Megaupload Shutdown 'A Massive Success'

The MPAA are celebrating the long-term effects of shutting down file-sharing site Megaupload, and have new targets in their sites. But who will win the copyright wars in the end?

Ultimate Guitar

The MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America) has called this year's Megaupload shutdown a "massive success" according to Torrent Freak, and has named other "notorious markets" that it wants to target next.

Megaupload hosted millions of files until was taken down in January in one of the largest criminal copyright cases ever.

Hacking group Anonymous protested at the time by attacking websites for the FBI and US Justice Department.

Many other rogue sites were affected when Megaupload was taken down. Several sites which relied on affiliate revenue from Megaupload, which the MPAA claims resulted in less copyrighted material being available.

"This year's seizures of and by the Department of Justice illustrate the extent and impact that hosting hubs have on the online landscape," said the MPAA's Michael O'Leary.

"When these two websites were taken down, many linking websites, custom search engines, and custom streaming scripts that relied on the sites for content became inoperable. Some websites were abandoned by their operators, others lost traffic, while still others shifted their business model.

"In sum, the impact of these seizures was massive and the hub landscape is still recovering."

Other sites that are now in the MPAA's targets are Isohunt, The Pirate Bay, Demonoid and many others.

Who will ultimately win the copyright wars? Share your predictions in the comments.

95 comments sorted by best / new / date

    MPAA can suckle on my big angry Scottish boaby.
    And my American chode!
    cip 123
    ummm i wouldn't say that if you're ever in scotland just a heads up
    Right! Because everyone knows being American, especially on this site, makes you an *****, but if you live in the EU, you're a better person and have full license to hate on people you've never met based on geographical location and cultural stereotypes. Say what you want, but I'm glad my ancestors threw your tea in the ocean and ambushed those bright red coat wearing idiots. Our economy might suck right now and our government bombs places with drones and causes collateral damage but at least, personally, I can put all that political and stereotypical bullshit behind me and treat other people like well, people, not a representation of a government I don't agree with. I'm just a dude, happened to be born here in the USA, and oh ya, I'm most likely better at guitar than most of you, so if you want to hate me hate me because I play better, not just because I live in a different country that you happen to not agree with.
    I was about to understand you till I got to the part where you talk about your guitar skills, typical USA.
    yeah wtf was that! I'm reading thinking " this guys a little excited but he may have a point" that was from " im just a dude" part, then his giant ego rained down upon us. If he has to announce it on an annonomous internet site then i guess he has to tell himslef that every morning while he cries in the miror.
    cip 123
    Umm I never insulted your country or the guy I just pointed out that we have a different meaning for "Chode" over here. Now I like America I don't much care for politics or wars but you know what I don't like? you.
    Chill dude. Take a joke! I'm American and I don't care about the jokes, even laugh at most of them.
    i think goto11 was the only guy in the world to read that and take it as an anti-amarican slander
    Well, yay for confirming the US citizen = dumbass thing.
    goto11 - you don't play guitar that good. Otherwise, I would have heard of you by now.
    1- You can't replace watching a film in a theater by streaming a shitty rip online; so... 2- This is stupid, and only makes people dislike the MPAA more. 3- The best things come in threes, MPAA suckling on a big, angry, Scottish boaby is one of them.
    I think you've been misinformed about the quality of pirated movies (likely by those anti piracy ads persuading you to go to the cinema), they're generally as good as the original blu rays. That's not to say I don't prefer the theater experience, but implying all rips online are inferior to the quality of a home movie release is incorrect. I tend to keep digital copies of my stuff along with the originals as it's much more convenient (and I can manage it all with my Plex library). Discs are just so awkward..
    I don't think you understand. Megaupload had some shitty ass rips. I download in high res all the time. I was talking about Megaupload. IT'S ONLY MEGAUPLOAD GUYS I'M SORRY I INSULTED YOUR PRECIOUS TORRENT SITE :C
    That's silly. I can get fine rips for almost anything, and it's on par with the experience of watching literally anything in my home versus on a big screen.
    I lol'd at the title for multiple obvious reasons.
    especially "In sum, the impact of these seizures was massive and the hub landscape is still recovering." Im pretty sure piracy was hurt for maybe a day untill mediafire and rapidshare increased users
    Megaupload does not make the government nor any of these organizations right. I for one do not like the idea of the gov being able to shut down websites on a whim. This sets precedent and it will only become easier for them as time goes on.
    The company had been charged with five different counts concerning copyright infringement and money laundering. According to the indictment, Megaupload's offenses include: 1. Running, which streams copyright infringed television shows and movies 2. Willfully reproduced and distributed copyrighted content on its servers 3. Offering money as an incentive to upload infringing content between the dates of Septmeber 2005 and July 2011 4. Not terminating copyright offending accounts, as it states it can do in the Megaupload terms of service 5. Made no significant effort to identify users of the site, uploaders of copyrighted content, or the content itself. Money laundering and racketeering are the primary charges in the indictment, not piracy, although piracy charges are part of the complaint. I think they deserved to be shutdown, and I don't think the same will happen to all others...
    Just so you know I countered every point of that in a massive reply but it failed to post and I didnt copy it so im now too pissed to reply with it all again...
    So which record label do you work for? How can after all these years, people not see how the RIAA and MPAA are screwing us? I'd also like to focus on number 4... In Megauploads ToS it stated they they reserved the right, not that that would be the ultimate end result. Also I'm a Kopimist. Filesharing, and the right to be able to learn, hear, see, experience anything and everything i want to, to learn and grow emotionally and intellectually, is a religious right for me.
    Getting rid of Megaupload is like squishing a pregnant spider, 100's of new sites spawn in its place.
    If they are counting THIS as a success i'd love to see what they call a massive failure. Ignoring the illegal way in which they took down the mega corp and the fact it was used by many as a legitimate means of data housing... By taking down Mega all it did was drive the traffic to various other sources. Mega was one of thousands that do those services, it was the largest one yes, but with it's removal all that happened was the users went to other sites. As for the legitimate users, they were left without their data, many of which were used by small businesses and some larger ones. I agree with what they want but definitely not in how they aim to achieve it. Until they learn about the internet and users patterns they will NEVER achieve a "massive success".
    This isn't exactly true. Many filesharing sites completely changed their policies and got a whole lot stricter on files. Rapidshare which is the biggest File hosting site, made it pretty much impossible for free users to download files and just recently put bandwidth limits on all it's users, making it very hard to mass share a large file through the service. Many Filehosting sites just shut down or only allowed the original uploader to download a file. Megaupload being shutdown had a huge effect on the file host industry, one that it has only just started recovering from. It is only a setback though, the industry has started to recover from it and in the end it's going to hurt Record Companies pretty bad since shutting down megu upload has allowed KimDotCom to make a new website and service which he will soon release. It will allow musicians to sell their music straight to the public with very small middleman fees. Self Publishing is about to become a lot more viable for musicians and record companies are going to have to offer artists better deals to be able to complete if it takes off.
    Just so you know, He was working on that middleman plan a long time before the Mega incident, I remember actually telling someone I think they targeted him a lot harder since that. Anyway on to my point. You are completely correct about the stricter file sharing however that is not what I was getting at. The people they wanted to deter was both the people allowing it to be hosted and the people abusing it. Since Mega had no way to know what was put up due to privacy laws it was simple to keep pushing for them to be taken down, this sent a message and you know the response to file hosting services. (Which is also quite sad as a LOT of rare LEGAL videos were likely lost. (Very old shows that some fans managed to save)). The second target, the users. This is where it failed completely. All it did was push them to more sources. Imagine you have the entire populus of an infestation in one little segment of a room. You decide instead of eradicating this infestation you will eradicate the small area they are on. As a result this infestation spreads to every corner of the room and now you have a nightmare of a task to get them. If they wanted to do this right they should have worked WITH mega to catch the uploaders who were breaking the law rather than attacking the service that enabled it by not breakinbg privacy laws. My solution would be this. Let someone post the bad files, track their username, catch them instead.
    Megaupload was always my second choice in terms of file hosting. The wait on downloading was annoying. Mediafire 4 life. Now, if they go after Mediafire... I swear to god. Warpath.
    I don't see how this could even make a dent in piracy with all the other torrenting/hosting sites out there.
    As much as I'm anti-piracy, I think shutting down sites is just wrong.
    GOD DAMMIT MegaUpload was full of legit files that didn't violate copyright. I still mourn the loss every time someone brings it up.
    Oh no they shut down a major upload website? Good thing this hasn't effected my habit of downloading stuff for free whatsoever... Success?
    Yes it's great to know we actually wasted that many resources with helicopters and vans to arrest a fat guy in a mansion.
    All this did, at least for me, was make it a pain in the ass to watch most anime online. But at this point, most videos have been restored on another site. As stated before, it's just a pain in the ass, so why even do it? It has nothing to do with whether or not I'm gunna go see an overpriced movie at a packed movie theater with a 10 dollar popcorn, I could fill my damn bedroom up with 10 dollars worth of popcorn from the grocery store. I wish companies would blame more shit than just the internet...
    Streaming anime is pretty pointless nowadays. Considering most series aren't going to be released for outside markets it hardly makes a difference if you download it.
    I'm a very active internet pirate and uhh...don't think I ever used either of those websites. So...well done I guess.
    Why do people always make mention of the DDoS attacks in articles like these? DDoS attacks are super easy, pointless, and accomplish nothing but we always feel like mentioning them, like to feel that people are sticking it to the man or something.
    Say what you want, but Megaupload knowingly hosted TONS of illegal content. Blame them, not the MPAA.
    Did you know that you can find even more illegal content in Youtube for example. It's submitted by the users just like it was in Megaupload. Would it be nice if any site could be taken down for a reason like that?
    I agree with that. MU was getting money for the purpose of stealing other peoples' work and I believe that's wrong. BUT, the problem I, and a lot of other people, had was what was done about it. Vans, helicopters, the swat team, an international extraditing mission, just to capture a guy who runs a website. Makes me feel like I should be more afraid of downloading music than murdering someone. And that really shows how much power corporations like the MPAA have on the country, even the world.
    Aaaah, the sweet, sweet ignorance. MPAA is hellbent on basically destroying the Internet.
    You can find illegal content on pretty much any media site. If you happen to find one that doesn't, let the MPAA know and they'll have the laws altered accordingly.
    Thieves suck.
    Depends what they're stealing. I personally used Megaupload mostly for movies and TV shows, and never felt a bit of remorse watching people act for free. Stealing music however is different because the world NEEDS music. Anything I download I buy anyways if it's good enough. (I have the largest CD collection of everyone I know, and growing.)
    link no1
    Stealing TV shows, I don't see much of a problem with this considering there are so many legal free services available these days to watch TV shows (alongside re-runs and stuff like Sky anytime and BBC iplayer) it shouldn't matter if somebody downloads them to say, shove on their Ipod and watch on the go. Personal opinion Obviously. In the case of films, I feel I should have to pay for them to see them in the theater (the best place to see them) and that I may aswell pay for the DvD aswell since I can usually get them from Amazon for less than 1 anyway. Music should also be paid for. Yes, bands should be in it for the music but if you want them to stick around and keep making you some bad-ass songs and tour then they are going to need funding for this. They might have gotten into it for the music but for many it has become a career, just because they love their job doesn't mean they shouldn't be paid for doing it.
    If there are so many legal free services available, WHT would one need to steal it then?
    No, Stealing is it a song, an actors performance, a painting, or cash,...stealing is stealing.
    Obviously you're a good natured person if your concept on larceny is so black and white.. You have to consider though, that sometimes the one who sells the product isn't always taking their fair share...
    I can't see how a double standard like that works out for you... and you are not stealing anyway. Stealing implies that the original owner no longer has access to the "stolen" item. Filesharing is actually copying. Also if you download but do not upload you are technically not breaking any laws. Uploading copyrighted content is what most people get sued for, and they often times didnt understand that that was what they were doing while they were torrenting or limewireing or what have you
    Um, I downloaded something from Megaupload a week ago. WTF did they exactly shut down?
    I don't know what website you used but that wasn't megaupload. Might want to scan that download.
    "Blah Blah Blah we did it we are the best we we w--" SHUT UP! If you were capable of anything and really cared about internet piracy you would have actually shut down that shameful Pirate Bay.
    The world is our ocean, our computers are the ports. yo ho ho a pirates life for me
    Just shows how arrogant and naive they are thinking shutting down one site is going to make a difference when there are literally hundreds of file sharing sites out there that will easily take it's place. People will just migrate to those. Congratulations on their 'huge success' though if it makes them feel better to call it that...
    This Megaupload shit is stirring up quite a bit in New Zealand. Kim Dotcom who is at the centre of the investigation here was possibly arrested under illegal circumstances (our version of the "secret service" are technically only allowed to use their powers for non-NZ citizens, Kim Dotcom however IS a NZ citizen, and attempts are still trying to be made to extradite him to the US. It all smells of bullshit, clearly they've just provided a service that a select few (million haha) have abused
    Hahahaha, megabox is coming around the corner I can't believe they really feel successful
    The MPAA and the RIAA are stupid if they think shutting down a couple of sites is going to make an impact on pirating. Not only are there still tons of other sites out there, but for every site they shut down another one pops up. They need to just give up already.
    I hate it when I'm looking for help from some old forum thread. "Hey you can fix your problem by downloading this free patch file from this megaupload link!" *Fffuuuu....* I never even used megaupload to download anything illegal, I think it was great for sharing some of my own files... Damn you MPAA
    As long as they don't shut down The Pirate Bay I don't give a **** what they do. Even if they did though, it wouldn't be hard to find another site to download from.
    Well of course they're going to call it a success. It's self-promotion at its finest.
    I heard from a friend that the owner got life (or a LOT) of time in prison with no parole - if that's true then i think things were blown WAY out of proportion
    Well, if you think about it , it's pretty much stealing , how much money in album sales did get the bands for? Fuck him I hope they all go to prison. Maybe these sites will shut down and things will go back the way they were when bands actually sold millions of albums and had careers instead of touring 11 months out of the year to make ends meet
    Piracy like this hasn't really affected the sales rates, at least not anywhere near the levels groups like the MPAA and RIAA would like you to believe. The overall shoddy quality of music (even for pop music) is more to blame, as is an overall resistance to adopting new technologies. The vast majority of bands pretty much for the entire history of recorded music always made more money touring than they ever could selling albums. Albums are more like a promo package to get people to come to the shows more than anything.
    Lets reserve our prisons for actual criminals. Seriously, some people out there are actually dangerous, y'know, like murderers and such? It might be a little smarter to put this much effort into stopping people like them instead... Just a thought..
    Doesn't the megaupload guy have a new very similar site? I'm sure I read that about a month ago.
    They need to shut ALL of these torrent sites down!! Doesn't anyone remember going out and actually BUYING an album when it came out instead of ripping off all the artists? What if you worked all month long and your job said "Ya know, we aren't gonna pay you for this month, but we're gonna send you out on the road and maybe you will make a commission if you're good" .. Then people why so many artists don't make music anymore, regardless of what some people think, it costs A LOT of $$$$ to do an album, and do you think the artist gets any of that back?. Hell no!! They tour just to stay a float. I know how it is!!
    You do realize torrents are also used for ****ing work and alot of other legal reasons, right?
    Just so you know, its cheaper and easier than it's ever been to make your own music, even in cd format. A lot easier than it was when people used to go out and actually 'buy an album'... The sad truth is, there's no money in music, which is fine because its an art. Let people who are passionate about music create music, those people will make music no matter how much it costs to record your own album..
    The proof is the number of bands today compared to a few years ago, now you can record your own album with a cheap mixer and a laptop, a few years back the only people who made cds were those with record labels. Today you have literally millions of underground bands, they all seem to make cds fine without selling anything. If they're reallt talented or passionate, then theyll always return to make more music. (maybe not always)
    Even cheaper than that actually. There are a lot of mixer programs online. All you need is a decent mic and a computer and you are set lol
    the pirate bay can't be taken down because it's in the cloud in several different countries. not impossible but very hard. it's gonna very hard to stop internet piracy. This is very similar to the war on drugs. You can make them illegal but people will eventually find a way to do it. It's an un-winnable war which infringes our rights.
    Megaupload was kind of a terrible website anyway, there are better sites than Megaupload, so good riddance.
    The funniest thing I can think of about this is that if they wanted to catch the people uploading them they cannot do so now. The reasoning is as follows. You cannot use illegally seized assets in court, the NZ authorities already stated their spying was illegal, thus anything based upon that becomes invalid and their search warrants and seizure warrants have already been declared illegal by a court. This also means that by the fruit of a poisoned tree rule they cannot use ANYTHING about the servers or data they seized to do ANYTHING. Meaning it doesn't matter how hard they fight it at this point, the people responsible are already guaranteed to get away with it. Thanks American government (and FBI), you don't think things through.