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The NAPSTER Controversy

Date: Jan 23 2001


1. Learn Vocabulary - Learn some new vocabulary before you start the lesson.

2. Read and Prepare - Read the introduction and prepare to hear the audio.

The thing that’s awesome about Napster is there’s
any song you want on demand. So, you know, I was
just thinking about my favorite song when I was, like, I
don’t know in 5th grade or 6th grade or 7th grade was
El Debarge (laughter) Rhythm of the Night. And you
know it’s like that’s what’s so cool is you don’t have to
go out and buy that album. I just was like, type it in,
you know El Debarge and there it was. And 30
seconds later I had it and I was playing it. So, it’s like
the on-demand music is so cool and I can continue to
play it forever now. And I can even put it on a CD if I
want to. So, but the music I usually download is just
like, you know I go, “Well Green Day just came out
with a new album. I’ll just download all the songs and
then, you know, order a percent of the artists that I


1. Study - Read the dialog again to see how the vocab words are used.

So you go to the… uh, like in that case you’d go to
Green Day’s web site and see what the titles of all the
songs are and then you’d go to Napster’s and punch in
all those titles?
Yeah, that’s what I usually do. Or I go to CDNOW,
‘cause you can get any CD and CDNOW, so I just type
in the artist. Like, I did that for Bob Dylan recently. I
was like, “I need a Bob Dylan album.” So I just went
to… chose an album at CDNOW and searched for all
the songs, and then I have it.
Yeah, I don’t think Napster is as popular in Europe
because I can’t get ahold of all the Venga Boys
songs… (laughter)


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Napster is a company that recently got into a lot for trouble for making it easy for computer users to share songs with each other. Napster created a software program that faciliates the exchange of music files on the internet. So, any person can copy a song from a CD onto their computer and then another person can copy that song for free.
Napster was recently sued by a group of record companies. But, in that time a number of other companies like Napster have sprouted up leaving
people to wonder if the genie is out of the bottle.
They caused quite a stir with record companies and musicians because many of them considered the exchange of songs stealing. However, some artists think that music should be more freely exchanged.
Courtney Love, The Offspring, Michael Stipe (R.E.M.), and Limp Bizkit all support Napster, but bands like Metallica are against it.
Artists against it are worried that they won’t get paid for the work they produce. But, on the other hand record sales have been up dramatically
since Napster has been around and some say that allowing users to download free music actually encourages people to buy more CDs.
What do you think of Napster? Do you think anyone should be allowed to download music for free or should they have to pay? What if you were an artist? Have you ever used Napster or programs like it? Come to the MUSIC MIX message board and let us know how you feel.
- Migs


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