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Debate on Napster

The Napster software, which launched in 1999, allows people to share digital music files (MP3) between each other. This Internet program has sparked a historical debate aboutcopyright law and the Internet. Copyright owners strongly believe that sharing these filesvia Napster is stealing(TIME).Downloading music against the wishes of an artist or producer is breaking the law. Some believe that it is not stealing or illegal. They are just making a copy of someonessong. In the Constitution, Article 1, Section 8 it says promote the Progress of Scienceand useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Rightto their respective Writings and Discoveries.. (Constitution). This led to copyright law,which gives artists the exclusive rights to their music from the moment of its creation until,generally 70 years after the artist dies (Michigan Review). There may not be respect for thecopyright law, but it is still breaking the law. According to the Michigan Review, in areas around college campuses anduniversities, CD sales have dropped 4%. In 2000, retail CD sales at stores near colleges withhigh Napster use are actually below 1997 sales (Michigan Review). That is a huge reversalin an area that usually sees high demand for music. Also according to the Michigan Review,CD sales are up 16% across the nation. How can Napster be a bad thing if it is helping therecord industry? Maybe some people buy CDs based on what they hear on Napster, but formost college students Napster has the opposite effect. Colleges and universities have beenhotbeds for sharing of online music files by a variety of methods for many years. AllNapster and similar tools have done is make this sharing of files much easier (Newsweek). There are no in-betweens here. In all fairness to the artist, one should make a choice. They should buy it or delete it from their computer. Some people might not like a songwell enough to want to pay...

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