On December 6, 1999, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) sued the first file sharing platform Napster for copyright infringment. This was the start of a still ongoing campaign against file-sharing and related practises. On the occasion of the 15th anniversary of RIAA’s lawsuit against Napster, I would like to retell the story of Napster relying on Joseph Menn’s book “all that rave. The Rise and Fall of Shawn Fanning’s Napster” (2003) as well as on court documents and press articles.
In the fourth and last part the slow death of Napster is highlighted when Bertelsmann AG bought the sued file sharing service and failed to turn it into a sustainable business model.