Napster forever changed not only the music industry, but also the Internet. The seminal music sharing service was a revelation when it was released in 1999. Suddenly, anyone with a ‘net connection could trade MP3s easily. And they did.
Napster was subsequently caught up in a legal battle that ultimately forced the firm to go legit. Although the company lives on to this day, it’s a pale shadow of its former self. Now, a new documentary dubbed Downloaded promises to tell the story. The movie premiered at SXSW earlier this year and has been picked up by VH1. You can watch the trailer below.
download watch that. I wasn’t even much of a Napster user—the uneven quality of recordings always used to bug me—but the story is a fascinating one. You might also be familiar with the man behind the movie: Alex Winter. Yes, that Alex Winter, of Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure fame. Thanks to Gizmodo for the tip.