Harvard Will Not Block Napster Access

University joins several other in rebuffing bands

King's original letter posited that Harvard "has a moral, ethical and legal obligation" to prevent copyright infringement over its networks, but cited no specific legal statutes.

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act indemnifies Internet Service Providers (ISP) such as Harvard from copyright abuses committed over their computer networks.


However, the act also requires that an ISP identify users infringing on copyrights when prompted by the copyright holder.

The act also requires that the ISP terminate the Internet connection of a repeat copyright offender.

Harvard Computer Society (HCS) President David J. Mitby praised the University's decision.

"The general consensus was that we support the open use of computing," Mitby said of the group. "Not everyone who uses Napster uses it illegally." HCS drafted a position statement two weeks ago opposing any proposal that would block access to Napster.

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