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Online Music Sharing

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Online Music Sharing

Will cds and cassettes soon become extinct like the 8 track and vinyl records? Well, that very well may become the case due to online music sharing. Music sharing has become the hottest, most popular thing now-a-days for teens and college students across the nation. This innovative idea is now caught in between a war of advocates and anti-advocates, courts have now become involved, which side are you on?

I don't know about you but I'm all for the online music sharing. I'm for it simply because I am one who doesn't have a lot of time to go review and listen to cd's to hear their potential. I am a very busy person, and I am always on the run so I don't have the time to go to the record store and buy whole cd's or the singles which is one of the pros of online music sharing.

Online sharing is an excellent way to preview music before one would decide to buy it because if there aren't any songs that aren't liked by the listener then they would decide to buy the single and not waste money buying a whole album of an artist that they wouldn't like. But that factor is frowned upon by the music industry. Why? One may ask. Because of online music sharing services such as Napster.

Napster was started by accident by a college student trying to find a faster way to load and copy songs off of the internet. He some way found out how to load songs really fast. After finding out this information he put it on the internet so that other college students like himself who wanted to sample music could find it faster and easier just like he did.

The Napster website is simply a free way of obtaining the songs wanted and to make mixed cd's for themselves and others. There are other sites (i.e. Morpheus, Aimster, Audio Galaxy) that offer their free music and sites to listen to any song of their choice. "Currently the post-Napster tool of choice is Aimster. The name Aimster was cobbled from America Online Instant Messenger and Napster. Developed by John Deep of Troy, New York, Aimster software allows AIM users to offer other AIM users a way to locate and copy files on one another's computers. Unlike Napster, AIM users are on one another's buddy lists. The index of files exists on each AIM user's personal computer. When one AIM user wants to copy a file from a "buddy's" computer, the transfer takes place between the two machines. Aimster has a search function that prowls the directory of the buddies' computers. When it locates the desired file, the transfer takes place. The speed of the transfer depends on the bandwidth available to the machines. Otherwise, the request and transfer are almost instantaneous. Aimster uses ICQ, a popular messaging client, and AOL's Instant Messenger to detect buddies. In order to prevent an Aimster-type of search-and-retrieve function from working, changes in the architecture of these programs would have to occur or Aimster users would have to be denied access to these popular services." (Arnold 1). With all the controversy going on, popular music artists as well have stood up to voice their opinions and stand against Napster.

Online music sites have proven to be helpful to many and if they were so wrong then why are there so many available to the public and free of charge? Why are a large majority of people using it? "It's one of the gutsiest venture capital investments ever. Napster, the file-sharing software company at the center of one of the Net's biggest controversies, had no revenue but needed millions in private equity. Despite Napster's overnight rise to fame and its potential to revolutionize the distribution of music, many VCs felt they couldn't get comfortable backing the startup. Then Hummer Winblad stepped in. In May, the San Francisco-based firm led a $15 million round of funding--including $13 million of its own--and installed partner Hank Barry as Napster's acting CEO and John Hummer as a board director. Barry aims to turn Napster into a subscription service, eliminating the record companies' chief grievance with Napster: that its technology allows millions to share recorded music for free" (Park 1).

People like me aren't stealing the songs, we're simply getting the songs that we've always wanted from a 'friend.' Tell me, what's the difference



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