In a closely watched ruling, a three-judge appellate panel in San Francisco today ruled that Napster Inc. must quit making it possible for people to easily transfer copyrighted music. The case was, however, also sent back to a lower court to rewrite an injunction recording companies had won earlier so that it will be more narrowly tailored toward copyrighted works. The recording industry issued a statement calling today's opinion of the 9th Circuit Court of appeals a "clear victory." The Napster case had drawn the attention of book and magazine publishers, film-makers and broadcasters who feared that any decision allowing music to be freely exchanged without royalty payments could set a precedent in other publishing areas.
Copyright February 2001, Crain Communications Inc.