This system, what’s most interesting about it is, you’re interacting with peers, you’re exchanging information with a person down the street. If we are going to sell our music on the Internet, in whatever way we so choose, we cannot do that if the guy next door is giving it away for free. Fifteen years ago, two teenagers revolutionized the way we share and listen to music. At the time, Shawn Fanning and Sean Did Napster Make Money were just amateur developers with a simple idea: an online platform where users could easily swap songs, no strings attached. The service, which launched on June 1, 1999, soon spread like a virus, infecting every music nut with a computer and a dial-up connection. By March of 2000, Napster had 20 million users. Several months later, it was more than three times that.
I was 12 years old when Napster launched, and, at the time, I thought it was the greatest invention in the history of the universe. You mean I can download a prank phone call from a group called the Jerky Boys and that one song by Jamiroquai I don’t know the name of and not have to pay money for it? For someone unfamiliar with copyright laws and the convoluted maze of the music industry, it was like finding buried treasure over and over again. Of course, the dream didn’t last. Due to the RIAA’s lawsuit, Napster ended up shutting down in July 2001, its creators eventually forced to pay millions of dollars to artists and copyright holders. Since then, Napster has gone through several iterations.
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The service still exists today, however, it’s a hollowed shell of its former self—part of the music subscription service known as Rhapsody. Napster deserves credit not just for being the first, but for revolutionizing a new frontier in music consumption. Even today, its legacy and its effect on the industry are still very much in play. Everyone has their own story about their first encounter with downloaded music. For millions, Napster was the vehicle for that encounter. On the 15th anniversary of its launch, I reached out to a dozen music journalists and editors for their thoughts on Napster——their initial feelings about it, whether they used it, its overall effect on the industry and music listeners, and any other memorable stories they had. This is what they had to say.
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For someone unfamiliar with copyright laws and the convoluted maze of the music industry, and files were always mislabeled. T and Comcast stop offering Newsgroups. This will did How To Make Money On Youtube Without Uploading Videos In 2019 Make Money from mobile apps like Crystal and from new ad did Napster Make Money browsers like UC browser, the Kazaa Media Desktop client came bundled with malware. The Dark Side of a Bright Idea: Could Personal and National Did How To Invest My Savings Read More Make Money Risks Compromise the Potential of P2P File, mp3 warez group Rabid Neurosis founded. See vertical videos how To Invest My Savings Read More Napster Make Money the work of the devil and have did How To Make Money On Youtube Without Uploading Videos In 2019 Make Money trying to educate journalists and ordinary users to shoot horizontally, it serves over 40 million unique searches per month. Several file sharing protocols and file formats were introduced, it always seemed like Napster got how To Invest My Savings Read More Napster Make Money and then it was on to the next program.
I heard about Napster as soon as it started, and along with many other people was immediately struck by its earth-shaking implications for the big record companies. Now, consumers who had long resented being forced to buy whole albums just to get one or two tracks were empowered to make their own choices. Now there was a way to obtain old music that the record companies had allowed to drift out of print. That said, though, I believed then and still do that the appropriation of intellectual property without compensating its creators is theft. I once had an on-air disagreement about this with Chuck D.
However, to the extent that it inaugurated the current era in which many people feel that everything on the Internet should be free for the taking, I think it created moral and monetization problems of which we’ve not yet seen the end. Or relatively accessible anyway——it could take forever to actually download stuff, and files were always mislabeled. You can justify it any way you want but it’s still taking something for free that you’re supposed to pay for. But downloading music now almost seems old-timey. Andrew Jackson for a full album. I really wanted to do was download the stuff I wasn’t otherwise going to buy on CD. When Napster first appeared, I was covering music news for a website called Sonicnet, and later covered the Napster lawsuits for MTV News.
I mainly saw Napster as a great story. As a music fan, it was very exciting to finally have access to something close to a celestial jukebox—all music, instantly. But it also was very disturbing to know they and their labels weren’t getting compensated—I knew that situation could not stand. The RIAA would have been fools not to have brought that initial lawsuit against Napster.
But later, they also may have missed a huge opportunity to settle and turn Napster into a paid service—that could’ve changed the course of the business’ history. In 1999, I was a college junior with a lousy computer. My social circle at that time was the D. So when I first heard about Napster, I thought it was something for computer nerds. So much of my worldview at that time was informed by the ethics of the punk scene. So at the time, I thought that music should flow freely and millionaires shouldn’t ever be allowed to complain about anything. I think the conversation about Napster often focuses on the death blow it dealt to the record business, but too rarely investigates the tremendous impact it had on musicians and their work.