HigterFrequency OVERSEAS NEWS



international news _ 8th May, 2006

Napster Returns To Its Roots (Almost)

Text by Nick Lawrence (HigherFrequency)

Everyone with a memory span of longer than a couple of years will remember a time when Napster was more than just another i-Tunes clone. There was a time when Napster served as a playground for music fans with no money or those not willing to part with it. Now it seems that it is time to return to those heady days, sort of. Napster's American users are now able to listen to any of their two million songs on their server without shelling out a penny. But don't start deleting those mp3 blog addresses just yet.

While you are permitted to reminisce about the days of burning your free mp3s to mix CDs for your friends there is no longer anything of the sort allowed. What is on offer is a chance to listen to each track up to five times in its entirety while you decide whether you will part with your hard earned or not. This is a vast improvement on the short sample lengths offered by most services but if you are one of Napster's users from the UK, Germany or Canada, or if you aren't interested in the music of Britney Spears, Gwen Stefani, or Mariah Carey (all perplexingly listed under Dance/Electronic on Napster's site) then this news may be more frustrating than anything.

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