An objective of copyright law is to promote creativity and the dissemination of ideas by granting artists, writers, and other creators of artistic works a limited monopoly in their works. MP3 files consist of a digital audio compression algorithm that makes an audio file smaller without reducing sound quality. One problem created by this technology is that when combined with the Internet, millions of people can simultaneously access, reproduce and distribute copyrighted works in digitized form without authorization. Under this premise, Ms. Mullen presents two case studies concerning MP3.com and Napster, in which she relates their various characteristics to copyright law, and concludes that both companies' techniques appear to infringe. Finally, Ms. Mullen discusses technological protection measures that the entertainment industry may use to prevent copyright infringement of digital works.
Kathryn I. Mullen,
"The Rich Man's Eight Track": MP3 Files, Copyright Infringement, and Fair Use ,
5 Intellectual Property L. Rev. 237
Available at: http://scholarship.law.marquette.edu/iplr/vol5/iss1/7