ROCKERS ‘SPRING INTO ACTION OVER NAPSTER

The rockers are the first band to make money from the under-fire software provider's brand...

THE OFFSPRING have started selling unofficial Napster merchandise via their website, [url=]www.offspring.com.

This makes The Offspring the first band to make money from the Napster brand – even Napster don’t sell merchandise via their own site. However, The Offspring are selling Baseball caps and T-shirts bearing the Napster logo for $10, as well as Napster stickers for $1.

A source close to The Offspring told US website [url=]www.rollingstone.com: “It isn’t about making money. In typical Offspring fashion, they think it’s funny to fuck with people. They think Napster‘s cool and want to see how cool they (really) are.”

The Offspring have always been firm supporters of Napster and MP3 technology. In a statement posted on their official website, the band claim to “view MP3 technology and programs such as Napster as being a vital and necessary means to promote music and foster better relationships with our fans. The Offspring are…committed to developing the best possible Internet presence that promotes The Offspring‘s music and helps us stay in touch with the people who provide us with our livelihood, our devoted fans.”

The band also claim they will make exclusive MP3 tracks available via their site in future weeks.

As previously reported on nme.com, Napster is facing legal action from artists including Metallica and Dr Dre, who believe Napster technology is violating their copyright.

Other artists who have spoken out in favour of Napster and MP3 technology include Limp Bizkit, Cypress Hill, Courtney Love, Public Enemy, Smashing Pumpkins and Blur. See next week’s NME for a full report on the Napster debate.