Napster yesterday announced plans to launch Napster 2.0 in Canada this summer.
The company hopes this will make it "the first on-demand service" to launch there, and promises Canada's music fans a localized version of the service, with access to Canadian radio stations built-in, along with promotions and content from domestic acts. The company will offer both subscription and à la carte downloads in the territory.
Roxio/Napster CEO Chris Gorog said: "Napster has long-recognized the huge demand for a compelling, legitimate music experience among our Canadian neighbours.
"We are extremely pleased to respond to this demand by bringing the first on-demand subscription service and the biggest brand in online music to Canada."
Canada is ripe for digital music services and have a healthy respect for the rights of copyright-holders, a recent national survey there shows. An impressive 90 per cent of Canadians surveyed think artists and songwriters have a right to copyright protection. The survey was conducted by POLLARA.
The results also show many Canadians disagree with a recent legal decision in the country that suggested it is not illegal to upload music from the Internet.
The report says: "63 per cent of Canadians said that when an Internet user makes copies of thousands of music files available to others anywhere on the Internet, it is a violation of the copyright of the composers and artists. More than seven in ten of those surveyed had heard of the court decision."
A preliminary survey by Washington-based polling organization Pew Research Center found that among 2,755 musicians and songwriters polled on-line between March 15 and April 15, 67 per cent felt artists should have complete control over songs that they copyright and that copyright laws do a good job protecting artists.
However, 83 per cent of the musicians and songwriters polled said that they have provided free samples or previews of their work online. 35 per cent said free downloading has helped their careers, while 30 per cent see file-sharing as a major threat to the creative industries.