Napster, Music Publishers Reach Preliminary Settlement

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NEW YORK — Napster Inc. and the groups representing U.S. music publishers and songwriters have reached a preliminary agreement to settle their copyright lawsuit, executives from Napster and the groups announced Monday.

In a conference call, the executives said the settlement — which must be approved by a federal judge, plaintiffs in the class-action suit, and the board of a music publishing industry group — will include a $26 million payment from Napster to the plaintiffs.

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