Before there was iTunes and BitTorrent and Spotify, there was Napster.
Now, Napster is no more. The ride is over for the music service, which has been purchased by Rhapsody and will have its virtual doors shuttered forever in the coming days.
And what a wild ride it's been for the company that -- moreso perhaps that any of the others just mentioned -- changed the face of music as we know it. Napster took the world be storm in the late '90s, turning computer-savvy college students around the world into "pirates," but more importatly, changing the paradigms of both how we perceive the value of music and the nature of intellectual property.
Napster's most infamous period comes by way of Metallica, who led the charge of artists against the file-sharing client after a radio leak of their track "I Disappear" lead to the band discovering that the song had been circulating online in an unfinished form for some time.
The courts eventually took Napster out of commission as a file-sharing client, although allowed it to re-emerged as a legitimate online music store. Napster was purchased by Best Buy for $121 million in 2008, who remained its owner until the recent sale. Best Buy gains a stake in Rhapsody as part of the deal. Those with Napster accounts will have their accounts transferred over to Rhapsody.
Love it or hate it, Napster changed the world and now it's time to share your thoughts. Hit the comments to tell us how you best remember Napster, and if you'll miss its iconic logo or just say "good riddance."