artists with no weight put into "current market trends" and "fashion". (Can anyone say "Boy Band" and "Bubblegum Pop"?)

Thing that makes me laugh is that CD/Tape/LP piracy has been going on for years and years, how many times have you made a mixed tape from some of your favorite albums?

Don't try to tell me it's different, it's no different than making a mixed tape for a friend.

So while you are complaining that Napster is stealing money right out of your pocket and ruining the artist... lets remember a couple things.

The next time you are sitting down to watch a taped Austin City Limits, or cruising down to your cabin with a "best of" home made tape... we all do it. Ethics are fickle at best. Let he who is without sin...

And... the real monsters are not you and I making these tapes/CD's/Mp3's... it's always been and always will be the record labels and their endless pack of cronies. We are just fuel for their money machines.

At this point I would like to crawl down from my soapbox and just wish a merry Christmas to all who believe in the annual "Kill a turkey for Jesus" day.

Have a safe holiday,

Will


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: AKS
Date: 22 Dec 00 - 04:33 AM

"Shoplifting is a great form of goods sharing, excellent for the consumer and added exposure for producer, it's all a matter of perspective I suppose."

Yet I believe, it is still globally considered as a crime of some degree, isn't it?! What makes it so hard to see the similarity of the issues?

Beats me!

However, Merry Christmas, everyone!

AKS, Joensuu, Finland


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Margo
Date: 21 Dec 00 - 07:14 PM

Yes Jed, it was at a songwriting workshop. Silly me to think it all original...


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,Will
Date: 21 Dec 00 - 02:25 PM

Personally... I use Napster much like i'd use the radio, only I get to decide what is good music and what isn't.

Living in rural Alberta (Canada) a blues lover just doesn't get the exposure to it with the radio here. Unless you consider blues to consist of 60's-70's classic rock... in which case we have a TON.

I probably never would have heard of Blind Boy Fuller, John Hurt, Willie McTell, Blind Blake, Charley Patton..etc... But by finding people on napster who had the same musical likes as myself, I have been exposed to these artists and many others I may never have otherwise heard.

The other pro of napster is that after checking most of the CD shops in the area, not many will carry any remasters of said bluesmen. So getting them to import the disk is horribly expensive (sometimes upwards of $30) and it's always a bit scary buying 2-3 of those disks not knowing what to expect, and knowing full well that if I take them in to a used shop i'll get 5% back of what I paid (if i'm lucky). This way, I can listen to a couple of the songs, see if this is what I am after and then go out and spend my money without hesitation.

Napster is a great form of music sharing, excellent for the consumer and added exposure for artists, it's all a matter of perspective I suppose.

Great site!

Will


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 21 Dec 00 - 02:05 PM

"The copyright law, like the patent statutes, makes reward to the owner a secondary consideration." U.S. v. Paramount Pictures 334 U.S. 131 (1948).

What part of "secondary consideration" don't you understand ?

The theory is that copyright law is supposed to serve the public first, the author second, and others incidentally third. Copyright has never been intended to give the author a control-freak's bludgeon. Formerly U.S. copyright only covered the sheet music as published. There was no performance right and no mechanical right. Later the public generously added these privileges to the rightsholder's bundle. But copyright still didn't cover recordings themselves, only the music on them. Still later the public generously expanded copyright to cover recordings themselves as well as the music on them. In theory these acts of generosity contained a measure of self-interest: the public gave up a little of its freedom in the short run in order to gain in the long run. In theory these expansions of copyright law were pragmatic policy choices made for the single purpose of promoting "progress of science and useful arts"--that is, of enlarging the public domain. Note that questions of "property" don't arise except where the law adopts a property model--which in the case of copyright it does only partially and is not required to do at all. Even when the copyright law adopts a property-like operation, "property" is simply a descriptive term for how the law works, not a prescriptive term carrying moral weight.

In practice, of course, copyright serves the big media conglomerates first, some authors next, and the public last. The attempt to suppress Napster itself (as distinguished from attempts to stop individuals from unauthorized uplinking) reflects these big-business priorities, as Professor James Boyle points out in this article:

"The real question...is not whether most of the copying on Napster or Gnutella is legal. (It is not). Nor is it whether the users of Napster or Gnutella can cast themselves as the heroes of new musical and artistic utopia. (First, they will have to stop ogling Ms Spears). The question is what all this means for the future of the music industry...

In fact, the biggest threat to the cultural potential of the internet is not digital piracy but the continuing attempt by the music industry to change technical standards and legal rules so as to build its current business plan into the law and the technology of the medium itself."

Because the copyright law has become so much a tool of big business, I consider widespread evasion inevitable, though not commendable. It has been said, "if you want the law to be respected, make the law respectable." If we want our complaints about the Napsterization of our work to carry weight, we need to recognize that the copyright law has become unbalanced and, at the same time as we voice our gripes about Napster, to call for the imbalance to be righted in the public's favor.

Is Napster guilty of some form of contributory infringement ? I don't see we can ban Napster (which is first of all a search engine) unless we are willing to ban all search engines.

One proposal for dealing with unlicensed uplinking is to pursue the individuals who practise it, as described here. Another possibility is to develop some form of special file-sharing license. This idea runs into the privacy questions, as well as the question of how to distinguished unathorized files of copyrighted material from all others. Some sort of (publicly known) sampling technique might be able to establish, without excessive snooping, that a certain service indexed unauthorized files at a rate far above some threshold, and this might trigger licensing liability. Or this approach might still cause problems for search engines like Google. In any case, the question should be resolved by pragmatic policy trade-offs, and the fundamental principles that guide these trade-offs should put our freedom and privacy ahead of allowing writers and performers to squeeze every possible penny of monopoly rent from their work.

T.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: wildlone
Date: 21 Dec 00 - 01:13 PM

As I see it [correct me if I am wrong] the napster program allows users to search for a given song,artist or album find who has it and allows you to download it from the nearest source.
Mp3 files on a computer using napster are visable to others using the program.
At this time there must be 1000s of computers using napster so the only way of stoping it is to go through the ISP's, I know that AOL states that if you use these types of program they can withdraw your service.
dave, who continues to buy his music.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,Russ
Date: 21 Dec 00 - 11:42 AM

Disclaimer - I am not a professional musician. My one musical goal is to be good enough to play for free. I do not steal music in any way, shape, or form. If I like your music I will go out of my way to pay you for it. This has nothing to do with virtue. The old time music I love is extremely non-mainstream. I want to encourage the people who do it to continue doing so. Brittany won't miss the $15 I did NOT spend on her last CD, but Bruce Greene sure appreciated that fact that I bought a copy of everything he had.

I sympathize with everyone who has been victimized by Napster and its clones.

I am happy to grant Big Mick his point: "Napster and other software like it, is designed for .... theft."

Having said that....

Now what? (This is not a rhetorical question.)

The usual responses are Technology and Litigation.

Technology - Big Mick suggests that we "Find the way to incorporate within this technology a per cut fee" and Gervase mentions the Secure Digital Music Initiative. I've run across this idea in other contexts. If technology is the problem, cure it with more technology. As a computer professional I personally don't have much hope in that direction. First, nobody wins here but the technology purveyors. (You are not happy with Windows 95, buy Windows 98. Got problems with Windows 98? We have Windows ME on sale today. Etc.) Also, technology is a target currently moving at faster than light speeds. Suppose we make it impossible to digitally duplicate MP3 files. No problem. By the time that is accomplished nobody but historians will remember much less use that format.

Litigation - Big Mick mentions "Massive litigation." Admittedly it is a pretty popular approach to contemporary problems (everything from self destructing tires to faulty elections). As an ordinary person it is not clear to me that anyone wins except the lawyers. I know a lawyer who is currently making obscene amounts of money in asbestos damage litigation. Even though he is quite good and usually wins, his clients are not doing nearly as well.

For better or worse, Napster and its ilk are a symptom of a fundamental change. I have to agree with those who say that the toothpaste is now out of the tube and there's no getting it back in. What I haven't seen are imaginative workable suggestions about dealing with such a fundamental change. Honest, accurate, and passionate, but not adequate.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Grab
Date: 21 Dec 00 - 11:35 AM

Matt's got a point on the "abandon-ware" front. If the musician's publishing company won't sell their music, then "samisdat" methods like Napster are the only way the music's going to stay alive. But this is not the case for Dave, who's had his stuff broadcast without his approval, and it may be damaging what return he gets on his recordings.

Grab.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Matt_R
Date: 21 Dec 00 - 10:48 AM

But Mick...this is not as though I'm going to Napster to download some album that came out last week. I there's something I CAN get, I'll get it. But I'm talking RARE stuff here. Oasis's MTV Unplugged album is bootleg...you either get it off Napster, or you get a bootleg off someone over the net. If noone thought the album was worth releasing and making money off of, why should **I** be expected to pay for it...which I can't because it was never made!!! And WHERE exactly am I supposed to get these other rare albums? Fly to England and hang around some rare records shop just so I can pay a measly $8 (pounds equivalent) for a old LP from a band that's been defunct for 30 years...and wasn't much popular at all? I can certainly understand paying for stuff..but jeez..how far can it go? Reminds me of when I used to play my classical guitar recitals. I was to pay 5 cents so I could play a prelude & waltz by a guitarist/composer who died 400 years ago. Sometimes I think it's really ridiculous.

I know your into the union stuff, Mick, and every get's their fair share stuff....but maybe you'd like to help me find this stuff....then I'll buy it.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: JedMarum
Date: 21 Dec 00 - 08:33 AM

Margo - I think your comments about Bill Staines advice presume that the song is yet unpublished. Once your song has been published, any artist can record it without paying you anything beyond the mechanical license fee (less then 8 cents/copy). The rules about what constitutes 'publication' are a bit vague, it seems to me, but the copyright laws consider any distribution of the song in excess of 2000 copies to be a publishing act.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Big Mick
Date: 21 Dec 00 - 06:38 AM

You know I love ya, Matt, but you and friend Knicke are just plain wrong. Don't give me that poor college kid crap. A lot of us have been poor college kids. I never had my own room, someone feeding me, a room to come home to that I didn't have to pay for so that all I had to do was complain about how hard I study. And even if all that were not the case, how does that make it OK to take someone else's work for nothing? And Knicke, if you are in such a wasteland, what would be the problem with using the same computer you currently use to rip off poor artists who are just trying to make a living, to visit websites and purchase that same music? No matter how many ways you try to make it sound OK, this all still comes down to using a tool you have (the computer) to avoid having to pay for something that you want. The thing you all are trying to avoid having in the discussion is who owns the music. You want to say that because one owns the CD, that they can give its contents to whom they choose. I say, and it appears the law says, that in order to do so you must pay the owner of the intellectual property. It is no different than giving a copy of a computer program away. I have never accepted this offer either. Is it because I don't think that Microsoft an stand the hit? Nope, it is because of the principle of the thing. That is something you all should ponder a bit. You know what you are doing is wrong. You prefer to dodge it by talking all around the edges. Stealing is stealing and that is what you do when you do this.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Knicke
Date: 21 Dec 00 - 01:35 AM

Hi. As a poor college student without a car living in a woefully dry area as far as music is concerned, I'd like to put in a plug for Napster. Sometimes it's awful hard to stay up to date with what's good and what's out there...especially when your only retail music source is the mega-Nazi chain Borders :(. You would not BELIEVE how hard it is to track down good music sometimes! Anyhow, I thought I'd let you nay-sayers know that I've never found anything new on Napster that was GOOD that I didn't eventually purchase. I think of it as an expanded listening room. I also think it has potential to do WONDERS for small-time traditional music! Since anybody can get their stuff on it, it's possible to bypass some of that commercial crap...all the people that get listened to because they've got the right agent or the right connections or just a really good publicist...and get the tunes to the people! If you're worth supporting, if you're really good, people WILL pay $$$! In my experience, anyhow. On another note: maybe all disgruntled musicians should unite and make a return to vinyl, eh? I always liked the feel (and smell, come to think of it) of records better.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Matt_R
Date: 20 Dec 00 - 10:40 PM

I've found all kinds of great stuff on Napster...ELO's first album (VERY hard to find)...Oasis's classic unreleased MTV Unplugged album (all acoustic..arguably their greatest work)...rare songs by The Move that are not on album anymore...and all have EXCELLENT quality! And I have a 56k...takes about 15 minutes to download a song...but it's WORTH it!


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GutBucketeer
Date: 20 Dec 00 - 09:58 PM

I have avoided Napster until now just on principle. Last night, however, based upon some of the discussion of this thread I decided to give it a whirl.

What a pain in the butt over a 56k modem! I did not download any Mudcat Music, but did look for some old time and other songs that I am trying to learn. Most were not on Napster. The test songs I did download were also of very poor quality.

As an alternative I do use MP3.com a lot. I have bought several "DAM CD's" through them and really use the service to discover new artists that I may be interested in. The way MP3 is organized seems to be a very viable alternative to distribute and sell online music. My only complaint is many of the songs on MP3 are single songs and the artist does not have a complete CD for sale. NOW if MP3.com would start to sell custom CDs where you could select the songs up to a specified time limit and get audio tracks provided. That would be really neat.

So I will leave Napster to the College kids. also, I can play my regular CDs away from the computer. I am married with kids and buying a $250 MP3 personal player is way down on my priority list. My disposable income for that type of thing went poof when Matt was born!

JAB


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Matt_R
Date: 20 Dec 00 - 07:02 PM

Money!
It's a gas
Grab that cash with both hands
And make a stash

Money!
Get back!
I'm alright, Jack
Keep your hands off my stack!


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Margo
Date: 20 Dec 00 - 06:27 PM

Bert's idea isn't bad at all! I think you ought to do the publishing company thing I described above because then you've got complete ownership of your music. Anyone else have any ideas about that? Margo


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Bert
Date: 20 Dec 00 - 06:18 PM

I would still be inclined to send them a bill. Saying perhaps...

Our charge for making our music available on your website is $100 a month (or whatever you deem fit).
Payment is due at the beginning of each month. Your payment for December is due immediately.

Then when they don't reply or don't pay, take them (or threaten to take them ) to small claims court IN YOUR TOWN. They will either then have to send a lawyer to your town or lose the case by default.

My guess is that then they would remove your music quickly.

I wouldn't expect to gain any money from this course of action, just have fun imagining the looks on their faces. Especially if both you and Jed do the same thing at the same time. It should scare the pants off them to receive the same letter from California AND from Texas at the same time. They'd think that you have a big national organization behind you.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Dave Swan
Date: 20 Dec 00 - 05:41 PM

Yes, Margo, the whole double album.

Thanks to everybody who got outraged with me and said the things I really wanted to say, but didn't. Trying to be a good sport and all that.

Of course Mick and catspaw said it better and were funnier. And no, 'spaw, no reacharound.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Margo
Date: 20 Dec 00 - 01:35 PM

I know a guy who says his CD got lots of sales from having his music downloadable for free. But it was just certain songs, it wasn't the whole CD. He was very happy to have his music downloadable online because of that. But I think the place that did it asked him first.

Dave, are you saying that the whole CD is available for download? I wouldn't be happy about that.

Yes, Skeptic, there is a way to deliver music from the artist to the fan without these inordinate middleman expenses. Start your own publishing company, and give ownership of your songs to the publishing company. Then you have control of the Publishing part of the royalties.

I learned this in a songwriting class given by Bill Staines. He said that if you've submitted your songs to the copywright office at the Library of Congress (USA) then you need to resubmit the song to give the ownership to your publishing company. Then the publishing royalty can be used by yourself as a bargaining chip when selling to larger entities. You can give up as much or as little as you want.

Margo


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,Lindsay
Date: 20 Dec 00 - 01:29 PM

While only a music lover (I'm lucky to play hooky), I sympathize with the plight of musicians. I buy my music and don't make copies except for personal use (to preserve the original). But, seriously, what can you expect in a world where people trash the environment and the phrase "common courtesy" has become an oxymoron?

Lindsay


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Dave Wynn
Date: 19 Dec 00 - 06:15 PM

I see that the CD cost's are shown in $...Try buying one in the U.K. and find that it the same integer but in £....this makes lots of CD's overpriced and we in the U.K. suffer more than most. Not commenting on napster coz my master says I darn't...

Tosp.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Matt_R
Date: 19 Dec 00 - 06:01 PM

Yeah, well, I send out tapes of my music for free, and I feel really guilty charging people for it. Why should my fun be worth someone else's money? My fun should equal their fun. They can Nap my Ster anytime.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,skeptic
Date: 19 Dec 00 - 05:54 PM

When a fan buys a CD, the publisher gets more than the lion's share of what the fan pays. I've been led to believe that the artist gets next to nothing. If we could devise some way to deliver music from the artist to the fan without these inordinate middleman expenses, the artists and the fans would be immensely better served. I'm not saying that Napster is the way, but I don't believe a word of the publishers' case against them. As I see it, the publishers are ripping off the artists too.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Grab
Date: 19 Dec 00 - 11:30 AM

Napster has been good for the music business insofar as it's shown the ASCAP companies that online music is the future. Without Napster, we'd likely not have any online music sites at all.

But you're right, it's no good for artists. The future is more likely to be stuff like EMusic - you either pay some fairly average amount and get unlimited access to download what you want, or you pay per song; and the whole thing is legit. Even Napster is talking about having a pay-version to go legit. The trouble is that EMusic is fairly good quality but there's not much range of artists, whereas Napster already has a good range of artists but many songs are recorded at very low quality to keep the download size down.

Grab.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,Big Mick
Date: 19 Dec 00 - 11:26 AM

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.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Gervase
Date: 19 Dec 00 - 11:22 AM

The problem with asking Napster to pull your stuff is that they don't actually have it - it's on thousands of people's hard drives around the globe - hence the legal nightmares involved in trying to stop the ripping off of intellecutal propertyrights.
I've just logged on to the Napster query server to see that there are 1241567 files currently available on 7679 different machines. That's why it's such a tough nut to crack, and why the Secure Digital Music Initiative needs to be lobbied by performers as well as record labels and distributors.
Sure, Napster's a great idea, if you feel like putting your work out there for the world to have, free of charge. But if you feel that way, why not use mp3.com instead?
As Big Mick, Alice and others have said, if you download a commercially recorded rip from Napster you are stealing from the artist/s who made that recording.
And that's why the company I'm involved with has spent the best part of £3 million on software licensing alone to come up with a secure means of digital distribution which won't result in the copyright holders (be they musicians, games designers, photographers etc) being robbed. I know I've got a vested interest, but so should anyone who cares about their material being stolen.
I know it's tempting, particularly on a shoestring budget, to pull a bootleg file from Napster - but spend more than 10 minutes looking at the ethics and you'll realise that Napster sucks, whatever the weasel words about the BMG tie-in.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Lepus Rex
Date: 19 Dec 00 - 10:39 AM

Hehe, I'm not touching this topic today, but just wanted to say: Jimmy, the reason your mp3s sound like shit is because you're probably getting the smallest, most compressed files you can find. Almost every one I've talked to that said mp3 sound quality is poor made that mistake. :)

---Lepus Rex


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 19 Dec 00 - 10:18 AM

Why don't you recording artists just try sending a letter to the folks in charge at Napster and tell them that you don't want your stuff made available at their site? Send the letter Return Receipt Requested. (The chipmunks who work at places like that take such letters more seriously.)

Perhaps they will pull your stuff on the grounds that it isn't worth the hassle.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: John P
Date: 19 Dec 00 - 05:07 AM

Jimmy,
CDs don't cost $15. They cost $9. That's how much retail stores pay for them, and retail stores are an important part of the equation of making CDs pay for themselves. If the artist sells them for a lot less than the retail store is going to sell them for, the retail store doesn't buy them from the artist. The reason for the mark-up is that the retail store has to provide a place and a staff -- in short, they have to service the sale. When I sell a CD at my show, I am the one who has to service the sale. I have to set up the gig, practice the music, and spend my break talking to potential customers. In the folk music world, for small fry like me and most of the rest of us, most gigs do not pay enough to make them worth it. Certainly not enough to live on. Without the CD sales, there is not enough money to make me want to leave the house (yes, I play music becuase I love it, but I can play music at home, too).

Have you made a CD lately? I urge you to call around to some studios and get some prices on recording time. Yes, I know there are home studios available that are digital and very good. If you can't tell the difference between the sound of a CD recorded in someone's living room and one recorded in good studio, I can. I have talked to lots of people who have spent more than $10,000 recording their CDs. That's more than I would ever spend, but $2000 - $5000 is an easy amount to drop, before duplication costs. Which, by the time you hire an artist, print the booklet, pay royalties, and pay mastering costs, can be another $3 - $4 per CD. What's the point of doing all this if I have to wait a year or more before I sell enough to make a profit?

I would love to sell all my stuff via the web, but the fact is that most people only buy CDs when they see us play live. In order to attract customers at live shows, I need all the packaging. In order to feel good about myself at the end of the day, I need the highest quality sound I can get.

People who pirate CDs are nothing but thieves. They are getting the benefits of my work without paying me for it. I don't care if I would never have gotten that money anyway . That's irrelevant. I did the work. They get the product. I don't get paid. Somehow I don't see them going to work without getting paid.

As for Mudcat, my opinion is that Mudcat shouldn't publish copyrighted material without the consent of the copyright holder.

John


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Seamus Kennedy
Date: 19 Dec 00 - 04:10 AM

Jimmy, good points. But the $15 I'm charging for my CDs now, and have been since I started putting my music out on CD, has been devalued over the years, and is now probably worth the $10 you are espousing.
Seamus


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,Jimmy
Date: 19 Dec 00 - 02:21 AM

Mick, you read me wrong. I am a folk music presenter who receives many CDs of folk performers. I stand by my opinion that we are asking too much at $15 for a CD. I disagree with you that there is any EASY way of getting any of these sites to pay any royalties, especially to folk performers. We have to work with the current situation. I certainly do not denegrate the artists you mention, but are they charging $10 for a CD? There are still a lot of short CDs by national folk performers and there is still a lot of 'B' material. I refuse to name names but I've purchased CDs that meet that criteria. If there are CDs on Napster (actually there are very few in the FOLK genre) I would appreciate the ability to listen to what I am about to buy before I fork over my money. Would you accept the word of a car salesman without driving the car? Are there better ways for folk artists to get their music heard? I would suggest that Napster may be ripping off the Rock world but true folkies need better quality sound and are more likely to use it (just like listening to a folk radio show) as a way to finding new music so they can buy a CD. An alternative would be the old radio adage "If you play it, say it!" and make Mapster provide a link to a site where the CD may be purchased.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Big Mick
Date: 19 Dec 00 - 01:28 AM

As I said on this thread and on others, Jimmy, there is an easier solution. Find the way to incorporate within this technology a per cut fee. This way the artist could control and sell their work directly. But for it to work, all the sites would have to agree. I don't know the way to accomplish this without massive litigation. Even if this were possible, I am afraid that it would have a tragic effect on labels like Folk Legacy.

And by the way............I don't mean to offend with this, honest..............you showed your credentials don't lie in the folk area. Because Folkies already are providing much more than what you suggest. Listen to either of Rick Fieldings CD's. Hell, the first one probably didn't leave a nickels worth of blank space on the CD. Go to Folk Legacy and look at any of their stuff. Not only will you get a ton of music, but you will get some of the most amazing liner notes ever. Included in their catalogue is Bok, Muir and Trickett (the group as well as individual recordings). These folks cram a ton of music into one CD. Get a copy of Dan Milners CD while you are there. Once again, you will get a ton of music, and every song an A song. Camsco has a ton of some of the hardest to find stuff anywhere. Folkies almost always have stuffed much more music than other genre's onto their recordings. It is usually when some label buys a catalogue for commercial purposes that they start to get stingy with the music. And to bring it back around to the topic, I fear that the effect of Napster-like software on these labels could be tragic. And if you think that they are making a ton of money on these $15.00 CD's, you just ain't done the cypherin', son.

All the best,

Big Mick


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,Jimmy
Date: 19 Dec 00 - 01:08 AM

I've listened to these MP3 downloads and the sound quality is crap. Although it is only about as bad as a cassette recording off a 33.3 rpm LP record. (Vinyl) I think that one of the problems that has not been dealt with is the price of a CD. When they first came on the market, CDs were very expensive to create and therefore $15 was a reasonable price to pay. Now, CDs are cheaper to produce than cassettes, but the price has not come down. I still see Folk Festival prices at $10/cassette and $15/CD. There is evidence of profiteering even in the Folk Music World. It probably makes sense to the young folks on the Internet to download a few tracks for free rather than pay $15 for a CD that has one or two good tracks on it. I remember the days when an album had one or two good songs and ten 'B' sides.(e.g. Lennon/Ono "Double Fantasy")for a total of about 30 minutes. Why don't folk musicians make a statement that takes advantage of CD technology which reflects the relative cost of modern production by providing at least 60 minutes of 'A' material and charge $10 for a CD? Aren't we supposed to be the Avant-garde?


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: JedMarum
Date: 18 Dec 00 - 07:30 PM

Truth is, Mick/Spaw; it is theft. I wouldn't participate in Napster, and don't. I didn't want my CD out there, but for me it has little impact - that is the only reason I say I don't know what to think. I don;t think there's much of a publicity factor for me either (Who'll know to look for it?). I do believe it is theft of an artist's material. I am trying to sell CDs, and here is someone giving them away without my permission! I can understand where this could be a very serious problem - it probably isn't for me (I don't attract a large worldwide audience who will be tempted to get MP3s of my music instead of buying my CD). I guess what I'm saying is, I think it's wrong, but I'm not up in arms about it, since it hurts me little. I do believe there are others who can be hurt by it, and I would be more concerned about the damage it may do to their income.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Alice
Date: 18 Dec 00 - 07:27 PM

"Exposure" is an excuse used for not paying artists and musicians. You can't pay the mortgage, the phone company, the grocery store, etc. with "exposure". What artists and photographers are also dealing with is the same problem musicians are dealing with - more people wanting their creative work given away for free. I can choose to give my work to a charitable cause if I want, but as long as I have to pay bills with my work, I need to get paid most of the time. When an artist gives their work away or discounts its value, they just get the reputation of being the place you can get cheap or free art. That kind of exposure no working artist needs. It does not build up your reputation, it tears it down.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,Big Mick
Date: 18 Dec 00 - 07:04 PM

Ed, I respect your opinion...............until the last two lines. That sounded a little too preachy to me...makes want to say, "Gee Dad, I never thought of it that way". So instead I will just repeat from above. Bite me. I respect that someone might want to judge before they buy. Sound clips in the form of downloadable files work fine for that. But there is a reason why that is just one or two songs and just parts of them, at that. BECAUSE THE ARTIST DOESN'T WANT TO GET RIPPED OFF!!!!!! I am sure you are honorable Zeb/Ed, and would NEVER download something for free, eh? You must be hell on wheels with shareware. Oh, gosh, that's right............most shareware now has a time limit and then it expires and can't be renewed.........wonder why? Did you read Stephen King's online book? You really ought..........oh...........shit........he quit publishing it because folks weren't honoring the "honor" system"...........damn, too bad cause, hey, problably would have made him more popular.............What's the point.........just this. Intellectual property is property. I have a right to be compensated. It is no different than a CD that I sell at my shows. Your arguments don't hold water.

Seamus, teach your son. I am sure you do. True that tapes can be copied, but the similarity ends there. In order to copy tapes, one must be in the proximity of a "master". But with Napster, One must simply go up on the web and voila. The problem before was localized. Imagine yourself a college student watching a band perform, who decided that they wanted the music and knew it was available for free on the web. You going to part with the bucks?

I repeat..........All attempts to justify this are so you can rationalize stealing the fruits of someone elses labor. For most of my life I have had to do battle with big business. Here, I am doing it again. But it seems they have allies this time. Average folks who want to cut the artists out. Ain't sitting by for this, folks. It is wrong.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Zebedee
Date: 18 Dec 00 - 06:57 PM

I might add that Mudcat probably adversely affects the profits of sheet music publishers, but how many of us consider that an issue when we post some chords, or think that Mudcat is therefore a bad thing?

Ed


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: catspaw49
Date: 18 Dec 00 - 06:55 PM

And it is that lack of choice Seamus!!

Seamus sent me his albums and so has Jed and Dave and gawd knows I have appreciared the hell out of them! But, they all did it of their choice and free will. Napster certainly has NO choice involved for the artist.

Somehow I can't see General Motors having someone give replicas of their cars away.................

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Seamus Kennedy
Date: 18 Dec 00 - 06:48 PM

My son at college informed me that all 9 of my CDs are on Napster; I really don't know what to think. On the one hand, it's publicity, and on the other hand, people can get my stuff for free, while folks who come to my shows or who order my product online have to pay for it. He says Napster is not to blame. It's just the same as someone making a tape of my CDs for a friend. Well that's wrong, too, but in this case, it's available to thousands of friends, who could be potential purchasers. Shit, bugger, piss! Seamus


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Zebedee
Date: 18 Dec 00 - 06:42 PM

My personal view is that it's good publicity. I've bought a number of CDs as a result of hearing a track on Napster.

I've also decided against buying stuff after using napster to 'audition' it.

I'm not really sure why you feel discomfort at other people deciding what to with your music. Once you publish it, anyone can do what they wish. Radio has been doing that for 50 years, tapes and photocopying and other technologies more recently. Whatever people say, napster isn't qualitatively that different.

Be pleased that people like your music enough to want to share it. If it's good, you won't lose out.

Ed


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: catspaw49
Date: 18 Dec 00 - 06:39 PM

I have never tried Napster and I won't. It continues to strike me as a crock of shit. Sorry guys.....

So El Swanno......Didn't you even get a "reach around?"......geez.......bummer.................

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: Sorcha
Date: 18 Dec 00 - 05:48 PM

Yea, I'm with the Mick on this one. Maybe you could consider it a "compliment" that someone liked it well enough to up load it? Rude bastards, tho.


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: GUEST,Big Mick
Date: 18 Dec 00 - 05:36 PM

Which is exactly what my point was in the other thread. All of you that continue to try and defend this shit can bite me. Sorry for being crass, but I am tired of folks trying to defend this practice as though somehow it is good for the artist. The users defend it by saying it exposes your music to more people. Well, the publishing houses, according to the post above, bought into that argument as it fits the artist, but not themselves. When the deal was cut the only people being compensated was them. Until the technology exists to compensate the artists directly for each download, Napster and other software like it, is designed for one thing. And that is so those that want something for nothing can have it. It is nothing less than theft. You can couch it in whatever terms you want, it still comes down to cheating the person(s) that created it.

Dave, my dear friend, sorry to hear about this. I think it sucks. By the way, the cat has had her suitcases packed and checks the mail everyday for a plane ticket. It is getting so I don't know what else to tell her. I am out of excuses for you. Soon she will think you don't care.............LOL.

All the best,

Mick


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Subject: RE: Ouch, we've been Napstered
From: SeanM
Date: 18 Dec 00 - 04:50 PM

Well, Dave, if it's any consolation I wasn't aware that the CD was even available... hoepfully after christmas, when I have money, I'll be able to order one. Hey, that way you can say that you (indirectly) made money off of Napster!

Jed, you may be protected through ASCAP, but don't expect to see anything. Even with the BMG agreement, the way it looks is that pretty much every single penny generated through Napster will go directly to the publishers, without provision for the artists. The argument I've heard from this is (amusingly enough) a retooled pro-Napster argument: "The artists will benefit from the exposure, and the nominal fees we will collect will cover the expenses from our end"

M


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