I can't believe it's been almost six months since Megaupload was taken down by the feds and Kim Dotcom was arrested for criminal copyright infringement and other horrible things. It's been a roller coaster full of twists and turns since then, but it might all be coming to a head soon if the U.S. court throws out the case against Megaupload. Of course, legitimate users of Megaupload are still screwed over unless the court lets them access their files.
Those legitimate users now have a friend in the MPAA. I know, I couldn't believe it myself. In the past, the organization wanted access to Megaupload's servers so that it could sue those who were using the service to illegally distribute films.
In a response to Megaupload user poster boy Kyle Goodwin, the MPAA filed a motion in court that said the members are "sympathetic to legitimate users who may have relied on Megaupload to store their legitimately acquired or created data." That seems so nice of them. I would think there would be some sort of catch or something. Oh wait, here it is:
However, the MPAA Members’ position continues to be that if the Court is willing to consider allowing access for users such as Mr. Goodwin to allow retrieval of files, it is essential that the mechanism include a procedure that ensures that any materials the users access and copy or download are notfiles that have been illegally uploaded to their accounts, given that MPAA Members and other rights holders are certain to own the copyrights in many of the files stored on the servers.
Apparently, the MPAA thinks that people only shared movies over Megaupload. It's hilarious because movies would have to be split into parts on Megauplaod due to file size restrictions. Even if Megaupload was used to share movies, it would be obvious that torrents and other file sharing services with larger file caps would be more popular for such activities.
So if the MPAA is being this nice to the regular user, are they willing to show the same sympathy to Dotcom and the other defendants. These guys need the data that's on their servers as evidence to protect themselves. Surely the sympathetic MPAA would show the same kindess to Megaupload. Oh wait, I forgot, it's the MPAA and they don't like Megaupload:
In addition, in no event should any Megaupload defendants or their representatives—who have not generally appeared in this proceeding, and who are not subject to the control and supervision of the Court—be allowed to access the Mega Servers under such a mechanism designed for the benefit of third party Megaupload users. Whether and under what conditions the Mega defendants should have access to the servers (again, assuming they are subject to the control of the Court) is a separate issue.
So the MPAA is sympathetic to normal users and still hates Megaupload. It's a start and oen that will hopefully play out to see legitimate users have their files returned to them. It's good to see the MPAA perhaps turning over a new leaf. It's like when MPAA head boss Chris Dodd said that they should stop referring to piracy as theft. Oh wait, Dodd was just saying that to push a new SOPA later on without the backlash that the first try received. It seems that the same fine print tactic is being used in this case as well:
In short, the MPAA Members take no position on whether the Court should or should not exercise its equitable jurisdiction to respond to Mr. Goodwin’s request. Our concerncontinues to be simply that if the Court were to allow such access, steps must be taken to ensure that the unauthorized copies of copyrighted content on the Mega Servers are not allowed to enterthe stream of commerce.
In all reality, the MPAA is just saying, "We're cool if you want to get your files back, but we're not going to petition for it or anything. But hey, at least we're pals, right?" All of this just means that we're right back where we started. The courts still have to decide on whether or not to keep the data while the MPAA makes silly demands.Ars Technica]