Belgian police, prompted by music industry complaints, have raided Napster and mp3blast.com users’ homes during the last several months. According to a prosecution spokesman, only users who refused to cease file-sharing activities were actually targeted.
The raids reflect increasing European resolve against unuathorized downloading of copyrighted materials. Wednesday, the European Parliament endorsed expanded legal rights for musicians and labels whose material is distributed over the Web. The 15 EU members are expected to ratify the new law.
In related news, Europeans are debating the imposition of levies on computers and other tools of digital copying that would then be distributed to artists. Forms of the tax have been in place in parts of Europe for some time.