Napster to filter out thousands of copyrighted songs
March 2, 2001 3:56 PM   Subscribe

Napster to filter out thousands of copyrighted songs - perhaps even a million tracks will be weeded out of the system by next week in an effort to appease the major labels and prevent shutdown. Expect a lot of l33t track naming from the haX0rz and for the RIAA to say "it's simply not good enough!"
posted by tobyslater (22 comments total)
Filtering out copyrighted songs... great!
That just leaves us with... err... well, get back to me on that one.

With a system based on having to already know the name of the song or artist, how can you find someone you've never heard of before? Dumb luck?

This pretty much equals death for Napster.
posted by teradome at 4:03 PM on March 2, 2001

"Expect a lot of l33t track naming from the haX0rz"

for this to happen we need some standard l33t speak so people know what to type in, right?
posted by howa2396 at 4:07 PM on March 2, 2001

Someone's got to make a batch file renamer, and then a winamp plugin to "decrypt" the "real" names of everything in your player. If one person decides on the library, it might just stay under napster's radar.... for about a day.
posted by mathowie at 4:11 PM on March 2, 2001

Wasn't the epicenter of Napster's arguments in court up until now that there was no way to filter? Nice to have proof that the entire thing was about what they could make people believe rather than what they knew to be true.
posted by delfuego at 4:28 PM on March 2, 2001

IIRC, the argument was that creating a filter for copyrighted material or policing it by human means was too much work, and the company would go under trying to develop and maintain these methods of doing things.

But yeah, it's kind of weird that since they announced deals with record companies, they suddenly have the tech and time to create this.
posted by mathowie at 4:31 PM on March 2, 2001

wait a minute. apparently there are only about 6000 songs that will get filtered out? that's not many at all. do they plan to just filter out the top 600 most popular (i.e. best-selling) albums?
posted by gluechunk at 4:47 PM on March 2, 2001

Are the filters they're talking about basically referring to songs that the companies are still making a lot of money from currently? (Like, if I do a search for "Land of the Lost TV Theme" - it most likely WON'T be filtered out even if it IS copyright protected? *grin*)
posted by thunder at 5:11 PM on March 2, 2001

And how the hell do they mean to charge "an additional fee to burn CDs and to transfer their music to portable devices"?
posted by fable at 5:12 PM on March 2, 2001

Slightly off-topic, but ... I wonder if anyone besides me would feel slightly relieved if Napster went away. I'll always defend it in principle, but thanks to Napster I've replaced actually listening to music with acquiring it; replaced stretching out, closing my eyes and listening to an LP with back-aching hours in front of a monitor.

Half of what I've downloaded I haven't even listened to, and 90% of the remainder I've listened to once. I think I'd appreciate being forced to fall back on my impoverished life of hundreds of LPs and CDs.
posted by argybarg at 5:18 PM on March 2, 2001

I am guessing that they are putting forth this filtering idea so that it can be easily circumvented unminutes, proving their point about the nonviability of filtering.
posted by donkeymon at 6:04 PM on March 2, 2001

I agree argybarg. While I really like being able to find good new music, and check out stuff that before Napster I could only read reviews of, I tend to build up a backlog of music that I never really get around to listening to. Then, when I buy the albums I never really get to give them the time I'd like to listen to and absorb them, because I'm back on Napster getting more new stuff. Still, even without Napster there just isn't enough time to listen to all the music I'd like to. Oh well. I will definitely miss the convenience of hearing about some obscure indie band, and being able to grab a few tracks right then and there to see what I think.
posted by shinji_ikari at 6:41 PM on March 2, 2001

NOOOOOOOOO. i'm going to install napster at work, where i can use the broadband, and burn a cd. or ten. just for long enough to get a lot more songs.

posted by sugarfish at 8:01 PM on March 2, 2001

Since I cant use napster on the school's network (its only a 33.6 connection from my home), I use audiogalaxy. I think it rocks. i usually get kick ass transfer rates (2.5-3.5kbs), and i can resume downloads from any person, not just the person i began the d/l from. I've d/l over 300 mb of stuff in the past month. With all the focus on napster, is the RIAA forgeting about the smaller players? (at least for now?)
posted by ewwgene at 8:36 PM on March 2, 2001

Let's hope that the crazy underground music collectors aren't forgetting about the other players, which have remained gloriously inconspicuous during this tragic end to a golden age.
posted by ed at 10:18 PM on March 2, 2001

I figured everyone would just use some renamer to make all the song names go backwards. Easy enough, right?

Hell, people mislabel every song that isn't spelled wrong anyway, so that list is going to have to put through some kind of dyslexia machine....
posted by anildash at 11:51 PM on March 2, 2001

My first instinctive thought was to create some kind of song-mapping system, some kind of encryption to jumble the ID3 tags, but I'm sure that's already been thought of and has been put into effect by someone much more dedicated than I.
posted by Succa at 1:35 AM on March 3, 2001

hmm. if i were a programmer, i would suggest that the answer lies in some kind of clever CDDB development, but I'm not so that's about as far as that goes.
posted by Sapphireblue at 6:49 AM on March 3, 2001

Here is a good read about what happens if napster goes away. Very interesting look. ie By 2004, it was illegal to build speakers that could respond to old-fashioned analog inputs. Instead, manufacturers made speakers that responded to digital inputs so they could play only music authorized to be heard at a given time and place.
posted by jamescblack at 11:10 AM on March 3, 2001

For a community that rails against people stealing website designs . . .

posted by fpatrick at 1:34 PM on March 3, 2001

Don't confuse your terms. "Stealing" a website means passing it off as your own work. Plagiarizing.
"Stealing" (as they call it) an mp3 means copying a stream of bits from one location to another, without misrepresenting the origin (I'd think that's usually the case? :)
Not at all the same thing. By the second definition, the one being applied to music, the very act of viewing a web page is "stealing."
posted by sonofsamiam at 1:38 PM on March 3, 2001

Stealing is an issue of permission for the use in question. Posting a page on the Web gives implicit permission to make a copy for display, since the Web is useless otherwise. The two uses of "stealing" are identical in meaning: both involve using someone else's property for a purpose they did not authorize.
posted by kindall at 2:29 PM on March 3, 2001

The two uses of "stealing" are identical in meaning: both involve using someone else's property for a purpose they did not authorize.

The nicest thing about Napster's impending demise is that it will put an end to endless hyperbole on both sides of the issue. If anyone's capable of making a subtle argument for or against Napster, I haven't read it in the last six months.
posted by rcade at 4:42 PM on March 4, 2001

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