Big Content has told the Office of the US Trade Representative that the shutdown of Megaupload was hugely successful.
Now it wants the US government to conduct similar action against The Pirate Bay, Extratorrent, isoHunt, Kat.ph and several other file-hosting and linking sites.
According to TorrentFreak, the MPAA told the US Government that as a direct result of the Megaupload takedown many other “rogue” sites were rendered useless.
MPAA’s Michael O’Leary said that when Megaupload.com and Megavideo.com 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.
For example, Wupload.com disabled file sharing. Affiliate programs that paid uploaders for content were also discontinued or removed by many hubs.
Infringing content was purged by operators in bulk, which was followed by uploaders who deleted their own files to prevent the hubs from profiting on the uploads without paying incentives, O’Leary wrote.
While this might be true, the report fails to mention the fact that the Megaupload take down might have been illegal. Already, it is starting to look like the evidence presented to shut down the company might have been fixed. The Justice Department told Megaupload to hang onto some files for an investigation and then charged the company for holding onto pirated content.
The New Zealand extradition hearing against Megaupload’s founder Kim Dotcom is floundering after it was found that the police acted illegally in raiding his home.
If the shutdowns are found to be illegal, the MPAA paper is simply saying that if the government acts illegally it can shut down websites at the request of the movie studios on the basis of spectral evidence. Something most people will have worked out.
The MPAA also ignored the effect the shut downs may have had on many legitimate businesses.
In a recent blog post MPAA’s head of research, Julia Jenks, said the Megaupload shutdown might not be all that positive for the industry itself either.