Napster going from pirate to partner


Former music business pariah Napster is making a comeback as a legit online digital music outlet through a pact with three major music labels, according to press reports.

Napster has nearly sealed a deal to sell tunes touted on MusicNet, a joint venture of AOL Time Warner's Warner Music Group, EMI Recorded Music and Bertelsmann's BMG Entertainment and RealNetworks. MusicNet executives had previously expressed their intention to strike a deal with the company they formerly viewed as a digital music pirate. But Warner Music and EMI reportedly want proof that Napster is operating a legit operation before they make their tunes available to it for downloading.