Judge in Napster Case Finds in Favour of Music Companies

"Napster is enjoined from doing the acts I've just described," Judge Patel said.

By midnight on Friday Pacific Time, Napster will have to stop putting up the music companies' copyrighted material on its Web site, she ruled. Throughout the hearing, however, Napster insisted that the identification of material in relation to a specific copyright holder was impossible. In case of possible compensation due to Napster, Patel ordered the music companies to pay a US$5 million bond.

The judge said the number of MP3 files that have already been downloaded from Napster's site in addition to the number of current Napster users presented a significant enough threat of irreparable harm to the music companies. She added that she felt that it was time for an injunction at this point.

Patel cited as evidence for her reasoning estimates that as much as 80 percent of the material on Napster's site may be copyrighted as well as the music distribution company's own predictions that it might have as many as 70 million users by the end of 2000.

In its defense earlier Wednesday, Napster suggested that the technology companies responsible for creating MP3 in the first place, should really be taken to task. Napster had merely taken advantage of the available technology, the company's lawyers said. "It's hard sometimes to make a neat fit," Patel said in relation to Napster's line of defense.

However, the judge said that Napster hadn't seemed to try as hard as it could to identify people pirating material. More damning in her opinion was the company's provision of software and a search engine as a means to enable music distribution, she added.

"It's kind of like becoming an orphan by your own hand" and then asking the court for help," Patel said. She drew attention to Napster memos that showed the company was keen to make money off of its music distribution site from the start of its operations.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Ashlee Vance

PC World
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?