Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

99% Blockage Isn't Good Enough, Says Napster Judge

timothy posted more than 13 years ago | from the shut-down-kinkos-xerox-and-nikon-too dept.

Music 273

Masem writes: "Articles at CNET and CNN say that Judge Patel has ordered Napster to remain offline until they can offer 100% blockage of copyrighted songs by the plaintiff record companies. Napster officials said that they can guarentee 99% complience, but Patel says this is not good enough. Napster is arguing that this order violated the appeals court's ruling, and are appealling it."

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

people's unwillingness to face statistics (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#89004)

It seems to me that people in this country have a reluctance to face facts and numbers. We deal with statistics and decisions about worth each day, and it's just unrealistic to draw absolute prohibitions on things like this. There will *always* be someone out in the 9-sigma tail who can defeat your algorithms. But in so many debates, you encounter people who won't compromise over "even a single case" at the expense of everyone else. Let's face it -- these kinds of calculations are made every day by car, health, life insurance companies, large corporations, the government, and I'm sure they don't hold themselves to a 99.9% standard of success... And we don't see lawyers mounting nearly as costly a fight as the lousy record companies have over this. Get your priorities straight...

The New Napster (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#89005)

Fine!!! Deal with it. Napster and its networks are shutdown by the courts, but that certainly doesn't mean that new and better clients with peer-to-peer functionality are not available. Bear Share and AudioCity are OK, but do not nearly have as much of the wealth of files to search as Napster did. There is one though with around 200 TB of information!!! Go to The technology is such that neither search requests nor actual downloads pass through any central server. The network is multi-layered, so that more powerful computers get to be search hubs. I CAN'T STOP DOWNLOADING!!!!! Work productivity is coming back down!!!

Re:Down to 4-5 CDs/year (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#89006)

And I'll bet there's a lot of eclectic or classic jazz music that you would have never heard before if it weren't for Napster. That's how it was for me. Now I have to go back to listening only to the bands I know so I don't waste $15 on a CD that I'm not allowed to preview in mp3 format.

Stop 100% of guns from being used in crimes. (2)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#89008)

You can't do it without banning guns, which is unconstitutional. Is Napster a forum for free speech? If so, you can't stop 100% of piracy without banning cree speech.

"No one can gurantee the actions of another." - Spock

It remains to be seen that they DID violate... (2)

Svartalf (2997) | more than 13 years ago | (#89015)

The appeal is under way and the appeals court told Patel that she couldn't quite ask for what she was asking for- and this new twist may well be in violation of the higher court's order in that regard.

That would be about the only way I'd buy a CD... (3)

Svartalf (2997) | more than 13 years ago | (#89017)

Put the money in the artist's pockets- that is what I want to do. That, and pay a fair share for the production thereof. If I buy from local bands, etc. at their shows that's what transpires. If I buy from a record store, most of my money goes to people that had little to do with the music I'm buying. I don't like that.

Reasonableness? (4)

Svartalf (2997) | more than 13 years ago | (#89019)

The system has sufficient non-infringing uses, they guarantee 99% compliance (which is worlds better than everything else out there...) and Patel's still not satisfied.

Should we say that Patel's biased at this point and remand the situation to another Judge- she sure isn't acting with neutrality or anything like that.

In a different judicial order... (5)

Svartalf (2997) | more than 13 years ago | (#89020)

The Supreme Court ordered that /. posters stop posting until they verify all their facts instead of checking the at the door.

Patel is a SHE.

Isnt this just the deathknell for them? (3)

Bob McCown (8411) | more than 13 years ago | (#89031)

How can they assure 100% compliance? Someone, somewhere, will post a file that gets by the blocking software somehow....

If they want 100% ... (1)

ananke (8417) | more than 13 years ago | (#89032)

napster needs to tell this guy: we'll provide 100%, if your sperm can perform the same way ...

Napster? (2)

Pac (9516) | more than 13 years ago | (#89033)

Wasn't it last week that Napster was officially considered dead and, its "beyond-the-grave" loquacity notwithstanding, unworthy of further notice? Have the nice editor forgot?

The 2-5 Napster users remaining, if consulted, would probably answer that they continue using Napster because "it the greatest music trading service out there and hey, we work here".

The rest of us have already migrated to greener networks.

Insane... (5)

MAXOMENOS (9802) | more than 13 years ago | (#89035)

Apparently this judge doesn't understand the technology required to ensure compliance with the court order.

Checking that a music file (X) matches another music file (known copyrighted material Y) is a matter of doing a checksum, or otherwise scanning features of X and checking them against features of Y. If the files are exactly the same then you can do a CRC on each file, and if the checksums match, you have a 1-in-four-billion chance that the two files are *not* the same.

But the two files being exactly the same is one hell of an assumption. An intrepid music pirate could feed Y through some kind of distortion to produce Y', which would look different to a CRC. That means you have to look for features in the sound itself. Even with the algorithm produced by the genius 20-year-old, I am very doubtful that you'd have 0% false negative rate. There's always going to be something crawling through. That's the nature of pattern recognition.

I think the judge has made this court order impossible to comply with, barring one option: Napster closes down. That strikes me as more than adequate grounds for appeal.

Re:100%? (1)

Requiem (12551) | more than 13 years ago | (#89037)

And 100% is pratctically impossible anyways, because if just ONE song out of...say...5 billion gets through, its not 100% anymore.

It might be with floating point errors. ;)

Re:Evasion (1)

ethereal (13958) | more than 13 years ago | (#89042)

Apparently they're planning to take a fingerprint of the audio itself, rather than just going off of song titles. It's really some pretty neat technology if you read up on it - [] .

Re:Insane... (1)

ethereal (13958) | more than 13 years ago | (#89043)

It's a different genius 20-year-old who came up with the audio fingerprinting technology. You're correct that it's not Shawn Fanning.

Re:The next phase of the war should start soon. (3)

sith (15384) | more than 13 years ago | (#89044)

Interesting ... now that I think about it, I haven't purchased any CD's since napster stopped being useful either. Not because I was specifically protesting anything, but because I have all the CD's that I want right now, and without napster I have no way of finding new music that I might be interested in. Hmmm...

Re:Famous Attempts at 99% compliance (2)

ivan256 (17499) | more than 13 years ago | (#89046)

All circumstances you have mentioned in your post are 100% non-compilance with a law. They are not 99% compliant in any way. However, napster just has to have substantial non-infringing uses beyond it's infringing use to be in 100% compilance with the law. So if they manage to block 99% of the infringing use and the majority of the remaining use is non infringing, then they are compilant with the law. 100% compilant, not 99% compilant. The percentage of infringing use that they block does not magically translate into a percentage of compliance with the law as you suggest. This ruling seems to make new law, instead of enforcing the laws on the books.

They're getting what they want (1)

Funky Jester (24420) | more than 13 years ago | (#89059)

It's been fairly obvious from the beginning that the record labels don't give a rats ass about Napster. In fact, I'm sure they'll be far happier once they're gone, which is what they wanted in the first place.
IMHO, they've only dragged it out this long to keep their public image up--so they aren't perceived as Ogres.
("bah! I ought to club them and eat their bones")

Re:oh yea? really ? (1)

mistered (28404) | more than 13 years ago | (#89066)

That's really funny, since there's someone outside my appartment playing the trumpet right now and it sounds like they're playing it with their butt.

Re:Argh... (2)

tippergore (32520) | more than 13 years ago | (#89068)

Napster is totally done-for, and was even before this. They'll probably run out of money before they're able to appeal something like this.

The concept only worked with regard to trading illegal files, not legitimate ones.

Legitimate files can easily find a good space on a website, or several, why bother with peer to peer sharing? Last time I checked, there were multiple places to post unsigned artists' music on the internet...

Places that won't cut your download off in the middle because the person you were downloading from designed to go offline. Places that won't charge you money for the convenience of downloading freely-available music all while turning your computer into a fileserver for a large corporation's benefit....Why bother with the uncertaintly of file availablility if you're not trying to hide your actions?

There's just no reason.

Stick a fork in them, because they sure are done.

Re:100%? (2)

perkindiafrawl (33807) | more than 13 years ago | (#89070)

I am a proud DOE employee and have been [suffered] through the rigormoraul of saftey classes and policy. While the Lab here is very concerned with safety, I was surprised at how reasonable and pragmatic they treated the issue. That is, they conceeded that 100% safe is not attainable, but, let's do our best by learning safe practices.

So, even the gub-ment, in all its presumed beauracracy, can admit that a 100% guarantee is unattainable.

I can't believe anyone out there with a slight understanding of what these com-pu-tor things are could think that a 100% guarantee of non-copywritten songs is possible.

Opt-in (1)

mgoff (40215) | more than 13 years ago | (#89071)

Why not change the from a banned-song system to an authorized-song system? Much like authors submit their work to, Napster could allow authors to register their song along with an MD5 checksum. Not only would the checksum prevent copyrighted songs from masquerading as approved songs, but incomplete and corrupted downloads would be blocked from trading. A simple moderation/reporting/blocking system could be assembled to block songs posted as original work which were actually copyrighted-- enough reports, or a report from a "trusted" user, and the song would be removed from the authorized list.

Objective achieved (3)

darkonc (47285) | more than 13 years ago | (#89074)

Well, they're getting 100% blockage now -- Of course they're also blocking 100% of everything else. I would have been very disappointed if they didn't appeal this obscene ruling.

As far as I remember it, the copyright laws require the copyright holders to inform the ISP of the names (fingerprints) of the offending files. This ruling seem to be putting the onus on Napster to figure out what files are being traded....

I think that I can understand blocking 100% of files explicitly noted, but predicting all permutations is asking for the eye of the needle. If the RIAA were asked to provide this information, without impinging too much on non-copyright material, they'd just throw up their hands and walk away.

The judge *IS* right (3)

chrysalis (50680) | more than 13 years ago | (#89076)

Oficially, Napster is not supposed to be a system to share copyrighted songs. It's supposed to be a way for musicians to share their music. Free music.
And that idea is really great. It'd have been wonderful for music makers if the rules had been respected.
But it hasn't been the case. Napster is a tool for piracy. Only copyrighted materials here. And not only music from majors full of $$$, there's also a lot of songs from little labels as well. Without their agreement. That's bad.
People are crying because Napster is dying. But they don't even realize that they really *stole* commercial songs. This is shameful piracy. Blaming the judge or blaming Napster that only filters 99% is stupid. Blame yourself. Blame stupid users that violated the rules and turned something legal into a 100% illegal stuff.
Internet is nice to share opinions, to ask help, to work on free software and to share *free* stuff. Using it as a convenient way to share warez/commercial movies/commercial songs is a shame. People doing that should better shup up than yell "oh shit, someone wants to stop us from stealing commercial stuff. Fuck him, we will have to install another software to do the same thing, it will take 5 minutes of our precious time".

-- Pure FTP server [] - Upgrade your FTP server to something simple and secure.

Re:in that case.... (5)

Coward, Anonymous (55185) | more than 13 years ago | (#89077)

in that case, i think a global condom and birth control pill recall is in order.

Impossible. Recalled products have to be mailed back and no parcel delivery service can guarantee 100% delivery.

in that case.... (3)

thnmnt (62145) | more than 13 years ago | (#89081)

in that case, i think a global condom and birth control pill recall is in order.

unless of course the judge allows napster to use the rhythm method.

Obligatory "Napster is dying" post (2)

bconway (63464) | more than 13 years ago | (#89082)

I think by now this is a pretty moot point, few people if anyone is still using their service, with multiple OpenNap networks (go OggVorbis!) holding their own, along with all the other P2P clients out there. It's a shame MusicCity moved away from OpenNap onto their own client, their server farm was awesome (though I'd love to see a Morpheus client for Linux, they have some really neat stuff going on there).

who? (2)

TMB (70166) | more than 13 years ago | (#89084)

Judge Patel appears to lack the technicall savvy of say, Judge Jackson - he clearly has no clue what he's asking for.

Judge Patel is a woman.


Re:Isnt this just the deathknell for them? (2)

Stonehand (71085) | more than 13 years ago | (#89088)

One way that I could see it is opt-in: IOW, an artist produces an .MP3's, and sends it to Napster with documentation suggesting identity and authenticity. This, then, can be traded. Likewise, the RIAA could furnish official .MP3 versions which are explicitly licensed to Napster... then, only files whose time/frequency fingerprints and, say, CRCs matched known ones would be permitted.

The next phase of the war should start soon. (4)

ka9dgx (72702) | more than 13 years ago | (#89090)

We all knew Napster was doomed, now the war moves on to Gnutella and true peer-peer networks, and other fronts.

On the act locally front, I stopped buying new CDs when Napster went away, and I strongly urge everyone else to do the same.


Oh please... (2)

rkent (73434) | more than 13 years ago | (#89092)

In other news: handgun manufacturers shut down until they can gaurantee that 100% of their guns aren't used illegally

highway patrol funding cut until they gaurantee 100% of traffic doesn't speed

Sony shut down until 100% of VCR owners do not illegally copy tapes

No law has 100% compliance, I don't see why napster, a private company, should be the first to make it happen. Jesus Christ.


Sad (3)

JWW (79176) | more than 13 years ago | (#89094)

It's sad really. In a previous post I saw someone refer to napster at its height to "the history of recorded music on-line".

How long before the record companies will offer up something similar as a pay service?

Never, you say?

That's too bad, because that's what the consumers really want. But I guess the consumer is not the record companies concern. (I leave it to a reply to talk about the poor quality of music these days ;-) ).

Re:Isnt this just the deathknell for them? (1)

Moonshadow (84117) | more than 13 years ago | (#89096)

The fact of the matter is, they can't guarantee 100% blockage. This order is essentially a non-direct deathblow to the entire system. Not that it wasn't dead already.

100%? (2)

Gerad (86818) | more than 13 years ago | (#89097)

Jeez, I don't think I've ever seen a company promise 100% ANYTHING. Even Conxion, which hosts everything Microsoft, doens't garuntee 100% uptime. I wonder if the judges would be happy with 99.9%? Hell, do governments even require absolute 100% for things like <b>saftey</b>? Anyone who works in the US government care to comment?

Guilty before innocent (1)

GreyyGuy (91753) | more than 13 years ago | (#89099)

I read the article and wondered if this isn't the court deciding that the people are guilty and will be guilty until they can prove otherwise. Shouldn't the court have to prove that they are guilty rather then require Napster to prove they are innocent?

Judge says fuel efficiency isn't good enough (1)

Kreeblah (95092) | more than 13 years ago | (#89101)

A judge today ordered auto manufacturers to halt production until fuel efficiency can be increased to 100%.

OK, aside from the sarcasm, how does the judge expect this to be possible, let alone feasable? Statistically, it is a near-zero chance that Napster could block every single possible variance of an MP3. There's encryption, renaming, file-splitting, adding a few seconds of silence to the end, etc., so the checksums, filename checks, fingerprints, or whatever else they're using will not work. If this order stands, Napster will cease to function indefinitely.

Read. Research. Repeat. (3)

kannen (98813) | more than 13 years ago | (#89104)

The order by U.S. District Judge Marilyn Hall Patel came in a closed-door session, according to an RIAA spokesman.

First of all, Judge Patel is a woman. (Not a male, as you indicated.)

He should really have appointed a special master to help him deal with the technical issues (which are clearly over his head).

Furthermore, a technical specialist has been appointed.

At that hearing she also appointed A.J. "Nick" Nichols as a court mediator to handle technical issues related to proposed filtering solutions.

Please read the articles. Just as we become furious with judges who seem out of touch with technology, it is also infuriating to hear condemnations of others by those who are clearly out of touch with the articles being discussed.

However, I do also hope that this will be overturned. It seems clear that Napster is making a "reasonable" effort to bar music piracy.

Famous Attempts at 99% compliance (2)

zpengo (99887) | more than 13 years ago | (#89107)

Lee Harvey Oswald: What if I aim for his foot?

Bill Clinton: What if I just put my hand on her knee?

O.J. Simpson: What if I just scratch her up a bit?

Clyde Barrow: We're Bonnie and Clyde, and you're gonna give us one penny on the dollar or we'll shoot!

(Let's face it -- 99% compliance with the law is still non-compliance)

Not good enough? (4)

desiato (102185) | more than 13 years ago | (#89108)

99% usually seems to be good enough for anything else the government mandates. Hell, 65% is usually good enough.

Just what does the Judge want? (2)

Wag (102501) | more than 13 years ago | (#89109)

Nothing is 100% secure. Nobody can reasonably offer that type of protection.

If this is the type of standard expected there would be no products or services offered anywhere. Even the FDA has set food allowences on the amount of rodent-hair/bug-parts in canned food. If it was 0 we'd be a mighty hungry nation.

Re:The next phase of the war should start soon. (1)

jonnyq (103252) | more than 13 years ago | (#89110)

I too listien to this type of music, and I have and will continue to buy the CD's. None of the record labels who put out the music that I want to hear aren't members of the RIAA, and most of the people behind them that I have talked to think Napster was a great thing to spread popularity.

Reading between the lines (2)

ResHippie (105522) | more than 13 years ago | (#89111)

"Napster, shut down, or I will shut you down."

I'm impressed that Napster is still trying. Their service now blows, and almost all of their users have jumped ship. Even more are gonna jump ship when they start to charge money.

Then again, who's gonna pay money for a service that doesn't do anything.

Yes, but.... (1)

Raymond Luxury Yacht (112037) | more than 13 years ago | (#89117)

... as it is now all you can find on Napster is like "Don Ho's Greatest Hits" and "Boxcare Willy, Live at the Hollywood Bowl". So who'd care?

No one can do 100% with any public system (1)

bildstorm (129924) | more than 13 years ago | (#89131)

I'm sorry, but Judge Patel doesn't have any more of a clue that what the RIAA says.

Anybody who knows about publicly accessible systems knows that these things are possible. Heck, people have been trading ISOs on Hotline for ages, in addition to mp3 files. There are plenty of search engines and plenty of websites available out there as well. I used to d/l mp3 files BEFORE napster.

The only way to prevent digital information from flowing and have absolute security is to remove networks. That's it. And given the number of artists who's popularity has grown with the number of fan sites and traded music, that doesn't make much sense to the RIAA if they REALLy think about it.

Down to 4-5 CDs/year (1)

bildstorm (129924) | more than 13 years ago | (#89132)

Most of the record groups in the US have no sway on me or the music I listen to. A lot of the music I buy now is either classic jazz (like Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgeralnd) or classical. Sometimes I buy some dance music from Europe.

As for modern bands that I like? Well, I've bought The Corrs and David Gray after seeing them in concert. But that's it for quite some time.

STUPID!! (1)

Some12 (129970) | more than 13 years ago | (#89133)

Already naptser alternatives are running almost as well as napster was at it's peak. What the hell are the record executives going to do, start chasing around every program that allows you to share . As far as i'm concerned i hope the recored industry looses lots of money chasing after these people. I just feel bad for the folks like napster that have to deal with it.

Kinda expected, don't you think? (2)

icqqm (132707) | more than 13 years ago | (#89136)

If it's already been ruled that any pirated songs on Napster are Napster's fault, then it doesn't seem surprising that 100% compliance should be expected. The argument everyone's putting forth is that they shouldn't be resposible for the "small number" of people getting through, but the thing is - they are responsible as far as the law is concerned.

99% compliance for parole conditions is still non-compliance, 99% payment of taxes paid still leaves unpaid taxes. Napster shouldn't have to remove every copyrighted file from its network, but if it's been found responsible for every file, then it should be responsible for removing every file from its network. Everyone's problem is with giving Napster responsibility, not ensuring 100% compliance with the law.

At one point... (4)

mszeto (133525) | more than 13 years ago | (#89138)

At one point Napster will figure out that the record industry was happy about the verdict because it ineviatably means the death of napster.

It may cost them millions of dollars to figure this out, but eventually they will. The other file sharing programs are really taking off. Go to Zero Paid [] and check out all file share programs. Napster has become unnecessary - and their service depends on them being necessary.

Talk about constipation (1)

displacer (136053) | more than 13 years ago | (#89140)

When I saw the subject, I initially saw "99% Blockage Isn't Good Enough...says Judge" and thought - "I knew judges were anal, this just proves it."

99.999% (1)

BiggestPOS (139071) | more than 13 years ago | (#89141)

I'd say fine nines would be good enough, I mean, honestly, thats all I get from the phone company as far as uptime on my T1. Thats all we should expect from Napster. The funniest part is, everyone has moved on to something new! Morpheus anyone?

Re:The next phase of the war should start soon. (2)

AntiNorm (155641) | more than 13 years ago | (#89150)

On the act locally front, I stopped buying new CDs when Napster went away, and I strongly urge everyone else to do the same.

I have done the same. However, I'm just waiting for the RIAA to spin the loss of sales as a result of mini-boycotts like this into another argument against Napster or Napster-like services. "Napster was killing our sales before, but now that we got rid of it, it's really killing our sales now!"

One of these days, the RIAA will have to wake up and realize that online distribution isn't going to go away, no matter how hard they try.


Re: Idiots (1)

StCredZero (169093) | more than 13 years ago | (#89156)

One thing that major label artists could do would be to demand that they retain the ability to publish themselves online, with a certain royalty going back to the record company.

Whatever happened to those stores that were supposed to burn custom mix CDs for you?

Re:The next phase of the war should start soon. (1)

jester-tx (170962) | more than 13 years ago | (#89157)

I'm there. I bought more CD's as a result of Napster, no doubt about it. I also like the idea of buying used CD's - hell, with one of those Skip Doctors nearly any CD is recoverable :) I understand the RIAA being worried about protecting their interests - what I don't understand is that they can be so completely clueless as to what actually is in their best interest...

The elusive 5 9s (1)

pizen (178182) | more than 13 years ago | (#89161)

Napster will never achieve 99.999% removal just as Microsoft will never achieve the 99.999% uptime they advertise.

Re:Argh... (1)

Nos. (179609) | more than 13 years ago | (#89166)

Unfortunately the real world doesn't work that way. I can manufacture (write code) my widget. Now if someone uses that widget to commit a crime, I will not be forced to stop making said widget. Say for example something mundane like a potato peeler. Then some trenchcoat wearing teenager runs out and stabs six people because Marilyn Manson told him to. It is the responsibility of the manufacturer to ensure only legal use of the product. Napster can still be used to trade music that is free.

Re:Argh... (1)

Nos. (179609) | more than 13 years ago | (#89167)

ACK!! NOT the responsiblity of the manufaturer! Must always use preview, even when not using html!

Re:The next phase of the war should start soon. (1)

cnkeller (181482) | more than 13 years ago | (#89168)

On the act locally front, I stopped buying new CDs when Napster went away, and I strongly urge everyone else to do the same.

Uhh, I haven't bought any new CD since napster started either. Let's face it, why would I pay for music when I can download it for free? Yes, it's probably illegal, no I don't really care. Yes, the artists are getting screwed. I'm simply being honest. Of course, I think that CD's are overpriced and underproduced anyway, so I'll join you in not buying any now as well. But, if and when Gnutella and Freenet get more mainstraim, I'll simply move to downloading .ogg files. My form of protest for paying $15-$20 for the 200-300 CD's I bought over the years.....

Re:The next phase of the war should start soon. (1)

Happy Monkey (183927) | more than 13 years ago | (#89169)

Listen to the stuff you've got already.

Good, for Napster. (1)

haplo21112 (184264) | more than 13 years ago | (#89170)

This whole thing has gotten completely ridiculous. They should fight this, to the death, cause they are gonna die anyway...we have a right to download the music, and there really is no way any service can make 100% stick anyway.

Re:Good, for Napster. (1)

haplo21112 (184264) | more than 13 years ago | (#89171)

How do i get to be a troll for this?

Re:Sad (1)

haplo21112 (184264) | more than 13 years ago | (#89172)

We were just talking about that here at work...perhaps record companies could make more $$$ if they would invest their dollars for recording sessions etc, in music acts with talent, that will last the test of time. Which do you think is gonna be a higher seller over its history of existance a disc by Metallica, Rush, AeroSmith, or Creed...or the lastest piece of toilet bound material by the back door boys, Nsynch, or that one is gonna give about Brittney Boobs in another year or so, but I can promise without a doubt Metallica's Kill'em all or Rush's Moving Pictures will still be stocked in quantity in 10 years. Record compnaies should stop investing in acts that have on talent, and only put out the cash to those that can deliver for the long haul.

Re:in that case.... (1)

haplo21112 (184264) | more than 13 years ago | (#89173)

Hey Rythum Method is Copyright of Rush, Neil Peart and Atlantic records, Napster can't use that.

Here's an approach for Napster... (1)

bsdbigot (186157) | more than 13 years ago | (#89175)

The CNET article mentions that the audio-fingerprinting technology is a barrier to creating a database of "forbidden" songs... I invoke the complement rule: Napster should maintain a database of "acceptable" songs - this has two benefits, assuming RIAA wants all the songs that they own protected from piracy:
  1. The subset of all songs that are not blacklisted is likely to be much, much less than the songs we can trade freely
  2. Storage and processing for this smaller set of songs is - duh! - smaller! Less overhead in checking if a song is allowed than checking if it's blacklisted.

This is also a strategy that could get RIAA off Napster's back: working under the assumption that all songs are blacklisted until proven otherwise.

Admittedly, this probably sounds easier than it really is...

Bypassing the filters (2)

bl968 (190792) | more than 13 years ago | (#89178)

You can easily bypass any of the filters napster has put in place. On a web page, list the songs and randomly generated or sequentially generated numbers such as M01020. Then compresses the music with a compression program such as winzip, arj, pkarc or one of the other compression formats. Next you take and rename the file to name.mp3. Now once you do that simply login to napster. Their software will not see a matching title, artist, or song signature since it is in compressed form. Thus, there is no method, which anyone can promise to be 100% successful in blocking all copyrighted material.

I am not a music pirate. Nor do I suggest or encourage anyone to use this method. However, what I have used napster in the past for was to recover music I have legally purchased in the past but I have since damaged and/or lost the media for.

When I'm good I'm very good, when I'm bad I'm better, But when I'm evil you better run :P

Freakin' retaahded. (3)

xmutex (191032) | more than 13 years ago | (#89179)

This is a horrible judgment. It's insane.

What's next? Are judges going to shut down university computer systems because obviously, some kids somewhere in the system are using their home directories to store w4r3z?

I realize that the judge is really just trying to do the RIAA favor and really stop Napster's heartbeat, but this silly.

People ship CDrs with pirated software through the USPS-- better shut them down, too!

Crap, I tell you. Crap.

Idiots (3)

guinsu (198732) | more than 13 years ago | (#89181)

How can they expect 100% compliance from Napster when video tape/cd-r and mini disc manufacturers have never had a burden like that placed on them.

jeesh... (3)

maddogsparky (202296) | more than 13 years ago | (#89182)

...they can guarentee 99% complience, but Patel says this is not good enough...

Wish the judges in the Microsoft case were that strict...

in an additional judicial order (1)

cbowland (205263) | more than 13 years ago | (#89183)

The supereme court ordered Judge Patel to stop making inane rulings until he can guarantee that 100% of his rulings will not be overturned on appeal.

Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day.

Bad Implications for ISPs, AIM, etc. (3)

byteCoder (205266) | more than 13 years ago | (#89184)

I guess this sets a legal precedent for anyone who has a file distribution mechanism to make sure that there are absolute no unlicensed copyrighted material on their sites.

Does this mean that AIM needs to start blocking Buddy Icons that are infringing on someone's copyrights? I guess so much for my Bart Simpson buddy icon. (But how does AOL know that I don't have proper authorization and clearance to use that icon?)

Napster is dead in the water (2)

ageitgey (216346) | more than 13 years ago | (#89187)

Napster has effectively lost what few remaining users it had now that they aren't running at all (and haven't been for over a week). The newly announced pay service is completely new software where certain approved songs from labels and artists bought off are available at low quality in some yet-unspecified format where users "can't make cd copies", or so they say. Basically it's a service where you can download low-quality versions of songs to listen to on your computer for a fee, except you have to supply your own bandwidth and put up with only getting what is offered by others. Mark my words - that will never be sucessful with AudioGalaxy, etc around now.

In other words, napster is history. The media is just writing stories about it because they don't have anything better to write about it or don't have any clue what they are saying (See the hilarious CNN stories about Microsoft letting manufactures alter desktop icons. Every time it was repeated on headline news last night, it changed slightly until it was so far from true it was hilarious. Poor anchors.). AudioGalaxy, etc are the stories these days, not napster.

99.999% is good enough. (1)

Traicovn (226034) | more than 13 years ago | (#89191)

everything in the computer industry is 99.999%. You can't be 100% sure of anything. Nobody's perfect. Not even the judge.

I could change the titles of my songs to something that was allowed, If they scan the headers, I could modify those. It's just not possible in ANY industry or really ANYTHING AT ALL to be 100% secure, safe, or positive. Napster has done a very good job of blocking stuff, Out of several hundred MP3's on an individuals computer, they allow something like, maybe three. I have some no-name stuff that one of my friends did, and Napster won't even let THAT be transfered.

What hasn't been blocked, has been lost because Napster's members gave up. The Justice department has to understand this.

Even the Justice Department can't be 100% sure of anything. There is always a chance that someone can be wrong, or lie, or make a mistake. Nobody's perfect. Not even the judge.

[Something witty and intelligent should have appeared here.]

Re:Big News (1)

CtrlPhreak (226872) | more than 13 years ago | (#89192)

Since when did it count anyway? All I think of is OJ....

oh yea? really ? (1)

Durandel1020 (230673) | more than 13 years ago | (#89198)

How many people would still use Napster now anyway?! You would be so lucky find my MP3 of someone playing a trumpet with their butt, let alone anything decent to listen to. Roland

The reason for 100% (1)

gosand (234100) | more than 13 years ago | (#89199)

The RIAA demands 100% blockage.
Napster agrees (knowing it really isn't possible).
Someone from the RIAA successfully posts a copyrighted song.
Napster violates the agreement. Bye-bye Napster.

Re:The next phase of the war should start soon. (1)

duckie13 (234928) | more than 13 years ago | (#89201)

That's kinda rough for me actually. It's all good in theory, but with the music I listen to (semi-underground emo / punk / indie / etc.), people on Napster rarely had it anyways, and even now the people on OpenNap servers and IRC don't even have it. Plus, I usually buy my CDs at shows anyways, where the band only charges $10 for it, and they get that money.


Big News (5)

Calle Ballz (238584) | more than 13 years ago | (#89202)

This means that DNA evidence can no longer be allowed to stand up in court. It's only 99.999998% effective, you know.

Re:Here's an approach for Napster... (1)

ferringb (241690) | more than 13 years ago | (#89203)

the problem with this is fairly simply though, consider if they're using a list of auroral finger prints for the songs and only allowing those through that match, what if I, a DJ hobbyist wanted to share my music? I'd be screwed royally because it'd only be allowing a small portion through, and only that which it knows is alright. true, it beautifully takes care of being sued (only thing they're allowing is stuff they've checked already), but that'd serve as a sort of additional death for napster, because napster has always had that element of finding something new, something few or nobody knows about.

This is absurd. (1)

wackysootroom (243310) | more than 13 years ago | (#89204)

Does this mean that if a software company releases a piece of software that is not 100% reliable that they can be sued? If the RIAA can get a court order to force Napster to create bug free software, I begin to wonder how many other content-filtering software providers can be held liable for bugs in their software.

Argh... (2)

RareHeintz (244414) | more than 13 years ago | (#89205)

Judge Patel appears to lack the technicall savvy of say, Judge Jackson - he clearly has no clue what he's asking for. The only really reliable way to ensure this would be to only allow users to swap authorized files with, for example, known names, sizes, and MD5 checkums.

He should really have appointed a special master to help him deal with the technical issues (which are clearly over his head).

Of course, the other explanation is that he's in someone's pocket. Hmm... Are judges required to give disclosure of their personal finances - investments and all that?

Anyway, I have to bet this will get overturned by any half-bright appeals court.

Just my US$2e-02,
- B

Re:Insane... (1)

ryanvm (247662) | more than 13 years ago | (#89206)

Even with the algorithm produced by the genius 20-year-old...

Wha? I hate to break it to you, but if you think that Shawn Fanning is still doing all the coding at Napster, you're nuts.

Do you have any idea what kind of talent you can buy when someone stuffs umpteen million dollars of venture capital in your pocket?

I can assure you that Napster has bought programmers so smart that they make Fanning look like Forest Gump.

Re:The next phase of the war should start soon. (1)

bahtama (252146) | more than 13 years ago | (#89207)

That's sweet! I think no one should ever buy CDS anymore.. Oh wait, how we will get our free music off the Internet then? The bottom line is someone needs to buy it until the companies do it themselves, which I don't see happening any time soon. I think alot of people don't really think about how it gets out there. Also, the more people that buy the CD, the faster it can be spread. But in the end, someone out there is buying your music for you.


Re:The judge *IS* right (1)

EllisDees (268037) | more than 13 years ago | (#89216)

You *can't* steal music. You might be able to steal cds or albums, but the music itself is far too immaterial to walk off with.

Besides, gnutella is much, much better now with all the napster refugees.

Re:The next phase of the war should start soon. (1)

cavemanf16 (303184) | more than 13 years ago | (#89225)

So true man! I haven't bought one new group's CD since Napster died either. I recently bought four new CD's, but they were all from groups I have multiple albums from anyways. I be ROFLMAO when the record companies realize what idiots they are to try and block technological advance when they have to announce after this Christmas that they made half what they did last year.

Besides, the only way to maintain 100% compliance is to hold all the 'allowed' songs on a central server, which goes completely against all that the Napster architecture is.

Re:Good, for Napster. (1)

Zaknafein500 (303608) | more than 13 years ago | (#89226)

. . .we have a right to download the music. . .

How exactly do you have the RIGHT to download something for free that is meant to be sold for money? If you haven't paid for the album, then your rights to it are exactly none. Like it or not, music is not meant to be free. If you like it, pay for it. Copyright holders have every right to make sure that their work is protected.

Retail Stores no longer selling CD's (1)

tazmaster (306623) | more than 13 years ago | (#89228)

In related news Blockbuster Music and Wal-Mart, among others, was issued a ruling today prohibiting them from selling cd's because shoplifting and employee theft kept them from haveing a 100% blockage of stolen music. BMG music club has also been disbanded due to non-payment of royalties due to lost mail and mail fraud. Note: if you don't understand my post please look up sarcasm in the dictionary... I'll wait.

Re:The next phase of the war should start soon. (5)

MSBob (307239) | more than 13 years ago | (#89229)

Interesting point. I haven't bought a music cd in ages. Not because I'm a cheapskate or beacuse I'm particularly poor but like you I haven't found anything half decent lately. The only CD I pondered buying recently was some Karl Jenkins stuff. I wanted to buy it BECAUSE I found a couple of his pieces on Napster and thought it would be cool to have it in my car...

Anyway I think the music industry's problems have nothing to do with piracy but everything to do with the utter crap that they keep producing and sponsoring. I can't name a SINGLE modern band that would make me download their music let alone buy a CD. RIAA napster isn't your problem. Shit music is.

Re:Good, for Napster. (1)

datick (312683) | more than 13 years ago | (#89235)

we have a right to download the music

ummm.....have you missed the whole damn thing? according the courts, we have no such right. also, according to the courts, the riaa has every right to make us pay for the music.

there really is no way any service can make 100% stick anyway i think that is the point, they don't like napster and are doing what they can to end it, without blatantly saying, "there is no more napster."

Re:100%? (5)

BIGJIMSLATE (314762) | more than 13 years ago | (#89239)

Heh, exactly. I'd like to see ONE gov't regulation that requires 100% compliance.

And 100% is pratctically impossible anyways, because if just ONE song out of...say...5 billion gets through, its not 100% anymore.

Personally, she's asking WAAAAY too much from them, considering they're already dead.

Oh look, a dead horse! Let's beat it!

Re:Reasonableness? (1)

terrymr (316118) | more than 13 years ago | (#89240)

The judge may likely get some heat for this her previous remarks and orders give some appearance of bias but in reality the appeal court will simply vacate and remand back to her. Although I'm not sure what the appeal courts position will be on a jusge effectively reinstating an order they had vacated - they might get a bit grumpy about that.

Not to mention the independant artists who have lost a distribution channel for their work because of an overzlealous judge making orders that don't stand up to legal scrutiny.

Re:Kinda expected, don't you think? (1)

terrymr (316118) | more than 13 years ago | (#89241)

Would you mind providing an example of 99% compliance with parole conditions ? that would require at least 100 different restrictions being put on the parolee - likely to be considered overly burdensome when they're brought before a judge for a violation.

Do you comply 100% with the law 24 hours a day 365 days a year ? including even the stupid laws you didn't know existed ?

Re:Here's an approach for Napster... (1)

terrymr (316118) | more than 13 years ago | (#89242)

yes but this runs contrary to accepted legal protections - ie if you're not doing something illegal you are not required to prove it's not illegal before doing it.

Reminds me of a part of Snow Crash.. (2)

Pop n' Fresh (411094) | more than 13 years ago | (#89252)

Remember when L Bob Rife (of Neal Stephenson's excellent 'Snow Crash') is pontificating on his rise to power, and his contempt for government? A reporter is asking him about how the government broke up AT&T once upon a time, and Rife says something like 'It's like they figured out how to legislate the horse just as Henry Ford was cranking out Model Ts'.

The RIAA is just now putting the screws to Napster, just as Aimster and a dozen other programs are taking off. You can't kill an idea.

Re:Argh... (1)

dinivin (444905) | more than 13 years ago | (#89253)

Or perhaps Judge Patel is well aware of the technical issues and has dismissed them because they're irrelevent. If someone is violating the law (and I'm making no judgement about whether or not Napster is doing this) then it's irrelevent how difficult it is for that person (or entity) to stop breaking the law. A judge can, and should, force them to stop irregardless of the technical issues involved.


Re:Just what does the Judge want? (1)

nougatmachine (445974) | more than 13 years ago | (#89256)

Exactly. Using this kind of logic, if the judge has even once in her entire lifetime made a freudian slip while speaking to the court, she is not "100% competant" and should not be allowed to judge cases.

There will always be ways around it... (1)

kypper (446750) | more than 13 years ago | (#89257)

but nobody cares.

Napster's use has dropped, and we have all moved onto Audiogalaxy, or Gnutella, or what have you.

The judge cannot expect 100%; we know this as tecchies. However, since few of the legal profession understand technology, then it is to be expected that he would request it.

This is just the final nail on the coffin.

Screw 3...

Re:Guilty before innocent (1)

andres32a (448314) | more than 13 years ago | (#89259)

Absolutely right. But you see the thing is that the RIAA is trying to set some kind of "example" with Napster. And the court is acting as if it worked for the RIAA. I do wonder if these people actually think that other peer to peer services will be intimidated by this move... Well, maybe ill stop coding that teleportation module for instant traveling throught the net... might get sued by the airliners!!!

Napster is dead ... (1)

Genoaschild (452944) | more than 13 years ago | (#89262)

Use Gnutella. I use the limewire client. You can music, divx movies, and nearly any popular copywrited program in existence if you look hard enough. Why use napster? Napster should pack its bags and settle its losses and move on to "the next big thing."

Re:The next phase of the war should start soon. (2)

night_flyer (453866) | more than 13 years ago | (#89265)

buy CDs used at pawn shops for $1 to $5... the RIAA sees none of it! (I wonder if they will make that illegal next...) but like you I havent purchased a new CD with the exception of a few indi artists in the last few months... in 2000 (using napster as a guide) I purchased 50+ CDs


Evasion (1)

TimeTrav (460837) | more than 13 years ago | (#89267)

What about filename changers such as the ever-famous pig-latin convertor? Will Napster have to individually monitor each and every file? We can all see the handwriting on the wall for Napster's future.

Why I like Napster (5)

Derkec (463377) | more than 13 years ago | (#89269)

Napster pretty much sits out there and gets beat up on. Then it gets back up and fights again. That takes some guts. More importantly, as long as Napster is fighting, the RIAA lawyers have work to do. When Napster finally concedes defeat, the lawsuits will start targetting distributers of Gnuetella and other sharing tools. That, or they'll start actively targetting individuals. Go Napster! Keep on getting beat on, the rest of us love ya for it.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?