Without SOPA or PIPA needed, Feds bust MegaUpload and close it



Apparently the site that raised the ruckus was a porn-oriented search engine that got tired of seeing their copyrighted content on megaupload. Apparently the owner of the site has been previously busted for insider trading and some other usavory practices.

I think the most stunning thing to come out of this is that megaupload was apparently stupid enough to run a rapidshare-type site out of the US. I was always of the impression that such sites based themselves either offshore or in European countries with “fair use” provisions that are much less stringent than those in here in the States.

Wow, I thought of all those sites were like cockroaches. Amazing.

Today, law enforcement also executed more than 20 search warrants in the United States and eight countries, seized approximately $50 million in assets and targeted sites where Megaupload has servers in Ashburn, Va., Washington, D.C., the Netherlands and Canada. In addition, the U.S. District Court in Alexandria, Va., ordered the seizure of 18 domain names associated with the alleged Mega conspiracy.


The folks arrested were seized in New Zealand and will be extradited. Server farms closed here in the US…but also in The Netherlands? Really?

If the folks behind places like Rapidshare and the like aren’t frantically scrubbing copyrighted material out of their servers right now (which seems like it could be about 90% of what they host), they should be.

Probably brought a bit too much attention to themselves with publicity stunts like this one:

… indicted along with Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom (aka Kim Schmitz and Kim Tim Jim Vestor …

The background story to that song isamazing. In that after making it they really had to fight illegitimate UMG DMCA filings.

“The fact that this expression could be silenced by a major label — without any apparent infringement — should be seriously troubling to anyone who cares about artists’ speech rights,” says Casey Rae-Hunter, Deputy Director, Future of Music Coalition. “If this can happen to Snoop Dogg and others, it can happen to anyone.”

I liked megaupload personally. File sharing sites like that are pretty common for sharing smaller, non illegal files as well, especially mods.

They absolutely have use…but go ahead and type the name of a band, a recent album title in quotes, and then “zip” or “rar” and there’s a decent chance google will return results that take you to Megaupload or a similar site.

They closed down a major corporation ripping Hollywood off. (Allegedly.) I wish they would close down major corporations ripping the rest of us off daily. (Wall Street.)

Was megaupload complying with takedown notices?

I’ve never browsed it or whatever, so I’ve only seen it used for game mods. Seemed like one of the sketchier general hosting sites anyway though.

And what can MU do about that? They implemented word filters and complied with every takedown request.

Cite please?

(Because the DOJ seems to have documentation and evidence that says otherwise.)

That’s actually the deep question we have to answer going forward in a world where copyright is protected alongside freedom of speech.

Speaking hypothetically, are companies that make tools that are mainly used for criminal activity but that also have possible legitimate uses able to continue to exist? Filesharing has obvious legitimate uses, but such aggregate, unvetted sites are mainly used to share copyrighted material. What about lockpicking tools? What about radar detectors, ect?

What about companies that make guns?

Do you have a link to the indictment? All I have is the FBI press release, which says:

For example, when notified by a rights holder that a file contained infringing content, the indictment alleges that the conspirators would disable only a single link to the file, deliberately and deceptively leaving the infringing content in place to make it seamlessly available to millions of users to access through any one of the many duplicate links available for that file.

That doesn’t say otherwise, as they’re obviously talking about two different files (although I’m not sure they realize it).

No, they’re talking about the same file, and disabling one of many generated links to the same file.

Next up: Rapidshare. Then…

Time to think about ending my subscription to dropbox before they get round to it.

I have used megavideo to watch stream of videos. I even have a premium account, because I have not problem paying for my enteirnament.

Latelly the people that upload videos, like the TV serie “Terranova”, is choosing different services than megavideo because megavideo don’t pay the uploaders anything, while other services give some money (similar system to youtube).

Is interesting that this dude was swiming in money. Hope the news that theres a lot of money to be made in this get as publicity as possible, so more people open more competing services. Competing services could result on some services with more quality.

Sadly, the people that produce these TV series or movies don’t want to sell that stuff in the internet. I already pay for that stuff, but not the right people :P, I am not happy with this.

Heres a Wikipedia Article

In the US almost all content including the Terra Nova TV series you mentioned are available on iTunes for what I consider quite reasonable prices generally $2/episode for SD and $3/episode for HD. That’s where I get all my TV shows that aren’t on Netflix. No idea what the availability outside the US is though.

There are a few exceptions – most prominently HBO seems to refuse to put up anything anywhere near the release date. Most other networks seem to put up their TV shows just a few hours after the original airing time.