Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Five years on

With version 2.0 Napster almost already over, bar the dwindling away to nothingness, it's something of a surprise to discover the legal battles over the original Napster have only now been settled. EMI have finally settled with Bertelsmann AG. Back in 2002, BAG was the parent of BMG records, and it bought pirate-era Napster with the aim of turning it into some sort of legitimate business. In effect, it purchased a rubbish cat logo, a brand name and a heap of lawsuits.

Now, the last of these have been settled, and EMI is keen to put the distant past behind it:

"We can now put this matter behind us and continue to pursue the development of new legitimate digital music business models."

There's something almost heartbreaking about EMI closing down a lawsuit it embarked on in 2003 against a long-defunct peer-to-peer network and seeing it as part of its 2007 digital strategy.