Megaupload: a boon to users but a bane for copyright holders

Jan 20, 2012

The website Megaupload.com, which was shut down by US authorities over copyright violations, is among the world's most popular filesharing and streaming websites with a reported 50 million users a day.

But for copyright holders in the music, television or , the embodies theft and of cultural works.

Here are some facts about the website:

What kinds of services does Megaupload offer?

The Hong Kong-based site and its different domains such as MegaVideo, offers to host files for free or for a fee if they exceed a certain size.

All kinds of files are can be uploaded including music, film, books or software files. Once they are online, they can be downloaded by other users for free.

The website also offers streaming of films and , much like or Dailymotion. Streaming is a more popular practice as it is not illegal, contrary to downloading.

Is Megaupload unique?

Dozens of other websites offer exactly the same kind of service, such as Rapidshare, Filesonic, Fileserve or Depositfiles. However, Megaupload has become the most popular of them all as it is easy to use.

In a promotional video broadcast on line in December, Megaupload claims to have 50 million users a day.

This video is not supported by your browser at this time.

According to figures posted in July 2011, the filesharing site was the 91st most visited website in the world with 34 million unique visitors and 500 million page views.

MegaVideo was at 129th place with 26 million unique visitors and 300 million page views.

Are all Megaupload content illegal?

The site undoubtedly hosts some legal content. Popular with Hollywood celebrities, music stars such as Kanye West and Will.i.am count among music stars who appeared in its promotional video.

Nevertheless, it is clear that among the content are files that have been shared illegally.

In its defence, the website said it was impossible for it to check everything it hosts.

US authorities has charged that the website generated more than $175 million in criminal proceeds and caused more than $500 million in harm to copyright owners by offering pirated copies of movies, TV programmes and other content.

Explore further: LinkedIn membership hits 300 million

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Treasure haul as N.Z. police raid Megaupload guru

Jan 20, 2012

New Zealand police on Friday seized a pink Cadillac and a sawn-off shotgun, and froze millions of dollars in cash, after a raid on the fortified mansion of an Internet guru accused of online piracy.

US shutdown of sharing site draws hacker retaliation

Jan 20, 2012

US authorities have shut down one of the largest file-sharing websites and charged seven people with copyright crimes, sparking a retaliatory cyber attack on the FBI and Justice Department websites. ...

NZ police raid file-sharing site founder's mansion

Jan 20, 2012

New Zealand police raided several homes and businesses linked to the founder of Megaupload.com, a giant file-sharing site shut down by U.S. authorities, on Friday and seized guns, millions of dollars, and ...

Dutch court orders Pirate Bay to remove links

Oct 22, 2009

A Dutch court Thursday ordered Sweden's The Pirate Bay filesharing website to remove links to works of members of a Netherlands-based music and film copyright protection group.

Recommended for you

LinkedIn membership hits 300 million

Apr 18, 2014

The career-focused social network LinkedIn announced Friday it has 300 million members, with more than half the total outside the United States.

Researchers uncover likely creator of Bitcoin

Apr 18, 2014

The primary author of the celebrated Bitcoin paper, and therefore probable creator of Bitcoin, is most likely Nick Szabo, a blogger and former George Washington University law professor, according to students ...

White House updating online privacy policy

Apr 18, 2014

A new Obama administration privacy policy out Friday explains how the government will gather the user data of online visitors to WhiteHouse.gov, mobile apps and social media sites. It also clarifies that ...

User comments : 2

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Xbw
1.4 / 5 (19) Jan 20, 2012
This article is rife with grammatical errors.

That is besides the point however. As stated by another poster in a related story - "You don't punish the bank for what's in someone's deposit box."
RonPaul1
1.3 / 5 (15) Jan 20, 2012
This makes some people want to start paramilitary groups, because they are tired of the government. >:)

More news stories

Ex-Apple chief plans mobile phone for India

Former Apple chief executive John Sculley, whose marketing skills helped bring the personal computer to desktops worldwide, says he plans to launch a mobile phone in India to exploit its still largely untapped ...

Airbnb rental site raises $450 mn

Online lodging listings website Airbnb inked a $450 million funding deal with investors led by TPG, a source close to the matter said Friday.

Health care site flagged in Heartbleed review

People with accounts on the enrollment website for President Barack Obama's signature health care law are being told to change their passwords following an administration-wide review of the government's vulnerability to the ...

A homemade solar lamp for developing countries

(Phys.org) —The solar lamp developed by the start-up LEDsafari is a more effective, safer, and less expensive form of illumination than the traditional oil lamp currently used by more than one billion people ...

NASA's space station Robonaut finally getting legs

Robonaut, the first out-of-this-world humanoid, is finally getting its space legs. For three years, Robonaut has had to manage from the waist up. This new pair of legs means the experimental robot—now stuck ...

Filipino tests negative for Middle East virus

A Filipino nurse who tested positive for the Middle East virus has been found free of infection in a subsequent examination after he returned home, Philippine health officials said Saturday.

Egypt archaeologists find ancient writer's tomb

Egypt's minister of antiquities says a team of Spanish archaeologists has discovered two tombs in the southern part of the country, one of them belonging to a writer and containing a trove of artifacts including reed pens ...