Table of content Table of content pages Introduction
1 The internet piracy Napster case and other peer to peer system
1-3 What should be done to stop internet piracy or make it useful for companies 3-4
5 INTRODUCTION During the year 2000 a very big controversial case was judged in the northern district court of California in the united state of America . several recording companies were suing a company known as Napster for contributory and vicarious copyright infringement under the US digital millennium copyright act (DMCA). Napster was created by Shawn fanning and Sean parker in 1999.
It was basically a peer to peer system, a peer to peer system is a system which allows internet users to share directly files rather than use a website or a directory in the case of Napster it was a peer to peer system specializes only on mp3 music. This system made it easy for user to download copies of songs that were otherwise very difficult to obtain. This system was a real problem for the recording company because people obtained latest songs without spending any money and that was a huge lost for the artist and the recording companies that what leads the Napster case to the court.
A copyright refers to the laws that regulate the use of the work of a creator such as an artist or an author. This includes copying, distributing, altering and displaying creative, literary and other types of work. Unless written on a contract, the author of a work detains the copyright of his work. Copyright infringement is the unauthorized or unlicensed copying of a work subject to copyright and that is what Napster have been accused of.
Napster defence was based on the fact that it was just a peer to peer system so its role was just to link users who wanted to share songs and that they did not stock any music in their system so they were not responsible for copyright infringement even with this argument Napster lost the case and shut down in 2001. The Napster case shows how it is easy nowadays to access to music illegally through the internet without spending any money. The real question here is how to stop this type of activity, what should be employed to stop them and try to keep the internet more secure for the copyright holders.
THE INTERNET PIRACY NAPSTER CASE AND OTHER PEER TO PEER SYSTEM Piracy is acquired something illegally. In this case it is about acquired illegally an intellectual property. An intellectual property is a skill or knowledge owned by an individual. We can determine three types of intellectual the first one is creative works, including music, written material, movies, and software, which are protected by copyright law; the second one is inventions, which are protected by patent law; and the third one is brand-name products, which are protected by trademarks.
Most of the problems about piracy have to do with the difference between intellectual and physical property. A CD, for example, is a physical property, but the songs on the CD are intellectual property. A customer in a record store can purchase a CD, but someone else still owns—or more precisely, has the copyright to—the songs on the CD. Piracy is a huge issue for the entertainment and software companies and usually piracy involves violation of the copyright law. Copyright is a legal right that protects creative works from being reproduced, performed, or disseminated without permission of the copyright owner.
Essentially, a copyright gives its owner the exclusive right to make copies of the material in question. Physical piracy involves the copying and the sale of all sort of hard copy like CD, DVD, or videotapes. It is a huge lost for the industry of music over $4 billion a year in the entire world and the film industry as well more than $3. 5 billion. These numbers do not factor in the growing (and difficult to measure) problem of Internet piracy, in which music and movies are transferred to digital format and copies are made of the resulting computer file. Journalist Charles C.
Mann explains why Internet piracy has the potential to be vastly more damaging to copyright industries than does physical piracy: To make and distribute a dozen copies of a videotaped film requires at least two videocassette recorders, a dozen tapes, padded envelopes and postage, and considerable patience. And because the copies are tapes of tapes, the quality suffers. But if the film has been digitized into a computer file, it can be E-mailed to millions of people in minutes; because strings of zeroes and ones can be reproduced with absolute fidelity, the copies are perfect.
And online pirates have no development costs—they don’t even have to pay for paper or blank cassettes—so they don’t really have a bottom line. Internet piracy was not a problem until the Napster gained the attention in 1999. Napster was created by a college student names Shawn fanning in 1999 it was a service which enable users to share digital music files over the internet. This system used a technology called peer-to-peer network. Peer-to-peer network help the users to link their computers to others computers over the network and share files.
Users linked to Napster were able to share files with other and download music from almost any other computer present on the network. Napster claimed to have over 20 million users in July 2000, all of them making copies of each others’ music. By that time, Napster became the centre of a controversy about online file sharing. Part of Napster’s appeal was intertwined with the novelty of digital music: Many technically inclined people enjoyed using computer programs to organize their music collections and also liked being able to “burn” their own CD mixes.
But the truly unprecedented aspect of Napster was that it gave users convenient access to a seemingly unlimited selection of music—for free. A lot of fans and users of Napster did not consider the download of music as piracy; they said that Napster was just helping them to share files and not steal them. They also stated that Napster permitted to independent musician to become well known. A teenager quoted in a June 2000 Newsweek feature on Napster summed up the typical view: “People don’t think it’s anything bad. . . . Or think about it at all. Meanwhile, the creators of Napster claimed that they were not responsible for what users did with their software. The music industry disagreed. “What Napster is doing threatens legitimate E-commerce models and is legally and morally wrong,” said Hilary Rosen, then-president of the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), the trade group that represents the U. S. music industry. Several record labels filed suit against Napster in December 1999, and after months of hearings, Napster was eventually shut down in July 2001. To the frustration of the music industry, other file-sharing services emerged to take Napster’s place. ome did not get the success of Napster but others like such as Scour, Grokster, Morpheus, and Audio galaxy, were targeted by copyright-infringement lawsuits. In late 2003 one of the most popular file-sharing services was Kazaa. Although Kazaa and other file-sharing services allow users to share movie files and software as well as music, the music industry has led the fight against online file sharing. The RIAA and other organizations representing the music industry blame online file sharing for the 26 percent fall in global CD sales that occurred between 1999 and 2003.
Many factors, including a sluggish economy and a lack of exciting pop music releases may be responsible for the decline, but as reporters Kenneth Terrell and Seth Rosen note, “digital piracy undoubtedly plays a role. ” Kazaa is directed by Sharman Networks which is locates on Vanuatu a south pacific island and is thus less bound by U. S laws. Kazaa and others like him use decentralized peer-to-peer networks than Napster did and therefore are more difficult to eliminate they can’t be stopped by just closing some servers like they did for Napster.
Because of that the music companies focus now on individual file sharer than the peer to peer networks they use. In April 2003, for example, the recording industry sued four university students in federal court, accusing them of making thousands of songs available online for illegal downloading over P2P networks. The RIAA took a much larger step in September 2003, when it filed lawsuits against hundreds of Kazaa users, threatening them with penalties of thousands of dollars per copyrighted work that was shared online. We’ve been telling people for a long time that file sharing copyrighted music is illegal, that you are not anonymous when you do it, and that engaging in it can have real consequences,” said RIAA president Cary Sherman. She added, “Nobody likes playing the heavy and having to resort to litigation, but when your product is being regularly stolen, there comes a time when you have to take appropriate action. ” The RIAA proposed to drop the lawsuits if the accused promised to stop sharing copyrighted music online. he file of these lawsuits was possible because of The June 2003 court ruling that said that Internet service providers (ISPs) were legally obligated to reveal the names of alleged file sharers. But in December 2003 the U. S Court of appeals for the district of Columbia circuit change the ruling saying that ISP are not forced to reveal the identities of their customers. However the ruling does not make file sharing legal but seriously stop the music companies’ of targeting individual file sharers. WHAT SHOULD BE DONE TO STOP THE INTERNET PIRACY OR TO MAKE IT USEFUL FOR THE COMPANIES.
Many critics of the music industry’s hard-line stance against online file sharing have argued that record companies need to embrace digital music. Some legal online store like Itunes started to sell song and many people buy these song this suggest many people are ready to pay for the services these companies offer. Digital music sales may therefore offer a partial fix for the music industry’s woes. However, despite the efforts to fight it and the alternatives that are being offered, online file sharing remains rampant. An estimated 2. billion music files are downloaded through P2P networks each month, and more than four hundred thousand movies are downloaded each day. These figures will probably rise as computers become more powerful and broadband Internet access becomes more widespread. The augmentation on file sharing on the internet show how new technologies bring huge issues for copyright law. With the internet and the new computers information can now circulate easily than before, but all the copyright system depends of the ability from the copyright holders to control the transmission of information principally control who can access and use their work.
The defender of internet file sharing think that since internet completely changed the access to information the law need to change as well. John Perry Barlow, a cofounder of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, has argued that “copyright’s not about creation, which will happen anyway—it’s about distribution. ” Applying this view to online music sharing, a few defenders of online sharing files say that copyright law is not designed to protect musicians because these one do not spend a lot of money to create song ,but copyright law serve record companies, who invest a lot of money to produce thousands of CDs.
Record companies, according to this logic, benefit society by helping to distribute creators’ work, and the law should enable them to make a profit in doing so. But, the argument goes, since the Internet has made transmitting information almost free and thus made CDs largely unnecessary as a means of distributing music, record companies are no longer necessary—and neither are the laws that make copying songs illegal. CONCLUSION
The idea that the internet made or will make copyright law unnecessary is very present nowadays especially with the venue of the online sharing system if some people think this practice should be banned other think that the recording companies should integrated this system and make it profitable for them and it was the case for apple with the iTunes system, however piracy is still present and continue to grow so the real issue here is to find an effective solution to protect intellectual or other properties because at the moment it is not the case. eferences www. internet-law-library. com www. findlaw. com law and internet third edition, by Lilian Edwards and Charlotte Waelde, 2009