Napster CEO Admits Apple and iPod are 'Target #1'

Napsteris recent Super Bowl commercial is just the beginning of a campaign to prove to consumers that "itis stupid to buy an iPod," the companyis CEO has told a media weekly. But such a ad blitz might be easier said than done in parts of Europe.

According to Napster CEO Chris Gorog, speaking to New Media Age magazine, the companyis Napster To Go portable subscription service will launch in March in Great Britain.

Mr. Gorog said his company is "confident" music subscription paid by the month will win out over Appleis iTunes music service, which charges customers US99 cents for each music file download that they can permanently keep. The Napster model, at $15, is a subscription-based service that cuts off access to listening to downloaded music when the subscriber stops paying the monthly fee.

The "Do the Math" campaign, now running on television and in print in the U.S., targets would-be iPod users, in an effort to get them thinking which is better -- $15 a month to listen to all the music you want, or 99 cents for each song from Apple.

"Weire going to be communicating to people that itis stupid to buy an iPod," Mr. Gorog said.

But in the U.K., it will be much more difficult for Napster to sell its message of comparison with iTunes and the iPod. Standards set by the Advertising Standards Authority make it difficult for any company to advertise a product in Great Britain and compare it to another, unless the comparison is relevant, clear and very specific. A number of major companies, including Apple Computer, have found themselves in trouble with the governmentis Trade Standards Office over comparison advertising in the past.

Making matters worse for Napster, similiar laws to those in the U.K. also exist in other parts of Europe as well.

Napster has yet to reveal its exact advertising campaign for the U.K.