Judge names mediator in Napster case

Posted: Thursday, April 12, 2001

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- A federal judge has named a Silicon Valley high-tech veteran to mediate on technical issues plaguing the record industry and Napster's online song-swapping network, The Wall Street Journal reported.

A.J. ''Nick'' Nichols will attempt to smooth disagreements between Redwood City-based Napster Inc. and the record industry about how an injunction ordering the online service to remove all unauthorized music from its site should be handled, the newspaper reported Monday on its Web site.

A meeting is scheduled Tuesday where Napster is expected to report on its progress in blocking unauthorized songs from its site.

The record industry contends Napster is not using all the technology available to keep copyrighted music off its site. The popular song-swapping company disagrees, saying it is doing everything it can to comply with the injunction.

Nichols, who has worked in Silicon Valley since the 1960s, has a doctorate in engineering from Stanford University. He has worked at several technology companies and professional mediation services, including serving as a mediator during a lawsuit between Sun Microsystems Inc. and Microsoft Corp.

He is to report to U.S. District Court Judge Marilyn Hall Patel in San Francisco.

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