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Napster’s song-swapping service might not go back online until September under a briefing schedule released by an appeals court this week. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said Napster must submit a brief by Aug. 9 to appeal its shutdown last week by a lower-court judge. The record labels have until Sept. 6 to submit their response, and Napster can file its follow-up response by Sept. 20, according to the order issued Monday but made public Tuesday. The schedule means the appeals court is unlikely to decide whether Napster can go back online until after Sept. 20. Napster has said it plans to replace the free service with a legal subscription music sharing system by the end of the summer. The appeals court also could grant Napster a stay of the lower court’s shutdown. A source familiar with the case said the appeals court told Napster and the record labels that it will rule “shortly” on Napster’s request for a stay to the lower court’s shutdown. Napster officials declined to comment. Napster filed an emergency appeal last week after U.S. District Court Judge Marilyn Hall Patel ordered the Redwood City, Calif., company to keep its service dormant. Napster CEO Hank Barry asked Patel for permission to reactivate the service when its filtering system successfully blocked 99 percent of copyrighted material unauthorized by sharing. But Patel said Napster must remain offline until it can prove that its filtering system is 100 percent effective. Related Articles from The Industry Standard: FullAudio Signs EMI Mourning the MP3 Revolution Check, Please Copyright � 2001 The Industry Standard

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