|WarXchild Says |
After giving the industry big headaches, icons of file sharing have turned new leaf or gone on to disrupt other businesses.
The mere mention of the early file-sharing icons -- Shawn Fanning, Niklas Zennstr?m or Wayne Rosso -- used to be enough to send top recording industry executives and artists into a tirade.
But times have changed in just a matter of years. All three have moved on. Two of them head companies that offer solutions to online piracy, while one has gone on to disrupt another industry.
Here?s a look at the careers of these three, then and now.
-- Then: As a Northwestern University student in 1999, Fanning wanted an easier way to find and download MP3 music files, which were a growing underground hit among college students around the country. So he wrote an online file-sharing program and named it after his own nickname, "The Napster."
Napster quickly grew into a worldwide phenomenon used by millions of people who were swapping as many as 3 billion songs per month. Fanning, who later moved to the Bay Area to help found Napster Inc., became an enemy of the major record labels and artists such as Metallica.
A string of lawsuits forced the company to shut down its file-sharing service and eventually close.
-- Now: Fanning, 24, is co-founder and chief strategy officer of Snocap Inc., a San Francisco startup that provides the record industry with digital music licensing and copyright management services for use on peer-to-peer networks.
Snocap has already signed as clients the two biggest labels, Universal and Sony BMG, and many independent labels.
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