The main concern facing musicians who create the music that is traded on Napster's service is that they, the musicians, are not gaining the royalties that should be owed to them. Traditionally, royalties are distributed based on the percentage of ownership that one has for the song, the royalty rate and the amount of sales that an album or single generates. Current copyright laws imply that a song is protected from the point that it exists in "fixed, tangible form," as long as the piece was created after March 1, 1989. This means that written or recorded music is protected and doesn't even require a copyright notice, although indicating that your piece is your copyright would be strongly recommended. What this boils down to is that whenever a radio station, club or a band uses the intellectual property of an individual, that individual deserves to be compensated.
As with everything in life the lowest man on the totem pole is always the most affected by change, and within the music industry the lowest men and women on the totem pole are the musicians themselves. Record executives have, and always will, exploit artists for financial gain. Frequently, when an artist is signed to a large record company, an artist begins with a financial loss from the money that is spent on recording the music as well as the promotional items that must be sent to radio stations and other media outlets in order to garner support for their record. Many musicians are up in arms over Napster and the service it provides because they foresee less money coming their way down the road if Napster is allowed to operate in the manner where songs are traded for free.
Singer Elton John says, "I am against Internet piracy and it is wrong for companies like Napster and others to promote stealing from artists online."
Singer Aimee Mann takes John's sentiments one step further by saying, "If artists don't get paid for making music, how are they supposed to survive?"
Scott Stapp, who is the lead singer and lyricist for the rock band Creed, says, "Napster is sneaking in the back door and robbing me blind."
"The ideal situation is clear and simple-to put Napster out of business,"-Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich.