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"With so much controversy brewing on America's campuses over Napster, we thought it appropriate to allow actual college students to speak out on the subject... Student.com wants to register opinions on the matter to see how the collegiate market really feels about the issue."
—Jon Vena, Student.com Culture Editor
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Student.com, an Internet site for college students, has formed an open discussion titled "The Cult Of Napster," allowing the youth to present arguments for and against the file-sharing software.

"With so much controversy brewing on America's campuses over Napster, we thought it appropriate to allow actual college students to speak out on the subject," said Student.com Culture Editor Jon Vena. "There's so many sides to the argument—from the copyright issue to the fact that Napster seems to be making its biggest impact on campuses. Student.com wants to register opinions on the matter to see how the collegiate market really feels about the issue."

Napster has ignited a firestorm of late, with hard rockers Metallica and rapper Dr. Dre suing the popular online MP3-trading application and rap-rockers Limp Bizkit endorsing the site by allowing them to sponsor a free summer tour.

With the formation of an open discussion on the topic, Student.com hopes to gain an idea of what America's young adults feel about the controversy, and whether or not copyright laws, piracy issues and artists' rights come into play when students use Napster.

In order to access the discussion, Web surfers should head to www.student.com. The discussion link appears on the site's front page.

In related news, The Offspring have joined the ranks of Napster supporters, along with Limp Bizkit, and publicly voiced their support of the controversial online service.

"I don't know what Metallica's motives or reasons for what they're doing are, but as far as we're concerned, I support the exchange of MP3 files online," Offspring frontman Dexter Holland told rollingstone.com. "Napster facilitates people being able to share music. It's like trading cards. And something like Napster is like having the convention."

While Metallica have filed suit, citing the loss of revenue due to the online swapping, Holland disputes the idea.

"From what I can tell it's not taking any money from people," Holland said. "I think it's expanding bands' fan bases. For us, when our last record was relatively new, about a year ago, we were the most downloaded band on the Internet— and geez, it certainly didn't hurt our record sales. We were doing great at that time. We were in the top ten for like six months or something. Somebody told me NSYNC's record was available on Napster like three weeks before it came out, and obviously it didn't hurt their sales either. So I think it's good. It's the spirit of music; it's the spirit of rock & roll. More people coming to the party. Not less."

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