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Thread: Megaupload file-sharing site shut down

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    Megaupload file-sharing site shut down


    Megaupload, one of the internet's largest file-sharing sites, has been shut down by officials in the US.

    The site's founders have been charged with violating piracy laws.

    Federal prosecutors have accused it of costing copyright holders more than $500m (£320m) in lost revenue. The firm says it was diligent in responding to complaints about pirated material.

    The news came a day after anti-piracy law protests, but investigators said they were ordered two weeks ago.

    The US Justice Department said that Megaupload's two co-founders Kim Dotcom, formerly known as Kim Schmitz, and Mathias Ortmann were arrested in Auckland, New Zealand along with two other employees of the business at the request of US officials. It added that three other defendants were still at large.

    "This action is among the largest criminal copyright cases ever brought by the United States and directly targets the misuse of a public content storage and distribution site to commit and facilitate intellectual property crime," said a statement posted on its website.

    Third-party sites
    The charges included copyright infringement, conspiracies to commit racketeering, copyright infringement and money laundering.

    A federal court in Virginia ordered that 18 domain names associated with the Hong Kong-based firm be seized.

    The Justice Department said that more than 20 search warrants had been executed in nine countries, and that approximately $50m in assets had been seized.

    It claimed that the accused had pursued a business model designed to promote the uploading of copyrighted works.

    "The conspirators allegedly paid users whom they specifically knew uploaded infringing content and publicised their links to users throughout the world," a statement said.

    "By actively supporting the use of third-party linking sites to publicise infringing content, the conspirators did not need to publicise such content on the Megaupload site.

    "Instead, the indictment alleges that the conspirators manipulated the perception of content available on their servers by not providing a public search function on the Megaupload site and by not including popular infringing content on the publicly available lists of top content downloaded by its users."

    Before it was shut down the site posted a statement saying the allegations against it were "grotesquely overblown".

    "The fact is that the vast majority of Mega's internet traffic is legitimate, and we are here to stay," it added.

    "If the content industry would like to take advantage of our popularity, we are happy to enter into a dialogue. We have some good ideas. Please get in touch."

    Blackouts
    The announcement came a day after thousands of websites took part in a "blackout" to protest against the Stop Online Piracy Act (Sopa) and the Protect Intellectual Property Act (Pipa).

    The US Chamber of Commerce has defended the proposed laws saying that enforcement agencies "lack the tools" to effectively apply existing intellectual property laws to the digital world.

    Industry watchers suggest this latest move may feed into the wider debate.

    "Neither of the bills are close to being passed - they need further revision. But it appears that officials are able to use existing tools to go after a business alleged to be inducing piracy," said Gartner's media distribution expert Mike McGuire.

    "It begs the question that if you can find and arrest people who are suspected to be involved in piracy using existing laws, then why introduce further regulations which are US-only and potentially damaging."
    BBC News - Megaupload file-sharing site shut down

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    Just minutes after the U.S. Department of Justice repossessed the domains of Megaupload, Megavideo, Megaporn and a collection of other popular filesharing sites, the hacker collective Anonymous got to work on a few takedowns of its own.

    On Thursday afternoon, Anonymous claimed credit for cyberattacks that knocked offline the websites of the U.S. Department of Justice, Recording Industry of America, Motion Picture Association of America and Universal Music. The so-called denial of service attacks that overwhelmed those sites with junk traffic came less than an hour after the Justice Department announced the takedown of the Mega sites, along with the arrest of former hacker and Mega founder Kim Dotcom and six others, who are being indicted on charges of copyright infringement and money laundering.

    “One thing is certain: EXPECT US!,” wrote the Anonymous-linked Anonops Twitter feed Thursday just after the Mega raid, adding a hashtag for Megaupload.

    “Anonymous/Megaupload backlash update: RIAA - Recording Industry Association of America is now Tango Down,” wrote the Twitter feed Anonnews less than one hour later, as other Anonymous feeds claimed credit for downing Justice.gov and Universalmusic.com.

    Update: The U.S. Copyright office website is now down as well. Expect this to go on for a while. “Get some popcorn… it’s going to be a long lulzy night,” writes Anonnews.

    Anonnews also now calls the operation the largest ever that Anonymous has undertaken in terms of participants, with 5,635 computers running the distributed attack software that the hacker group uses.

    The raid on the Mega sites, which were massively popular among Anonymous’ young, copyright-flouting contingent of the Web, come just as the Internet is mobilized for protest against Hollywood’s copyright regime. Wednesday marked a largely successful day of protest against the copyright-enforcing Stop Online Piracy and the Protect IP Act, with Reddit, Wikipedia and other popular sites going dark in protest of the bills. The Department of Justice’s raid on the Mega sites just a day later must seem to many in the anti-copyright movement as a retaliatory move aimed at showing that even without SOPA or PIPA, law enforcement can take action against sites that Hollywood accuses of copyright infringement.

    Universal Music, for its part, added itself to Anonymous’ target list in a recent legal spat with the Mega sites. After Mega’s recently appointed chief executive officer and hip hop producer Swizz Beatz assembled a team of celebrities including Kanye West, Will.i.am, Alicia Keyes and others to appear in a promotional video for the company, Universal issued a takedown notice to YouTube. Despite not owning the rights to the song, YouTube nonetheless removed the video, sparking a lawsuit from Mega.

    With Mega’s execs now detained in New Zealand and likely awaiting extradition to the U.S., the sites seem to have become rallying point for Anonymous’ anti-copyright activists. “Support [The Pirate Bay], Torrents, Magnets, Megaupload and its alternatives. Support file-sharing. Legal or not. It is our right,” wrote one prominent hacker within Anonymous who goes by the name Sabu, in the midst of a string of tweets calling for a boycott of Hollywood and record labels. ”The entertainment industries will see that they can not simply censor us for the basis of profit.”
    Anonymous Hackers Hit DOJ, Universal Music, MPAA And RIAA After MegaUpload Takedown - Forbes

  3. #3
    AHddicted! Dan's Avatar
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    yeah i saw it .. crazy how even without the sopa/pipa they can do it ...

    on a side note i was downloading some old sets from mega... and did not get all from Jan 2011

    anyone has all sets from Jan 2011?
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    AH.FM Addict rdevito's Avatar
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    Another pathetic move from Feds to stop the piracy.

    I will make the Pirate Bay's letter my words about SOPA:

    http://static.thepiratebay.org/legal/sopa.txt
    I do not live in the world of sobriety.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan View Post
    yeah i saw it .. crazy how even without the sopa/pipa they can do it ...

    on a side note i was downloading some old sets from mega... and did not get all from Jan 2011

    anyone has all sets from Jan 2011?
    Which sets do you need?

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    AH Listener Novus's Avatar
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    This is apparently their new address for now: MEGAUPLOAD IS BACK, NEW MEGAUPLOAD SITE - The leading online storage and file delivery service -

    Kinda hard to tell if it's legit, but with a 140k+ likes on Facebook... looks pretty legit lol.

    Sucks that happened Dan, I know a lot of people are pissed they got their personal files taken down and are gone...

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