"Frankly it doesn't matter that Napster has been down, because Napster is gone."
——analyst John Gantz

ALL QUIET ON THE NAPSTER FRONT

Isn’t That Robert Plant Singing, "Does Anyone Remember Napster?"
It’s been eight days, and file-sharing savior Napster still hasn’t risen again.

Napster’s official explanation for the delay, according to the New York Post, is that the company is building a database of 800,000 submitted songs from scratch, and that this database is having problems interacting with other parts of Napster's software.

Napster execs shut down the service a couple of days after upgrading to a new version of software designed to filter out banned files. The swappery is working with methods of "fingerprinting" digital files so that it can quickly tell whether they are allowed to be on the service. A source close to the company cited by the Post denied there was any problem with Relatable or LoudEye technology, which the company has licensed.

A spokesman for Bertelsmann eCommerce Group, a Napster investor, said it expects that service to be running by the end of the summer.

"Frankly it doesn't matter that Napster has been down, because Napster is gone," said analyst John Gantz, who thinks the company has nothing to salvage. "It used to be a resource of 1 1/2 million titles; now it's about 50,000."

Bertelsmann still plans to re-launch Napster as a subscription service, which will also include Top 100-type music from MusicNet, the sub service joint venture from RealNetworks, EMI, Warner Music and Bertie.

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