NAPSTER UNDER FRESH ATTACK

A judge describes the amount of copyrighted songs still abailable on the file-sharing network's system as "disgraceful"...

NAPSTER are facing fresh criticism in the US courts, with a judge describing the amount of copyrighted songs still available on its service as “disgraceful”.

Yesterday, (April 10), a court hearing took place in San Francisco to discuss how well Napster are complying with the order to filter copyrighted material from its service.

Judge Marilyn Hall Patel, who originally ordered the injunction, was told that many files which Napster had been ordered to filter out were still available.

According to MTV news, referring to the amount of copyrighted songs still available on the controversial file-sharing network, Patel said: “This is disgraceful that there are this many on the system.”

She added: “Maybe the system needs to be shut down…Think about it exponentially – if you had a thousand of these files out there yesterday, think of how many will pop up in the future.”

Record labels were required to provide Napster with the filenames of the MP3s it wants removed. Following the notification of the filenames, Napster then had three days to remove the offending material.

Napster representatives insisted they are blocking over 1.3 billion copyrighted files per day. The Recording Industry Association Of America (RIAA) have requested Napster radically change their filtering strategy to a “filter-in” system, whereby users would only be able to download MP3 files that are authorised to be there.

Following the hearing, RIAA Senior Executive Vice President Cary Sherman issued a statement.

It said: “Today’s hearing reflects Judge Patel’s determination to ensure that the Court’s injunction is obeyed and that Napster’s infringing conduct comes to an end…we are confident that the Court will make the injunction effective.

“From our perspective, what’s important now is the continuing stream of new deals being announced by our companies to bring innovative, online subscription services to consumers. Napster would do well to do whatever it takes to come into compliance, and then turn their full energies into launching a new, legitimate business.”