Monday, January 23, 2012

The takedown of Megaupload

And more importantly, why a lot of people are thinking of it the wrong way. Unfortunately it seems that most people are making two mistakes. First, they seem to be connecting this takedown to the crazy uprising against SOPA. And as a result they are making this move of taking down Megaupload seem like something terribly wrong.

They are all wrong.

Taking down Megaupload was perfectly legal, but also coincidental with the massive uprising; I don’t believe it has everything to do with said opposition to SOPA. The important thing is that opposing the move to take Megaupload down doesn’t make any sense and it just shows how woefully ignorant most people are of the facts.

Firstly, this isn’t how SOPA is supposed to work. This is exactly how SOPA doesn’t need to work. If SOPA is passed then they don’t need to go on gung ho missions arresting some hick way out in the boondocks just to get a site shut down. They are free to remove the site from the directory of internet addresses inside the USA while granting protection to the ISPs, aka providing indemnification against any and all law cases.

Second, the evidence against the Megaupload CEO and his employees is absolutely solid. And this is by far the most important point. Emails captured shows communication between employees displaying their knowledge of the pirated content on their website and advocating the use of it as well. If that wasn’t bad enough, in their allocation of uploader reward points, inspection of accounts shows that they had knowledge that the uploaders were guilty of uploading a few movies, some porn videos and several key generators/cracks. Yet they still went ahead with the allocation of uploader points and thereby directly supported piracy within their file sharing network. Despite all their publicity stunts of them wanting to take down other file sharing sites saying that Megaupload is the only one that actually respects take down notices, the evidence shows that they were probably amongst the worst offenders themselves.

Third, the evidence being collected against Megaupload has been in the making for two years. That isn’t something that took place just yesterday in time for the uprising against SOPA. The people behind the takedown really waited it out for the right moment to sting and whether or not there were external powers at hand wanting to send a message to the people calling for the death of SOPA the fact remains that there is no direct connection to the taking down of Megaupload. The take down was simply an act of justice and one that is absolutely justifiable.

Finally, I see a lot of people also forgetting the core concept that piracy is not a good thing. Apparently because musicians and movie directors are living on piles of money, its ok to steal their works that they put a lot of time and effort into creating. Granted, the media industry is full of backward folk but that doesn’t give anyone the right to say that piracy is something that shouldn’t be looked at as a bad thing. Piracy is stealing and if you are ok with that then good day to you. Quit supporting the people who are against Megaupload. It hurts us who are trying to stop bills like SOPA going through. It doesn’t work that way. When people oppose things like the Megaupload takedown it just goes to show that the majority of people really don’t know what they are talking about and that’s the reason people in congress and the senate aren’t sure whether or not to take most of this opposition seriously. It seems like every time there’s some bill related to anti piracy, most people call it Armageddon and immediately ask for it to be taken off. It’s not like anyone suggests any viable solutions either. How do you take a bunch of people seriously when all they do is complain about every solution proposed to stop piracy. How do you take them seriously when they never seem to be satisfied and never seem to provide any good solution themselves? How do you take them seriously when they begin complaining even when a completely legitimate takedown such as that done with Megaupload is also opposed. When people fail to make sense and simply sound like a pack of brainless parrots in an echo chamber, the effectiveness of the real message that genuine people are trying to spread gets lost.

Here’s a little something to think about. How many people do you honestly think, who upvoted all those posts about SOPA and PIPA on 9Gag, actually took the time to study the bills and find out what really makes them such a disaster? My bet is very few. If there were really a bunch of people who were serious about this then the posts about Megaupload probably would not have really bubbled to the top. Bottom line. Take some time to think before just opposing everything that comes down the pipeline. I made that mistake and I can guarantee you. When it eventually hits, you really understand how foolish it all is.

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