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File Trading Software Site Kazaa.com Sold

21 Jan, 2002 By: Hive News

Under pressure from copyright lawsuit the Recording Industry Association of America filed late last year, Dutch Internet file sharing company Kazaa today said it has sold its Kazaa.com Web site and software to privately held Australian firm Sharman Networks.

The site also continued to offer downloads of the software that enables the controversial distributed peer-to-peer (p2p) network.

"The original brains behind Kazaa have moved on to develop new innovative software," the Kazaa.com Web site said Monday. Kazaa.com also published a copyright notice saying users of the software are bound by the laws governing copyright in their respective countries.

Kazaa said Jan. 17 it suspended downloads of the popular software, pending a decision in a copyright lawsuit filed against it in a Dutch court. But users who already had the software were still able to swap files.

A Dutch court in November ordered the site to stop users from trading copyrighted materials, but the site managers contended they could not comply because they had no way of knowing who their users are.

Unlike the music-trading predecessor Napster, which relied on a central computer serve as a hub for file trades, Kazaa's p2p network harnessed the aggregate computing power of users. If a user serving as a "node" shut off the connection, the system would find another to fill the void.

Included in the sale are the Web site, the Kazaa name and logo, as well as a license for FastTrack, a file-sharing technology that it licenses to other file swapping services, such as Grokster and Morpheus.

Terms of the deal were not made public, and further information on Sharman was not immediately available.

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