Sunday, April 13, 2003
The Napster autopsy report.
Menn’s revelations are startling. Fanning’s ruffian uncle, John Fanning, actually conned his vulnerable nephew into handing over 70 percent of the company right at the outset. Later, Napster secretly paid musicians like rapper Chuck D to publicly support file-sharing (say it ain’t so, Chuck). At the end, after execs at the German media giant Bertelsmann tried to save the company—and ruined their own careers in the process—one of the young hackers provided the perfect postscript: “Everyone’s being greedy. We’re all fighting over scraps.”