Date of this Version

September 2000

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Details

"Napster and Gnutella: is distributed file-swapping legal in Australia", CCH Law and Technology, Issue 25, 6, September 2000
Reproduced with the kind permission of CCH Australia Limited.
For more information see


Following the initial court battle between Napster and the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) in the United States, this article dicusses the legal position of 'file swapping' software in Australia. The newer generations of file sharing software, such as Gnutella, have moved beyond Napster's central servers to distributed file swapping software. Does the provision of such software amount to authorisation of copyright infringement? Are there viable options to compensate copyright owners for loss of legitimate revenue?



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