Archive for February, 2001

We been had.  Hoodwinked.  Led astray.  Run amok.

In the worst judgment since the Supreme Court’s coronation of King George, a federal appellate court has dealt what could be the proverbial “death blow” to Napster, Inc.

The ruling handed down by the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Monday, February 12th, upheld almost all aspects of an injunction against Napster issued by a lower court last July.

Napster said at the time that U.S. District judge Marilyn Patel’s injunction- which ordered it to remove all copyrighted materials from its service- would force it to shut down while the music industry’s copyright lawsuit against it goes to trial.

The appeals court almost immediately decided to review Patel’s injunction, putting it on hold as they weighed its merits, a process they completed just this past week.

A three judge panel from the appeals court wrote in its decision that Patel “correctly recognized that a preliminary injunction against Napster’s participation in copyright infringement is both warranted and needed.”

They did find, however, that Patel’s injunction was “too broad in scope” and ordered her to immediately write a new, more narrow injunction, which would still force Napster to keep copyrighted material off its service.

Under the new injunction, record labels will have to notify Napster of specific titles that are on its system before the company is required to remove links to it. Under Patel’s injunction Napster would have to “police” it’s own database. The new ruling also suggests that Napster cannot be held accountable for misnamed files, i.e. songs clever users make available under false names (hint, hint).

The bad news is that even with those changes to the injunction, if Napster guru Shawn Fanning cannot come up with a way to remove specific songs, it won’t be able to keep operating once the new injunction is issued. Until that injunction sees the light of day the service is allowed to continue operating as normal.

“We don’t really know what the rules are, what the boundaries are. We don’t have a good sense about what the court wants us to do,” Fanning said. “It’s still not clear what is going to happen.”

Fanning went on to express a concern that many in the industry are already whispering about. “I don ‘t think this will stop the progress we’re making in terms of building the service. I do think that if we are forced to shut down while litigation is being resolved, it will result in a huge number of unhappy people dispersing to other similar sites”.

In other words, start boning up on how to use Limewire.

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Dj Bee doin' what he does best.

DJ Bee. Besus tha Turntablist. Big Baby Besus.

The man who holds down the 5 to 10 slot weeknights on 102.9 FM, 103 JAMZ, goes by a basket full of names around these parts, but in the 757 he’s pretty much universally regarded as “the baddest of the bad asses on the 1’s & 2’s”.

Whether it’s when he’s cutting it up on the 7 o’clock mixtape or while he’s educatin’ the masses on “Hip-Hop Jeopardy”, for Besus it’s always about the music. “Dj’n/turntablism is my life…hip-hop is my life.”

“Oh yeah, mixtapes are my life” (he adds with a smile). “Seriously dawg, mixtapes are my other love. I’m all about keepin’ the peoples ears to the street ya know.”

And keepin’ ears to the street is what the man does best. When something drops in the 757 you can rest assured of several things:

#1) Bee will drop it first. Everyone else gets the table scraps, #2) lt won’t be hittin’ stores for weeks if not months, and #3) Just when you other DJs are puttin’ it in heavy rotation, he’s movin’ on to the next big thing…see the Nas, Jigga, and Cormega soap opera that’s been playin’ out lately.

Somewhat amusingly, we can all thank one ofthe area’s most “colorfuI” characters for Bee’s emergence onto the local scene. While Besus was attending NSU he was workin’ a gig spinnin’ at the Peninsula nightclub the Mirage.

As he put it, “there was only ‘bout 30 people in the club that night, but one of ’em was the right people.”

Then 103 JAMZ on-air personality Spice, a.k.a. Qadir was in the spot and he liked what he saw. (Side note: Y’all know Spice without really knowing him, he provides the voice for all those Ron Perry radio & TV ads and has a single, “One ln The Drop”, that’s getting’ some airplay these days.)

Anyway, the two met on a Thursday night and that Friday Bee was on the air at 103. He’s been a fixture ever since.

Yup, Philly may have borrowed one of our most beloved sons (what up A.I?), but in some kind of pseudo-karma sort of way the City Of Brotherly Love decided to let us hold on to one of hers for a while.

l’d call it a fair trade.