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February 12, 2001 - Image 2

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2001-02-12

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2A -The Michigan Daily - Monday, February 12, 2001


Ruling in N
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Major record labels
hope today's long-awaited appellate court ruling in
their case against Napster Inc. will force millions of
computer users to pay for music the online music
swapping service has allowed them to get for free.
But if Napster wins, the ruling could unleash any
number of other ventures that have been waiting for
guidance on whether a "personal use" exception to
copyright law allows or prohibits trading songs over
the Internet.
Even if Napster loses, the technology it introduced
is here to stay, particularly in an industry that both
loathes and loves the idea of getting music to con-
sumers via the Internet and is developing a range of
pay-for-play schemes.
"Monday's decision may finally clear the way for
the legitimate online marketplace to thrive in an
environment that encourages both creativity and a
respect for copyright," Hilary Rosen, president of the
Recording Industry Association of America, said in
a statement Friday.
The five largest record labels -- Sony, Warner,

apster appe
BMG, EMI and Universal - sued as soon as the Red-
wood City-based service took off, saying it could rob
them of billions of dollars in profits.
The issue before the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of
Appeals is whether to uphold U.S. District Judge Mari-
lyn Hall Patel's injunction ordering Napster to shut
down pending a trial on the music industry lawsuit. The
injunction was stayed pending the 9th Circuit review.
But the three-judge appellate panel also could rule
more broadly, describing how copyright law should
apply to emerging technologies that make it more diffi-
cult to control and profit from the distribution of music,
software, books, movies and other creative content.
U.S. copyright law includes a "doctrine of fair use"
which allows copies to be made and used without per-
mission if the copying is for a nonprofit purpose, and
won't cause the creative content to lose value in the
The question is whether it is personal use when
Napster users collectively make millions of music files
available for free to anyone else with a computer and a

al expected
In May 1999, Napster founder Shawn Fanning
released software that made it easy for personal
computer users to locate and trade songs they had
stored as computer files in the mp3 format, which
crunches digital recordings down to manageable
lengths without sacrificing quality.
The concept of "peer-to-peer" song trading quickly
proved too popular to contain. As Napster users grew
by the millions, other file-sharing programs also
popped up, such as Gnutella and Freenet. And the
labels themselves are looking to use the same technol-
ogy, only with paying subscribers and secure digital
formats that prevent copying.
Since the appellate judges began deliberating in
October, Napster has made agreements with former
business foes like Bertelsmann AG, the parent com-
pany of the BMG music unit. The German media
giant has promised much-needed capital if Napster
switches to a subscription-based service that pays
artists' royalties.
The other four major labels are holding out for
Napster's demise.

Clinton could face new impeachment
Former President Clinton could face a fresh impeachment inquiry as a result
of his last-minute pardon of fugitive financier Marc Rich, a senior Republican
said yesterday.
Sen. Arlen Specter, a senior member of the Judiciary Committee and a form
Philadelphia prosecutor, did not specify what specific charges Clinton mighW
face. But he said that based on his legal research, he believed a former president
"technically could still be impeached."
Replied a Clinton spokeswoman: "Give me a break."
Legal experts were divided on whether the Constitution allows Congress to
pursue an impeachment case - either over a president's use of his pardon power
or against a president who has left office.
A Senate Republican leader, Oklahoma's Don Nickles, rejected the idea of a
new impeachment case against Clinton, but raised the possibility of using other
methods to reduce the former president's pension, office rent allowance and
other administrative expenses.
Specter, appearing on "Fox News Sunday," said, "I'm not suggesting that
should be done, but President Clinton technically could still be impeached."
added, "I don't think that trial would take too long."
Bush focuses on quality of life in militr
Improving quality of life in the military is the Bush administration's first order
of business as it conducts its top-to-bottom armed services review, Defense Sec-
retary Donald H. Rumsfeld said yesterday.
"I think the focus has to be on quality of life for the people," Rumsfeld said
"Fox News Sunday." "Without the men and women that we're able to attract a
retain to man the forces, then we really don't have a national defense, so that has
to be the first focus"
The comments opened a week that Bush has devoted to national security, and
came on the eve of his visit an Army base in Georgia to bolster what he has warned
is sagging military morale. During the campaign, Bush said equipment shortages,
poor housing and pay and unfocused, "overextended" missions were eroding
At Bush's direction, Rumsfeld has undertaken a "force structure review"of the
Pentagon, and the administration will rely on that examination as it sets defense
spending priorities. The defense secretary said on ABC's "This Week" that he
remains convinced a defense budget increase is necessary.

Northwest mechanics threaten to strike

Leaders of the mechanics union at
Northwest Airlines cried foul this
weekend over their treatment by feder-
al mediators and vowed to prepare for
a strike regardless of President Bush's
intent to stop one.
The National Mediation Board over-
saw more than 100 days of negotiations
but decided the talks between North-
west and the Aircraft Mechanics Frater-

nal Association were deadlocked. The
two sides were about $2 billion to $2.5
billion apart on issues of wages,
retroactive pay and pensions.
The board released the parties from
the talks late Friday, triggering a 30-day
cooling-off period required under feder-
al law before the union could strike.
But the board also recommended
that Bush take the unusual step of
appointing a Presidential Emergency

Board to prevent a strike and study the
dispute. Hours later, Bush said he'd do
just that if Northwest and AMFA don't
settle by 12:01 p.m. EST March 12.
By appointing an emergency board,
the president would push the union's
first chance to strike back to mid-May.
In the meantime, the board would have
60 days to negotiate a settlement and
could even send its proposal to Con-
gress for a vote.

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Leaders of the mechanics union
claim federal mediators specifically told
their negotiating team that the release
carried no recommendation that Bush
intervene in the dispute, a scenario that
would have increased the union's bar-
gaining power. Steve MacFarlane, pres-
ident of AMFA Local 33, said he only
found out that mediators had. in fact,
recommended an emergency board by
reading it on the Internet.


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What a difference

Search continues for
victims of sub crash
Relatives of the Japanese fishermen
and students missing after their ship
was rammed and sunk by a U.S. sub-
marine brought their vigil to Hawaii
yesterday as rescuers continued
searching for their loved ones.
But hope dimmed as the Coast
Guard and Navy found no signs of sur-
vivorsnor major pieces of wreckage
more than 48 hours after the collision
in a search that covered more than
5,000 square miles of the Pacific
The Ehime Maru fishing vessel sank
in 1,800 feet of water 10 minutes after
it was struck by the USS Greeneville
on Friday afternoon.
Thirty-four family members and
officials traveled from Osaka to be
with survivors and await word of the
three crewmen, two teachers and four
students who disappeared in the chop-
py waters where the ship sank.
Allied strikes injure 7
Iraqis, destroy homes
Iraq said U.S. and British warplanes
injured seven people and destroyed 17
houses in airstrikes yesterday in the
southern part of the country.
Bombs hit civilian buildings and
military installations in the provinces
of Basra and Maisan, an unidentified
military spokesman said in comments
carried by the official Iraqi News

The strikes injured four men, two
women and a 4-year-old child,*the
spokesman said. He said the horses
were destroyed in Basra, 340 miles
south of Baghdad.
"Our heroic missile units confronted
the enemy warplanes, forcing them to
leave our skies," the spokesman added.
The U.S. Central Command i
Tampa, Fla., said U.S. and Britio
planes struck anti-aircraft artillery sites
in southern Iraq in response to anti-air-
craft artillery fire against its planes:
Fla. uietly removes
Co ederate flag
The Confederate flag that has
flown at the Florida Capitol sink
1978 has been removed.
The flag was retired quietly Feb. 2,
in contrast to the uproar in other
states over the Confederate flag,
which some say symbolizes South-
ern heritage but others contend rep-
resents slavery.
"The governor believes that most
Floridians would agree that the sym-
bols of Florida's past should not b
displayed in a manner that ~ihn
divide Floridians today," Gov. Jeb
Bush's spokeswoman Katie Baur
said in a statement.
Last month, the Georgia Legislature
approved a new state flag that is domi-
nated by a gold state seal.
The previous flag, with the Confed-
erate emblem, is depicted among five
tiny flags from Georgia's history along
the bottom of the banner.
- Compiled from Daily wire repprO


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