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Penn State Launches Napster Music Service

timothy posted more than 10 years ago | from the so-that's-what-college-was-for dept.

Music 249

Owner of Azkaban writes "CNN has a story about PSU launching Napster for its own students." Also at live.psu.edu." This is the service we posted about last fall; in three days, the Penn State system has served more than 100,000 songs.

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papster (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971671)

haha
wesley
clark FIVE ten EARTH MAN EARTH MANnny man
tom.
clark. the man comes in.

Re:papster (-1, Offtopic)

Doomrat (615771) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971850)

Exactly. I've been telling people for months that the best way to alpha besten a jonk is to means test the ladies. When will people understand that a gentle approach to du is required for 509% reduction? Helken St. Donerbits reported that a slouch is to arrive in the 4th December 1530. Is ths true? WAS this true? Did it eat the required amount?

Duh.... (3, Funny)

flewp (458359) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971674)

This is old news, I was using Napster years ago. And back then it was free! Of course, we had to walk 15 miles uphill both ways in snow to get our music over a 9600 baud connection...

Bah, I got nothing.

Re:Duh.... (1)

flewp (458359) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971686)

Now that I've actually read the article instead of making a lame attempt at a first post, I have a question.

The article mentions the service is free (well, included "free" in tuition) and anyone on campus is eligble to use it. It then goes on to say that for a fee you can burn it to CD. So... is it free to download the music and play it on your computer, and you only pay to burn it to CD? And if so, what kind of format are they using and also what kind of DRM?

Re:Duh.... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971706)

> 9600 baud connection

Modems never reached 9600 baud

Re:Duh.... (-1, Offtopic)

spiny (87740) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971723)

YUO = TEH FAIL IT

Re:Duh.... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971731)

LALL!. Then what was the 14400 baud USRobotics I used for 5 years lall.

get a clue duder.

Re:Duh.... (3, Informative)

BorgDrone (64343) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971750)

Then what was the 14400 baud USRobotics I used for 5 years lall.
You mean a 14k4 bps modem.
Iirc those worked at 2400 baud, just like every modem above 2400 kbps.

baud != bits per second, baud is transitions per second, the bitrate depends on the baudrate and the modulation.

Re:Duh.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971886)

> baud != bits per second, baud is transitions per second, the bitrate depends on the baudrate and the modulation.

That's meaningless baud has entered the english language as meaning speed which is what it was with modems otherwise you wouldn't have 14400 28800 33600 or 56600 baud modems

Re:Duh.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971917)

No. The fact is this: your usage is incorrect. Stop complaining because you're too stupid to understand the difference between 'band' and 'bits per second'.

This just in (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971677)

The SCO group and the RIAA have joined forces, and cross licensed each other's IP. the RIAA is now going to start randomly suing linux users, and SCO will be going after several thousand penn state students.

In other words, nothing has changed. move along now

Why? (0)

ObviousGuy (578567) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971679)

Why would they open themselves up to this kind of legal problem? Let the kids share and suffer the consequences, don't bring the school into the picture!

Please, don't mod this guy up... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971702)

Read his name and look at his posting history. He's a 100% karma whore and, more often than not, a pathetic little troll. Spend your mod points on someone else worthy of them.

Re:Please, don't mod this guy up... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971762)

Look at the parent's name and his posting history - "Anonymous Coward" is all over the place!

What a pathetic little troll.

Re:Please, don't mod this guy up... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971864)

STFU, ObviousGuy

Lets hope this was intended as a joke (2, Informative)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972016)

Lets hope this was intended as a joke.

Just in case it wasn't and you been in a hole for last year.

This is the new napster. The commercial one, that signed a contract with penn state to take part of the kids fees and give them to the RIAA because madonna is starving to death. Or something like that anyway.

It is legal. Well legal from the RIAA point of view. That of course people with non-ms os (or how about those without a computer? or who don't like riaa music?) have to pay for it yet can't use it is merely one of those boring side effects. (Can you force people to pay for something they can't use?)

PSU has a history with Napster (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971680)

The decision by PSU had to be made. I wasn't happy with it either but a computer is rather useless without programming apps.

Windows (sepecially server 2003) could be an option if it wasn't for the standard critical patches needing deployment every few weeks. Napster does not change this.

Linux support for DWO is still not there. Unfortunate for this otherwise solid choice, but it's true.

In the end I created my own, and I stand by my decision. A much more viable alternative.

I assume they've banned DC++ ? (3, Interesting)

rokzy (687636) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971683)

at my uni the DC++ network isn't reachable from uni computers but is from personal computers in campus accommodation. it's so easy and fast a non-free service couldn't compete on equal terms.

Re:I assume they've banned DC++ ? (1)

Dilbert_ (17488) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971821)

I agree: you cannot beat 'free' and 'unlimited choice of songs'. At least not in a real free market environment.

Napster is back (3, Funny)

grey3 (160961) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971684)

Well, it looks like Napster is finally back, but only for "Educational Use Only"

Oh yes! (2, Funny)

graveyardduckx (735761) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971692)

From the state that brings you Hershey chocolate! Now they're bringing you something else to feed your laziness! I guess it's all about convenience.

Re:Oh yes! (1)

flewp (458359) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971697)

So saving money by buying only the songs you want (I assume it's like iTunes, etc, where you pay per song instead of buying a whole album) is laziness?

Get off your high horse, if you could order something and get it instantly (or within a few seconds/minutes) instead of going out to a store to get it, you would too.

I've been trolled.

Re:Oh yes! (0)

graveyardduckx (735761) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971711)

No I wouldn't, I'd load up mIRC and download for free, screw paying a dime. :-)

Re:Oh yes! (1)

m0kemon (714623) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971716)

You're absolutely right! Honestly, I can't think how iTunes is selling so much! If people can get it for free, why pay for it ? I have lots of mp3, but way more original albums. I like having the originals, and I usually download the mp3 before buying an album! Now, back in the question. Are those guys at Penn State morons ? or do they just like appearing on slashdot ? :>

Re:Oh yes! (1)

cyb97 (520582) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972035)

It's not dead is easy for any joe-schmoe to find any song he likes, so in many cases it'll be quicker to find stuff on iTunes.

Further some people have ethics or something (i dunno) and actually prefer to pay the artist for their contribution. (or they just don't like breaking laws... you choose)

I must get some of that! (3, Funny)

carndearg (696084) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971788)

I thought Hershey [hersheys.com] produced those cocoa flavoured sugar candy bars that make such a good alternative to Kendal Mint Cake [cumbria-calling.com] when I'm over there. The news that they also make chocolate [lindt.com] is most welcome, I must try to find some next time I'm somewhere I can spend dollars.
You'll be telling me next that Cadbury [cadbury.co.uk] have started producing chocolate!

Re:I must get some of that! (1)

carndearg (696084) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971811)

Damn.reply to a post with a funny and meanwhile the parent gets modded down. C'est la vie!, mod me down, mod me down...

IF I EVER MEET YOU I WILL KICK YOUR ASS!!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971824)

Anyone? (1)

grey3 (160961) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971696)

Anyone currently going to Penn State care to comment?

Re:Anyone? (3, Informative)

Jon Shaft (208648) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971979)

I go there. I also work for a helpdesk for the students on campus. There's not much to comment on yet. It's only been in operationg for students for a few days. The intrface sucks and I wish they went with iTunes, but oh well. The only thing I've heard from students so far is some odd errors they recieve when trying to get their napster client setup. Nothing exciting from this report. :)

Re:Anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7972048)

God, I miss the Lion's Den. How is it? Still the shithole I remember so fondly?

WMA (1)

millahtime (710421) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972082)

Doeasn't napster use WMA files now???

Does this mean when the students leave PSU that all their music will stop working?

Re:Anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7972117)

Is the Penn State CS program still so poor that they do not have a single student with the talent to reverse engineer the Win32 client and write a Linux client?

Never was much a school....

NITTANY LION IS ON TEH SPOKE!!~1` (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7972034)

Re:Anyone? (1)

KimJ721 (732612) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972120)

I'm a Penn State grad student, but only on-campus students get the service right now. Also, as a grad student, it's not clear that I'll ever be included -- I might just get the faculty/staff "discount" on a subscription.

Not more piracy (-1, Troll)

PhysicsExpert (665793) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971704)

I am seriously worried by the number of new file sharing services that seem to be popping up. Despite all the arguments to the contrary music 'sharing' is piracy and in the long term it can only hurt the consumer as musicians will not make music if there is no profit on it.

The worst thing about it is that our children are growing up thinking that stealing is ok. I expressly banned my son from pirating music but the other day I saw him playing an MP3. Needless to say I've now taken all his CD's away from him in order to teach him a lesson but I doubt his is old enough to understand why filesharing is wrong. Unfortunately I then caught him again so I've had take more practical action. Now I've put a short script on his computer that will delete a random file from his userspace whenever he attempts to play an MP3.

Re:Not more piracy (5, Insightful)

Richard M. Nixon (697603) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971771)

Despite all the arguments to the contrary music 'sharing' is piracy

I guess some people will not truely understand the different between copyright infringment and piracy until they are killed on the high seas by people with eye patches who go "Arrrrg!"

and in the long term it can only hurt the consumer as musicians will not make music if there is no profit on it.

Not as long as the majority of music downloaders use p2p primarily to search for new music and purchase the stuff they like.

I expressly banned my son from pirating music but the other day I saw him playing an MP3.

The horror! An mp3!
Where did it come from?
Did he download it from a bands official website where they promote their music by providing free samples?
Did he rip it himself from one of his legally purchased CDs?
Well, obviously copying of any sort is the equivilant of looting and murder on the high seas.

The office of homeland security will be by soon to escort your son to his new cave in Siberia where he will be spending the rest of his life. In fact, it is obvious that you haven't done enough to instill in your son the belief that he doesn't have the right to do whatever he wants with his own property. I guess you will have to be deported too you terrorist! You're no better than the parents of John Walker!

Re:Not more piracy (0)

odeee (741339) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971838)

Did he rip it himself from one of his legally purchased CDs?

IANAL.

It should be remembered that most music recordings have several copyrights on them. As well as having a copyright on the lyrics and the musical works there is usually also a copyright on the sound recording, which means that you aren't allowed to re-record the copy for either backup purposes or personal use (eg ripping a CD to MP3).

Scary isn't it!

Re:Not more piracy (1)

deitel99 (533532) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971912)

As well as having a copyright on the lyrics and the musical works there is usually also a copyright on the sound recording, which means that you aren't allowed to re-record the copy for either backup purposes or personal use

I think the point is that the different copyrights prevent you from doing different things. The copyright on the lyrics or the tune prevent me from going to a local recording studio and playing my own version of it. I haven't infringed the copyright the RIAA is concerned with, but it's still illegal. Making backup copies etc which although would seem to infringe the sound recording copyright, still comes under the terms of fair-use, and as such is not illegal.

Then again, just like you, IANAL.

Re:Not more piracy (1)

ratamacue (593855) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972145)

you aren't allowed to re-record the copy for either backup purposes or personal use

If that's true, then the law is wrong, and the only solution is civil disobedience. If I obtained a music recording legally, then I'll be damned if anyone is going to tell me I can't back it up or convert it to MP3 to play in my car.

Re:Not more piracy (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971907)

I guess some people will not truely understand the different between copyright infringment and piracy until they are killed on the high seas by people with eye patches who go "Arrrrg!"

I guess this wouldn't be a /. article without someone pointing out the difference between piracy and copyright infringement. Arrr!

Re:Not more piracy (3, Informative)

Mr_Silver (213637) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971914)

I guess some people will not truely understand the different between copyright infringment and piracy until they are killed on the high seas by people with eye patches who go "Arrrrg!"

Not necessarily. In the UK at least.

I was speaking to a lawyer friend of mine and he was explaining that "theft" is an extremely complex area of the law and it is entirely possible that if a judge decided that what you have done should be classed as theft, then that is what you'll get charged under.

Couple of examples: British Rail vs a ticket tout. British Rail claimed that the ticket tout was stealing (theft) from them by reselling tickets. Despite the fact that the tickets had been legitimately bought and could be used over and over again - they claimed that it was theft of potential revenues. They won.

One other example: If you managed to find a way to take money from other peoples bank accounts and put it into yours. Technically until you take out the money, you haven't stolen anything. It's just an additional number of zeros added to the end of your bank balance. However - in the eyes of the law, you have stolen and you can be tried and sent to prison for theft (and people have) even though you haven't actually stolen anything.

What I'm trying to say is that although Slashdotters like to think that "theft" and "copyright infringement" are two completely seperate and distinct things (and even I think that too), the law regarding the two is a lot more complex and often means that they cross heavily into each other.

In summary: In the UK at least, when people talk about theft of music by digital copying, they're not completely wrong - but they aren't completely right either.

Re:Not more piracy (1)

Tim C (15259) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972069)

Not as long as the majority of music downloaders use p2p primarily to search for new music and purchase the stuff they like.

Now, I'm not necessarily doubting the veracity of your claim, but I see that brought up here everytime there's a RIAA vs. World story, and I don't remember ever having seen any hard evidence to back it up.

Sure, I've seen lots of anecdotal evidence, from people here saying that that's what they do, but that doesn't actually prove anything. They could be telling the truth, they could be lying; either way, they may well not be representative of P2P users in general.

Do you (or anyone else reading this) actually have any hard data to support this sort of claim? If nothing else, it would be useful ammunition.

Not that it really matters either way to me, I guess - here in the UK, beneficial or not, copyright law (as I understand it - IANAL, etc) forbids unauthorised copying full stop. That includes ripping CDs I've bought to mp3, or taping them to play in a car cassette player, etc. Ain't the lack of a fair use clause grand?

Oh, and for what it's worth, the whole "piracy vs copyright infringement" argument is pretty much a lost cause unfortunately, just like "hacker vs cracker", especially as it's now in the dictionary [m-w.com] . I personally wouldn't waste too much time or effort pursuing it; you're not going to convince people to change now. At worst, you'll just end up confusing the issue, and detracting from your main points.

Re:Not more piracy - Slashdot Hypocricy in Action (2, Funny)

mumblestheclown (569987) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972178)

So, let's get this straight.

The guy who is against copyright infringement is modded a "troll"

Whereas, the guy who:

  • Misunderstands the fact that words' meanings evolve over time (probably one of those "hacker" vs "cracker" guys, too)
  • Engages in silly borderline counterexamples in order to distract attention from the main topic at hand (this bit about "legally obtained MP3s") (remember: we're not talking about the general case here - we're talking about the case where ONE guy who KNOWS his son's behavior patterns has made a decision)
  • Engages in ridiculous slippery slope arguments essentially (though perhaps with some miguided attempt at humor) equating a responsible parent with a terrorist.
is modded up as "insightful".

What an upside down world this slashdot is.

Re:Not more piracy (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971932)

"as musicians will not make music if there is no profit on it."

It is really very sad to view art in this fashion, as if art was only made for profit. I have been an artist most of my life(musician, painter, writer) and I have never made a bit of art becuase I thought it would make money(I'm not saying I wouldnt be pleased if it did). NO ONE thinks, "Hey I'll become a painter and gets lots of money." It would be much more realistic to think, "I'll try to be a painter and be very poor". Real artists make art because they are compelled to do so, and simply love creating. Real artists do NOT include entertainers such as Britney Spears or the like.

Again its very sad to see people viewing art through a very narrow capitolistic frame.

Re:Not more piracy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971937)

The guy you replied to is trolling - but yes, that is an oft-believed untruth, and I concur wholeheartedly with your response.

Re:Not more piracy (1)

Reivec (607341) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972017)

wow dude, what kind of messed up parent are you? Your kid is going to grow up with some serious repression issues and want to kill things. I guess killing things is better than piracy to you though, isn't it?

(just so I don't get flamed I am half joking here.... or am I?)

Hrm.. The number seems a little low... (2, Interesting)

Crasoum (618885) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971709)

out of some odd 83k in the school, only 100k songs in three days? That is less then 2 songs per person, over three days. Regardless at least someone is getting a bigger cut (RIAA, Artist, Napster, whatever)

I was wrong (2, Interesting)

Crasoum (618885) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971717)

About 6 songs per student. (17k)

That's what I get for knee-jerk posting.

Re:Hrm.. The number seems a little low... (2, Informative)

e6003 (552415) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971772)

Jason Schultz (staff attorney the EFF) has some figures in his blog [typepad.com] . He reckons the figure is just over 15% of students using the (crippled) service. ISTR you can't play the music anymore once you leave Penn State. A ringing endorsement for sure!

Re:Hrm.. The number seems a little low... (3, Interesting)

Technician (215283) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971936)

Shh.. Don't tell anyone. Requested streams without the DJ blather.. Line out - Line in VS $1.00 a song that has to be burned on a CD but not saved to hard drive to keep. Watch for these to appear on the local sneaker net as MP3's on CD and DVD's. Don't expect them to anounce this on or off campus. Someone will figure out how to take the freebie music (well included with tuition) with them. Many will reason it's paid for. It's mine. I'll take it with me.

Re:Hrm.. The number seems a little low... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971943)

Even better, just rip straight from the Windows Media Player. There are several hacks to get around many of the DRM restrictions.

Re:Hrm.. The number seems a little low... (1)

Jon Shaft (208648) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971990)

out of some odd 83k in the school, only 100k songs in three days? That is less then 2 songs per person, over three days. Regardless at least someone is getting a bigger cut (RIAA, Artist, Napster, whatever) 83k students are in the entire University system. Right now Napster is ONLY available to those living on campus. I don't remember the number of connections in residence halls, but I believe it amounts to around 16k at the main campus.

Re:Hrm.. The number seems a little low... (1)

Jon Shaft (208648) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971999)

d'oh -- forgot the line breaks.

out of some odd 83k in the school, only 100k songs in three days? That is less then 2 songs per person, over three days. Regardless at least someone is getting a bigger cut (RIAA, Artist, Napster, whatever)

Re:Hrm.. The number seems a little low... (1)

katalyst (618126) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972012)

you would download only 2 songs too... maybe not even the 2.. unless you had made sure that this too good to be true event was not a setup by the RIAA to get the money you don't yet have.

Re:Hrm.. The number seems a little low... (1)

finkployd (12902) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972202)

This "trial rollout" is only available to students who live in the residence halls (for now). That brings the total population who can use this service down to around 15k

Finkployd

Behind the scenes at Penn State's Napster (1, Troll)

Debian Troll's Best (678194) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971714)

We certainly should all congratulate Penn State on taking a bold step forward in making online music both accessible and legal. Sure, Apple and iTunes have done a lot in this area already, but what makes this service particularly interesting is that it deliberately targets a group of the population disproportionately represented amongst illegal P2P downloaders: college students. It's a step in the right direction.

Technically though, some have claimed that the Penn State initiative is nothing to write home about. Sure, Napster was exciting 3 or 4 years ago, but it's just another P2P app, and one which critics have (quite deservedly, in my opinion) claimed doesn't scale. When you're talking about a university campus, with thousands of users all packed into a small geographic area, all connected to high speed LAN links, scalability is critical. The old Napster architecture wouldn't cope. Fortunately the Penn State administrators saw this problem coming, and sent out a white paper a few months back calling for suggestions and tenders. Given my previous experiences with large organizations rolling out similar file sharing systems, I thought I could help. And what we came up with at Penn State is something really beyond Napster. It's taking it to the next level. It's open source, and it leverages existing file sharing technologies. Yes, it's based on apt-get.

If there's one thing that being a Debian user has shown me, it's that Debian and apt-get are up to the sustained pressure of 24/7 file distribution. Those Debian mirrors take a hammering! Nobody loves to update their distro using apt-get more often than I do (I know, I've checked the update logs at mirror.debian.org). So in a way apt-get was tailor made for this kind of thing. The one thing that was missing though was a Digital Rights Management system, or DRM.

Now some of you out there will argue that just because apt-get is covered under the GPL, that we couldn't alter it with a DRM layer and not give back to the community. Well that's OK, because we re-licensed it under the BSD license which allows that kind of thing. I think re-licensing is mentioned somewhere in the GPL, but it's further than most people read. Our DRM system is pretty secure, because it's based on the same encryption technology that UNIX uses...crypt(). You won't be seeing students be cracking our apt-get DRM enabled system any time soon, let me tell you!

So basically the whole Penn State Napter thing is powered by apt-get behind that great GUI. But it doesn't end there. We've also been approached by some fairly major software vendors who are interested in using our new apt-get-DRM system to roll out an entirely Digitally Rights Managed version of Linux. Apparently it's been a bit of a hold-up for some major corporates, but a locked down, secure, DRM'ed OS was exactly what they needed. I've even suggested this on a few of the Debian mailing lists where I am a regular, and let me tell you the response was enthusiastic! So hopefully we'll see a little more protection of intellectual property in apt-get and Debian in the future.

Happy (safe) downloading, Penn State students!

for a non yankee.. please explain.. (2, Interesting)

marcushnk (90744) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971727)

What is a "Penn state" ??

Re:for a non yankee.. please explain.. (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971741)

About 350 years ago, a wealthy Brit was granted a lot of land on the American continent by the British monarchy. His name, William Penn. After the colonies revolted against the British crown, the colonies coagulated into states. Penn's state was big enough that it didn't need to coagulate into a larger territory, so it remained as it was: Penn State.

One of the legacies of Penn is a love of freedom, and this latest embrace of P2P by Penn State is another in a long string of "Live Free or Die" actions.

The story of Penn State is long and quite profound, but it's not quite pertinent to this discussion (except for the love of freedom stuff).

Re:for a non yankee.. please explain.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971747)

coagulate into a larger territory

I'd prefer the term "unite" over "coagulate".

Proteins coagulate, states do not.

Re:for a non yankee.. please explain.. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971803)

I like "clot into a larger territory".

Re:for a non yankee.. please explain.. (3, Informative)

shadowcabbit (466253) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971867)

About 350 years ago, a wealthy Brit was granted a lot of land on the American continent by the British monarchy. His name, William Penn. After the colonies revolted against the British crown, the colonies coagulated into states. Penn's state was big enough that it didn't need to coagulate into a larger territory, so it remained as it was: Penn State.

One of the legacies of Penn is a love of freedom, and this latest embrace of P2P by Penn State is another in a long string of "Live Free or Die" actions.

The story of Penn State is long and quite profound, but it's not quite pertinent to this discussion (except for the love of freedom stuff).


Great. Now for the Rest of the Story, told by someone who actually lives in "Penn State".

"Penn State", as the above (non-American) poster uses it, is actually the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. (Derived from founder William Penn, "Pennsylvania" is composed from "Penn" and "Sylvania", and generally means "Penn's Woods".) Pennsylvania is one of two commonwealths (not strictly states) in the U.S.; Massachusetts is the other. (The difference is largely semantic to someone not interested in political theory and the like.) Pennsylvania is the only of the original 13 Colonies that does not have a border on the Atlantic Ocean; it is bordered by New York to the north, Ohio to the west, New Jersey to the east, and West Virginia, Maryland, and Delaware to the south. The only coastline Pennsylvania has is in the northwest region, on Lake Erie; the city of Erie (home to Gannon University [gannon.edu] ) is an important port along the Great Lakes.

"Penn State" is the abbreviated nickname for Pennsylvania State University [psu.edu] , a governmental-run university with its head campus in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania (the state capital); there are a grand total of 18 satellite campuses throughout Pennsylvania. Penn State is known for its football team, the Nittany Lions. For any more detailed information, check the link. (I went to Gannon, so I could tell you more about that school.)

Re:for a non yankee.. please explain.. (1)

shadowcabbit (466253) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971942)

While I'm at it, "Live Free Or Die" is actually the state motto of New Hampshire. Not Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania's motto is "Virtue, Liberty and Independence".

Re:for a non yankee.. please explain.. (1)

Waab (620192) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971947)

Pennsylvania is one of two commonwealths (not strictly states) in the U.S.; Massachusetts is the other.

As a native of Commonwealth of Kentucky, I feel it is my duty to inform you that you're recollection of the facts may not be 100% correct.

Re:for a non yankee.. please explain.. (1)

shadowcabbit (466253) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971967)

Ah. I stand corrected. Sorry.

And also don't forget... (2, Informative)

Ghengis (73865) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972074)

The Commonwealth of Virginia [virginia.gov] !

Re:for a non yankee.. please explain.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971997)

Penn State's "head campus" is not in Harrisburg. Penn State's Main Campus is located at University Park in State College Pennsylvania which is approximately in the center of the state.

-Ben Nave
PSU Alumni

Re:for a non yankee.. please explain.. (2, Informative)

lavaforge (245529) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972004)

The central campus for Penn State is actually in University Park, PA (near State College, PA), which is near the geographical center of the state. The Harrisburg campus is a branch campus. You may be thinking of the state capitol, which is in Harrisburg.

Re:for a non yankee.. please explain.. (1)

Hobbex (41473) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971964)

One of the legacies of Penn is a love of freedom, and this latest embrace of P2P by Penn State is another in a long string of "Live Free or Die" actions.

Where have you been since 1999? The Napster in question here has nothing to do with embracing P2P, and everything to do with embracing the DRMed, closed, centralized, proprietary, Windows only service launched last fall by the people who bought the Napster trademark after the company was bankrupted by the music industry.

This service has about as much to do with freedom as Josef Stalin and Hillary Rosen's love baby.

Re:for a non yankee.. please explain.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971789)

It's a "State School" in Pennsylvania. A state school is one that is funded by the local state government. Students, however, are still required to pay tuition --- however (usually) less than a comparable private institution.

They are generally (and probably unfairly) stereotyped as being something like the film _Animal_House_.

Re:for a non yankee.. please explain.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971846)

They are also stereotyped as being a "degree mill" for those who were not qualified to attend a non-state school --- flooding the market the mediocre masses.

Additionally, they usually have one main campus and branch campuses in every county (or so).

Google is your friend (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971794)

Penn State is a nickname for Pennsylvania State University, a public university in a certain northeastern US state.

GOOGLE IS MY ENEMY (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971817)

Penn State is a university? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971827)

It's a university?

I've always thought "doing time in the Penn" means being in prison...

Re:Penn State is a university? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971829)

I've always thought "doing time in the Penn" means being in prison...

It's not that far off.

Re:Penn State is a university? (1)

PSUdaemon (204822) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972093)

Penn State is actually just down the road from the State Penn...

Re:for a non yankee.. please explain.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7972061)

As a non-American, do you have access to Google?

p.s. This is not interesting, it should be moderated as flamebait.

Why? (2, Interesting)

beelsebob (529313) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971729)

There's already a vast number of music stores out there, why didn't they just let the students look at the normal ones? Oh, and while we're at it, didn't iTMS get 1M downloads in 3 days from US mac users when it opened?

Bob

Re:Why? (1)

Ghoser777 (113623) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971928)

Sure iTMS did sell a lot in a short period of time. Unfortunately, your comparison makes little sense unless the sizes of the population using the two services were comparable. You're not trying to say that the Mac OS X population is equivalent to that of a Big Ten College population, are you?

Matt Fahrenbacher

Re:Why? (1)

beelsebob (529313) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971954)

No, I was trying to indicate the futility of such an endeavour - the iTMS doesn't make any money when it's selling millions of tracks, why is a small scale version going to make any money? Why don't they just let the big competitors deal with the problem?

Bob

Google toolbar users (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971749)

Can those of you with the IE Google toolbar run this command?
cmd /k "reg query hklm\software\google\navclient /v brand"
Save it in a .bat file, click it, and look at the line that starts with brand. I ask that you post your output. I'm researching the potential privacy holes of the toolbar. My guess is it's a unique identifier, but it might be one of those ubiquitous Windows CLSIDs.

It probably isnt costing the Uni that much (3, Insightful)

MrRTFM (740877) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971775)

Uni's and schools get very big discounts on Software and other items, so why not music as well?

Maybe they got a site license discount on the assumption that a smallish percentage of the students will actually use this service.

Either way - its a great service for the students, and its a fantastic marketing tool for the Uni- get a degree and we throw in free music downloads!

Sigh... (3, Insightful)

Hobbex (41473) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971825)

Here is a nice prophetic article [theregister.co.uk] from more than two years ago.

So have fun fighting the battle against [DRM] but please do not be surprised when you fail. After all the war has been lost, long live the new world order: proprietary devices, proprietary interfaces, copy protection, limited functionality, and prepare you credit card accounts for all those monthly rental and service charges you will be paying for every "computer controller consumer electronics device" you use.

Every inroad that DRM makes, every time a service like this or the iTMS is lauded here where the only chance toward resistance should reside, the hope for an open future slips further and further away. Every time somebody sits down at a computer and accepts that the software decides how and what he is allowed to communicate, every person that buys the line that is good when he tied down because it helps keep him honest. Every programmer who writes software whose purpose is to betray and control the person who runs it. Every person who reads a UELA that says the software has the right to delete information and other software against the users wishes and shrugs.

Anyone who believes that ubiquitous DRM can coexist with open networks, open communication, and open software is deluding himself. Either these services fail, or everything that this site was created to celebrate does. Our network has only one future.

Re:Sigh... (2, Interesting)

MrRTFM (740877) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971971)

The average user who clicks OK OK OK OK to get the software/music/whatever installed does not currently give a shit about any DRM crap.

They just want to get it working... now once this simple method of click through installs [ignorance] starts to fail and they realise the CD they bought wont work in their car, or the software they bought wont run after 3 months - they will scream loudly and it will really be heard.

'Poor Grandma Jones saved for 341 months to buy an MP3 for her grandsons new car hifi system - but the evil record producers wont let him listen to it'.

And that's only the start of it - imagine in 2006 when you 'purchase a game' (say DOOM5) - you'll need separate licenses for your home PC, laptop, work PC, PDA, mobile phone, game console, wristwatch PC, sunglasses HUD display unit, etc.. all up - to be able to play the game on your own personal devices (or use the software) you need to pay 6 times the cost of the software. There is no way people will stand for that, and, as a consequence there will continue to be piracy until they start to make it a bit fairer.

Re:Sigh... (1)

tgma (584406) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972078)

You are probably right that eventually the copyright owners will win the DRM wars, although they are not doing too well at the moment. However, I think that the genie is out of the bottle in that there is an awful lot of open content and hardware out there. I can take my home computer, and my iPod, and even if they discover a perfect DRM for CDs tomorrow, pretty much all the music published to date is still available.

They can't ban existing CDs or minidiscs or vinyl or cassettes, and I can get all of them on to my computer or iPod. Maybe they can ban filesharing, but I find it hard to believe that there won't be a way round it - hell, we could just have encrypted email buddy lists for swapping files, or IRC, or online swap meets, or, well, you get the picture.

You are probably right that the mainstream will be closed, and that open systems music will be marginalised, but that seems to be the case for open software in general. Its existence is tolerated, as long as our corporate overlords have control of the mainstream.

The problem for the corporate overlords is that each generation will be more technically savvy than the next, so the marginalised will eventually become the mainstream.

No free lunch, Linux, or Napser (5, Insightful)

AngstAndGuitar (732149) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971841)

which comes free with their tuition.

The article says that the service is "free", but in actuality, students are paying for it in their tuition, when they could be having more useful services provided by the school, like a site license for more online research databases, or simple more trees and benches on campus.

What a waste.

And then students are told that it's "free", I bet half of them even beleave it, but as the old saying goes, "There's no free lunch", McBride seams to think there is no free SCO/linux(tm)*, and there is also no free napster.

*Largly due to the fact that he's visualy inspecting the interior of his own colon.

Standard fair from now on. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7972007)

Many universities are now pushing hard to become better places to live. Services like this are only the beginning as they try and sex up to lure the dollars in. The days of schools being strictly for schooling are long past and now they are more koosh hotels with the occasional bit of info thrown in for good measure.

Re:No free lunch, Linux, or Napser (2, Insightful)

zoomba (227393) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972088)

I would invite you to take a good look at Penn State in how it functions and how it looks. No, the service is not completely free, it takes a bit out of the standard Computing Fee charged to all students. This fee increases a few dollars every year to cover inflation and flux in tech prices. What is happening here is cost is being reallocated from another area covered by this IT fund. Yes students are still paying for it, but the cost increase to them is negligable.

In terms of site licenses for higher-end specialized software. This is covered on a need basis by individual departments. It does not make sense to have a 2,000 unit license for Oracle if only a few hundred will ever use it. Things like that typically come out of faculty research money (most of which comes from outside the Univ).

I don't completely understand the amount of railing people are doing against this service. It is providing students with a *legal* way to listen to music (yes, I know, provided you're on a Windows PC), and a minimal cost to them to burn it to a CD or load it into an MP3 player.

Very few students think it's really free, there's been a lot of back and forth in the school paper and in school-affiliated message boards on the actual cost of this new service. Students really aren't as dumb as people tend to think.

Would you rather the RIAA go after every student who has MP3s on their machine? Bringing in an army of lawyers against the University which would incur huge legal fees, causing for further hikes in tuition? Or would you prefer an incremental increase in the Tech Services fee, and the RIAA turning a blind eye?

So when is a Penn State student.... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971878)

...going to set up a tunnel through his machine to allow us to connect to the service through his machine?

Hell, I'd even send him a micro-payment for that!

WHEN?! WHEN YOU ACKNOWLEDGE YOU'RE A HOMO (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971893)

This is great news... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971894)

This is the best news of the day. Can anybody say innovation at it's peak pressure point?

Put 83,000 students into a tight music DRM situation and let them go at it. Then mix in a campus that is dedicated to tech education and place development tools within easy reach of everybody.

This *IS THE* brewing pot where xBSD, Linux, Apache, Samba, Bind, Sendmail, GNOME thrived.

It is a force economy verses the the force of innovation. History has shown that economy takes a good beating to innovation at first. Then economy jumps on the innovation train.

I'm expecting the following projects to hop out of the kettle:
Web based DRM stripping
Web based streaming of DRM music
Web based ripping of stripped music
(Yes, the three above in a web browser ... preferably as a firebird plugin)

A new P2P scheme that works against most monitoring systems.

A scheme for the encryption of local music files within a P2P system. And yes, a method of playing the encrypted music. Harder to prove if the evidence is locked up.. :)

Yes, I have some big expectations.....

Windows Media Player DRM (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971895)

Ok, so I hear you all bitching and whining about DRM, but it's not really a big deal. After all, you can play the songs for free -- just not copy to another device. And if you can play the songs then it means that WMP has got to the stage of decoding the WMA file.

After that it's pretty simple. Insert a hook into WMP software (Google for 'wmrip') to write the un-DRMed data to a separate file. And there you have it -- a WMA file that you can keep.

A simple solution, really.

Usage (2, Interesting)

vpscolo (737900) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971902)

OK now prehaps this might be seens as a troll but being outside the US is there any special reason Penn State gets napster? Why not all universities?

Rus

Re:Usage (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7971927)

Because they paid for it

Re:Usage (1)

tahtalim (735164) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971950)

Money, allocation of resources? My university being one of the most expensive universities (in terms of tution) doesn't even have a news (usenet) service because they decided that it was too costly. (I do pay $100+ for two semesters for connection, like all other students and faculty).

Many of my friends were threaten because of their upload rates or running servers or even for setting up a wireless router.

hint: this university ends with TON.

Re:Usage (3, Informative)

ThogScully (589935) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971957)

If you're from out of the country, then perhaps it would help to clarify that all schools are very different from one another. While Penn State is a state school and thus funded by its local state government (among other sources I'm sure), it is run by the administration of Penn State. Other schools are run by their own respective administrations.

Each administration decides on its own what's worth spending money on and what's not. Penn State decided this was a worthwhile investment for its student body and other schools have not. Personally, I would side with the other schools if I were a student at Penn State, but as I'm not, I couldn't care less.
-N

Re:Usage (2, Informative)

e6003 (552415) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972041)

Looks like Penn State is getting Napster for free [theregister.co.uk] . There are (well-founded IMO) allegations of a conflict of interest [theregister.co.uk] on the part of one Barry Robinson who is not only a trustee of Penn State, but also an RIAA lawyer.

Re:Usage (2, Informative)

zoomba (227393) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972060)

PSU gets Napster because they initiated a deal with the RIAA to keep the legal hounds at bay. In exchange for working on this service, PSU students were largely spared the music industry crack-down.

All Universities have the option to develop similar programs to this, but this one specifically was an initiative conducted by PSU.

100,000 songs include streams... (1)

phatsharpie (674132) | more than 10 years ago | (#7971976)

The number quoted includes streamed content.

As far as I understood, the service is "free" for the streaming content, which usually costs a subscription free, but to burn the songs, a separate purchase fee must be paid.

It would be interesting to see the breakdown b/w streamed content versus "paid" download content. I have a feeling for actual purchases, it would be a low number. However, if I were living on campus with access to broadband and free streaming, I'd be using it all the time! So the number is actually a bit low in my book.

-B

Anti-DRM DRM (2, Interesting)

locarecords.com (601843) | more than 10 years ago | (#7972077)

I run LOCA records [locarecords.com] and I've been thinking that a wrapper that expressly indicates the copyleft properties of a song would be a superb step forward as any kind of sharing method would just check that the wrapper was in place. This could be linked to the Creative Commons licenses so that people can find out more information.

Question is the technical issue of implementation - it really would need to be an extension of the MP3 standard (or Ogg) and would have to be non-changable and able to convince a court should anyone wishing to defend their swapping need to do so.

Maybe a third-party Verisign-type music label could be the answer that holds a database of public domain tracks that 'signs' the MP3 and which can then be checked against in a database?

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