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IT News Thread, Megaupload taken down in Other News; ...
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    Dos_Box's Avatar
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    Megaupload taken down

    From the BBC: BBC News - 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.
    In response, the hackers group Anonymous has targeted the FBI and US Department of Justice websites.

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    LosOjos's Avatar
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    So it seems even without PIPA & SOPA the FBI can make arrests anyway, so what's the point?

    I find it equally terrifying and infuriating that the US manage repeatedly to make arrests outside the US (by ordering hosting governments to do so), especially when the actual crime committed wasn't even committed in the US in the first place.

    Who needs a war to take over the world? [/rant]

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    Quote Originally Posted by LosOjos View Post
    I find it equally terrifying and infuriating that the US manage repeatedly to make arrests outside the US (by ordering hosting governments to do so), especially when the actual crime committed wasn't even committed in the US in the first place.
    or even when an individual wasn't committing a crime in their own country

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    What gets me is that the US government have the right to seize domains *before* a trial.

    It also bewilders me that the US have somehow managed to arrest people on other countries for crimes committed outside their country. Megaupload is a Hong Kong company, with servers outside the USA. So, how'd they manage that?

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    NikChillin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LosOjos View Post
    So it seems even without PIPA & SOPA the FBI can make arrests anyway, so what's the point?

    I find it equally terrifying and infuriating that the US manage repeatedly to make arrests outside the US (by ordering hosting governments to do so), especially when the actual crime committed wasn't even committed in the US in the first place.

    Who needs a war to take over the world? [/rant]
    It all comes down to money, the US goverment welcomed freedom of speech when China were censoring their internet but when a whistleblower gave information regarding their misdomeanors they wanted the internet switched off!

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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    or even when an individual wasn't committing a crime in their own country
    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    What gets me is that the US government have the right to seize domains *before* a trial.

    It also bewilders me that the US have somehow managed to arrest people on other countries for crimes committed outside their country. Megaupload is a Hong Kong company, with servers outside the USA. So, how'd they manage that?
    Apparently it wasn't quite that simple. Firstly Megaupload did have server infrastructure in the USA, so technically US jurisdiction can apply to the company.

    Plus the actual charges were a bit more extensive than just the criminal copyright infringement. They were also charged with money laundering and racketeering. The founder has a background of computer fraud and handling stolen goods (plus accusations of investment fraud).

    May not be related to the freedom of speech conspiracy we hear so much about, at least in this particular case.

    In response the bunch of cyber-vandalists anonymous took down the DOJ, MPAA and RIAA websites. Nice, rational reaction there. How many of those involved should we expect to see in court before the month's out?

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    Perhaps this will help him change his mind...


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    LosOjos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jamesb View Post
    They were also charged with money laundering and racketeering. The founder has a background of computer fraud and handling stolen goods (plus accusations of investment fraud).
    A classic FBI trick that's worked for them for years; make damning accusations to get the result you want. Even if they're completely false, an investigation will have to be made, which in the FBI's case usually means crippling those accused so that regardless of the verdict, their business/life is ruined anyway.

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    Servers were in Virginia were they not?

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    SOME of the servers (less than a quarter) were in the US, in texas, chicago, washington and virginia. Most of the datacentres were in Europe or Asia, as the largest download base came from those 2 continents. Korea/Japan/Taiwan/Malaysia were the worst offenders for downloading, followed by Australia, followed by Europe. The servers they had in Europe were hosted in Sweden, and as proven with Piratebay, nothing could be done as no Swedish law was being violated and Sweden does not have an extradition treaty with the US or anything that allows the US to take their citizens products off the web - doing so opens up the US for large scale diplomatic issues again.

    Its funny that the US think they can police the internet, but hell file sharers will just go around and file share by disk sending or something soon, so they can't do anything about that unless they stop all mail services everywhere!

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    LosOjos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by somabc View Post
    Servers were in Virginia were they not?
    Possibly, I know the main host was Hong Kong based but the sheer size of the operation, it wouldn't surprise me to find they also had servers in the US.

    Regardless though, they're being charged because of hosting copyrighted material. Now, on a site that any usr can sign up to and upload anything, it has to be expected that some illegal files will be uploaded. It also has to be expected that the host will remove those materials when they a) spot them or b) receive a report from the rights holder, which [they say] they did. How is it any different from YouTube hosting music videos? Or Facebook hosting copyright protected photos?

    To paraphrase "Ironrash" (a commenter on the BBC's article), are they going to ban Sony from selling DVD players because somebody might play a pirated DVD in one?

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    Quote Originally Posted by somabc View Post
    Servers were in Virginia were they not?
    And Washington, yep.

    Quote Originally Posted by LosOjos View Post
    A classic FBI trick that's worked for them for years; make damning accusations to get the result you want. Even if they're completely false, an investigation will have to be made, which in the FBI's case usually means crippling those accused so that regardless of the verdict, their business/life is ruined anyway.
    Actually the original accusations (and particularly the convictions) were from his native country, not the FBI. Only the new range of convictions are from the FBI.

    Let's be honest - if he'd been an online banker and the same background had come up, and the same accusations, people would be whooping and cheering rather than claiming it's all a conspiracy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LosOjos View Post
    Possibly, I know the main host was Hong Kong based but the sheer size of the operation, it wouldn't surprise me to find they also had servers in the US.

    Regardless though, they're being charged because of hosting copyrighted material. Now, on a site that any usr can sign up to and upload anything, it has to be expected that some illegal files will be uploaded. It also has to be expected that the host will remove those materials when they a) spot them or b) receive a report from the rights holder, which [they say] they did. How is it any different from YouTube hosting music videos? Or Facebook hosting copyright protected photos?

    To paraphrase "Ironrash" (a commenter on the BBC's article), are they going to ban Sony from selling DVD players because somebody might play a pirated DVD in one?
    I seem to remember something about this when the troubles with megaupload first started. There was difficulty for some getting their material removed, and even when it was taken down only the link complained about would be taken down - not the actual content if it had multiple links.

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    The outcome will be pretty simple though as far as I can see.

    Megaupload will disappear
    10 new sites will appear, having learned from the mistakes made by Megaupload
    Some of the anonymous muppets will end up in prison.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nephilim View Post
    Perhaps this will help him change his mind...
    Hmm bad wig alert....

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