Protect IP Act (PIPA - S.968) and Stop Online Privacy Act (SOPA – H.R.3261) and all that Megaupload

busybeeburns

mr coldplaying himself
Founder
Coldplayer
Joined
Sep 8, 2002
Messages
43,803


Feds slam Megaupload with indictment and racketeering charges, Anonymous retaliates

The United States Department of Justice has issued a statement confirming that it has arrested seven individuals connected to popular file-sharing site Megaupload and its various subsidiaries. The alleged criminals and two corporations named in the complaint are charged with generating more than $175 million in profits through racketeering, conspiracy to commit copyright infringement, conspiring to commit money laundering, and two substantial counts of copyright infringement. The individuals, including Megaupload founder Kim Schmitz, face up to 20 years in prison if convicted.

One might expect a file locker site to shield itself behind the DMCA’s “safe harbor” provision that protects websites from copyright infringement committed by their users so long as they comply with the copyright takedown notifications. According to the indictment, Megaupload was structured in a way that promoted the distribution of copyrighted material. (We have a PDF here, as the DoJ’s site is currently down.)

The indictment alleges that the site was structured to discourage the vast majority of its users from using Megaupload for long-term or personal storage by automatically deleting content that was not regularly downloaded. The conspirators further allegedly offered a rewards program that would provide users with financial incentives to upload popular content and drive web traffic to the site, often through user-generated websites known as linking sites. The conspirators allegedly paid users whom they specifically knew uploaded infringing content and publicized their links to users throughout the world.

The DOJ also alleges that the conspirators failed to terminate the accounts of known copyright infringers, “selectively complied” with orders to remove copyrighted content, and misrepresented whether content had actually been deleted by disabling particular identified links to a file rather than erasing the file itself. These allegations go far beyond the normal scope of copyright infringement lawsuits — such cases are nearly always civil rather than criminal.

Not all publicity is good publicity

Megaupload was in the news last month after UMG abused the DMCA to force YouTube to withdraw a music video praising the service that featured a number of prominent musicians. Megaupload came out the winner as far as the court of public opinion was concerned, but the federal indictment makes note of the websites 150 million registered users, 50 million daily visitors, and 4% share of Internet traffic — all of which were disclosed in the music video.

Furthermore, the site’s founder, Kim Schmitz (aka Kimble, Kim Dotcom, and Kim Tim Jim Vestor) isn’t likely to cut a sympathetic figure at trial. Schmitz was convicted of computer fraud and handling stolen goods in 1998 and of embezzlement and insider trading in 2003 (his pump-and-dump stock scam left two other companies bankrupt). In 2010, he bought a $30 million house in New Zealand, said to be one of the most expensive in the country.

This is not a man who understands the value of being small, and his personal history adds credence to the idea that the Feds aren’t blowing smoke on this own or acting on behalf of the entertainment industry. Not that such minutiae stopped Anonymous.

Mega [email protected]#$-up

Less than two hours after the Feds announced they’d arrested Schmitz and taken MegaUpload offline, Anonymous retaliated by attacking riaa.org, universalmusic.com and justice.gov. All four sites are currently offline.

Anonymous “operative” Barret Brown told RT.com that ““It was in retaliation for Megaupload,” that “more is coming” and that this was part of an effort to “damage campaign raising abilities of remaining Democrats who support SOPA.”

Slow down, folks.

We’ve written quite a bit about SOPA here at ExtremeTech and I’ve made my own opinion clear: It’s a terribly written law. It’s also got nothing to do with the DoJ’s execution of this indictment. The decision in question was handed down on January 5. That means the case went before a grand jury for discussion and deliberation at some prior date.

Grand jury indictments don’t get handed out on the basis of a 30 minute PowerPoint presentation and the US doesn’t coordinate extensively with New Zealand law enforcement to make arrests at the drop of a hat. This isn’t a knee-jerk retaliation for the SOPA protests. It’s possible that some of the Congressional debates were scheduled to coincide with the government’s arrests, but these are scarcely trumped up charges.

There’s a difference between putting unjust power in the hands of private actors and achieving millionaire status on the backs of artists and filmmakers who aren’t being paid for their work. There’s a difference between hauling individual citizens into court and charging them outrageous infringement fees and asking the law to properly protect your company from mass theft. All too often, the RIAA and MPAA have been on the wrong side of that line — but that doesn’t mean they’re on the wrong side of it today.

http://www.extremetech.com/internet/114741-feds-slam-megaupload-with-indictment
 

R23

New Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Sep 15, 2009
Messages
1,013
I don't feel comfortable with all this news about the freedom and privacy on the internet. Megaupload was huge, you have to ask what's next. And I don't want to think about what happens when the PIPA and/or SOPA acts come through... :confused:
 

Kiame

الى السماء
Coldplayer
Joined
Jul 11, 2011
Messages
1,353
But they couldn't.

The existence of power necessitates the bidding for power. Money isn't the problem (as you and Chuck Kottke believe it is). You'll never get rid of money, because it's a natural effect of human trade. The real problem is the power.
Money is power. Money allows you to buy out half of congress to vote for you.

Money is the sole reason this has happening.

Every piece of anti-piracy legislation that has been passed to date has been instigated and lobbied for by private companies who are manipulating government. Not one act, bill or statue dealing with piracy has been passed solely off the back of the Government without intervention by the private sector.

Governments are terrified of the internet (for obvious reasons).
No they aren't. If this were true than PIPA and SOPA and all the others would be passed already. Government and a small group of US citizens are the only people fighting for this right now. Even Obama is - who has released two official statements saying he does not and will not support something that restricts the freedom of information.

But of course, when someone tells you this you just roll your eyes and say "HE IS LYING" and ignore how much resistance towards these acts actually exists inside government.

Yes they do. Sales of Lady Gaga CD's generate tax revenue.
Exactly and they will continue to do so whether piracy legislation is in place or not. A lot of data suggests that anti-piracy laws seldom even effect music sales. The only people who suffer when there is freedom of sharing music are the music companies themselves because if does effect their hold on the industry.

And that's what this issue is about. It's about having control of media and setting up a monopoly. I've explained to you how during the 20th centuries several film, TV, music and print companies virtually had a monopoly because of the limited amount of competition.

The government aren't hurting because of digital sharing. Not even one bit. You only say this because you say government is to blame about every single issue. It's incredibly ironic considering in this issue many members of government are actually helping a lot and are our only shot.

What about the government? Do people in government not care about money?.
Of course they do and that's why a small few of them accept "sponsorship" (bribes) from people like Rupert Murdoch.

Do they not have families with kids in their 20's who are looking for jobs? Do they not make a lot of friends high-up in corporations who might give these 20-year-olds jobs?.
This issue could all be fixed by making it illegal for congressmen to accept donations from third parties. Do that, and the whole thing is over. Give congressmen a salary and take "sponsorship" out of the question. Make congressmen accountable to the people from their electorate. No more PIPA or SOPA.

"Sponsorship" is nothing but a way for a private entity to manipulate power through their money. It is never in the interests of the middle-lower classes. NEVER.

Get rid of it. Getting rid of it would also prevent people from getting into congress in an attempt to find ludicrous amounts of fortune and it would keep their motives pure. They'd be there because they care about issues and they care about representing their electorate. They wouldn't simply be in place to take millions from Sony to co sponsor PIPA. Or take millions from investment banking firms (Goldman Sachs) to vote in line with their selfish ideas.

There is no grand conspiracy here. It's just the natural effects of having a monopolist cartel (government).
Oh this isn't a conspiracy at all. It's all in the open and attempts to hide it are non existent. This is reality.
 

Saffire

Classically liberal.
Coldplayer
Joined
Mar 14, 2005
Messages
4,349
Money is power.
Money is a medium of exchange. Stop trying to redefine words to suit your arguments.

Every piece of anti-piracy legislation that has been passed to date has been instigated and lobbied for by private companies who are manipulating government. Not one act, bill or statue dealing with piracy has been passed solely off the back of the Government without intervention by the private sector.
"Private" and "public" are not clear distinctions.

All individual humans are "private" people who are working to further their self-interests. They will use the government (a territorial monopolist of coercion) to accomplish their ends.

You cannot abolish mediums of exchange (money) without destroying the structures of production that allow us to live in a society of abundance. However, you can limit the power of government by reducing its size. This is the goal of libertarians like Ron Paul.

But of course, when someone tells you this you just roll your eyes and say "HE IS LYING" and ignore how much resistance towards these acts actually exists inside government.
Your problem is you find it unfathomable that people might not trust someone who has lied dramatically and publicly for years, only to get into office and do the exact opposite of what he said he'd do.

The government aren't hurting because of digital sharing. Not even one bit. You only say this because you say government is to blame about every single issue. It's incredibly ironic considering in this issue many members of government are actually helping a lot and are our only shot.
Without the government there wouldn't be a problem. The government is the enforcement apparatus. It forces taxpayers to finance its operations, something corporations cannot do.

Of course they do and that's why a small few of them accept "sponsorship" (bribes) from people like Rupert Murdoch.
And maybe George Soros? Goldman Sachs? Solyndra?

You're revealing yourself to be a leftist, here.

What's your solution to this problem? "Pass more laws." Sorry, tried that. Didn't work.

Statists always use circular arguments to support their theory of ideal government - "We can force them to pass laws to keep themselves well-behaved!" No, you can't.

Do that, and the whole thing is over. Give congressmen a salary and take "sponsorship" out of the question. Make congressmen accountable to the people from their electorate. No more PIPA or SOPA.
How easy do you think this would be, in the current structure?

My guess is, a bloody revolution would actually require less friction to implement than the utopian laws you and Chuck regularly propose on these forums.

Get rid of it. Getting rid of it would also prevent people from getting into congress in an attempt to find ludicrous amounts of fortune and it would keep their motives pure.
A long time ago, congressmen didn't earn that much. Yet they still started unnecessary wars, committed genocides, raised taxes, banned peaceful trade/substances, and unilaterally raised their own salaries.

I think you're confused about the "chicken/egg" - which comes first? The money or the power?

Here's a hint: Do you see money naturally flowing toward people who have very little political power? Or do you see it flowing naturally toward people who *already* have power?

Or take millions from investment banking firms (Goldman Sachs) to vote in line with their selfish ideas.
Didn't you say you supported Obama in the other thread? How do you square that with your acknowledgement that he takes millions from Goldman Sachs? Just curious.

Oh this isn't a conspiracy at all. It's all in the open and attempts to hide it are non existent. This is reality.
Something tells me you don't really believe it, though. You're still under the illusion that government can be tamed, and made to serve the masses...
 

chuck kottke

Gearwork for Clocks
Coldplayer
Joined
Jun 28, 2006
Messages
8,417
It is the excess of money coming from a few that is corrupting our democracy. When legislation is written by and for interest groups, often consortiums of industry, and then pushed through congress, one has only to connect the dots to see who wants what, who's campaigns they paid for, and what lobbying jobs will they dole out when those elected to office "retire" to the big money as lobbyists. So it is with these acts as well - they're fronts for a particular set of big interests. They should get no better or worse billing than the average citizen when it comes to asking for a redress of grievances with our elected government.

There is a legitimate problem, but first the government needs to be equally representative of all constituents, of all citizens. Then it will better play the role of fair arbiter and sensible promoter of the general good as it was intended to do.

And those wars before the big bucks rolled in - corruption is as old as humanity. US sugar in Cuba, big rubber companies in SE Asia, control of shipping through Panama, and the list goes on.. It's time we clamp a lid on the influence of greed in government, and return our government to we, the citizens.
Indeed it is lucrative for those elected to keep taking the legalized bribes, but it isn't beyond the realm of possibilities to replace much of their earnings with legitimate earnings; it would be far more practical than allowing the unchecked system of corruption which allows the wealthiest and least ethical to use our government as a battering ram for their own means against the common good.
 

busybeeburns

mr coldplaying himself
Founder
Coldplayer
Joined
Sep 8, 2002
Messages
43,803

Kim DotCom, aka Kim Schmitz, appears in a New Zealand court to answer to piracy and racketeering charges made against him in the U.S. Click on the photo to watch a news report from New Zealand.

Megaupload assembles worldwide criminal defense

The FBI has begun extradition proceedings in New Zealand to bring Kim Dotcom, aka Kim Schmitz, to the United States to face charges of racketeering, money laundering, and Internet piracy.

DotCom and three associates are in custody and are being held without bail until Monday, when a new hearing is scheduled. Three other alleged accomplices are still at large. During a hearing yesterday, DotCom told the court he didn't object to allowing photographers in the courtroom. He said: "We have nothing to hide."
In an interview with CNET, Ira Rothken, an attorney well known in the tech sector for defending Web sites accused of copyright violations, said that his clients are assembling a team of crack copyright, criminal and technology attorneys to defend them in courts across the globe.

"There are significant issues of due process," Rothken said early this morning. "The government has taken down one of the world's largest storage providers and have done so without giving Megaupload an opportunity to be heard in court."

The U.S. Justice Department has accused DotCom, 37, along with six other people, of operating a huge criminal enterprise as part of his cyberlocker service Megaupload, which over the past several years has emerged as one of the most popular destinations for online video. Federal officials say DotCom and his alleged accomplices pocketed millions of dollars in loot and cost the film industry more than $600 million in damages.

Rothken dismissed the government's attempt to file criminal charges against his clients. "Many of the allegations made are similar to those in the copyright case filed against YouTube and that was a civil case....and YouTube won."

The attorney declined to name any of the other lawyers he is talking to about joining his team but said Megaupload and DotCom will be represented by lawyers who are expert in criminal, copyright and technology law.

"We don't think Megaupload did anything wrong as it regards to copyright issues," Rothken said. "This government's case is wrong on the merits."

Megaupload's site has been shut down and after the arrests were announced, an online group known as Anonymous launched denial-of-service attacks on a number of music and film industry sites as well as the Web site of the Justice Department.

This story is shaping up to be one of the most sensational copyright cases of all time. We have hackers staging online protests at the doorstep of U.S. law enforcement. We have Kim DotCom, a former illegal street racer, hacker, and convicted felon who operates one of the most popular video sites on the Web and who lives in a $30 million mansion in New Zealand.

Finally, we have the U.S. government attempting to test its ability to make criminal copyright cases.

The case appears to have begun when the FBI oversaw raids around the globe. Search warrants were executed in at least 8 countries: across Europe, in Hong Kong, and in New Zealand.

In New Zealand today, TV news was filled with images of police removing property from Schmitz's home, which he named The Dotcom Mansion. Police seized 18 vehicles, including a vintage pink Cadillac, a Lamborghini, a 2010 Maserati, and 2008 Rolls Royce Phantom with a personalized license plate that reads "God."
Some of the other license plates found on the cars read, "Stoned," "Mafia Hacker" and "Guilty."

DotCom was known for his flamboyant lifestyle and partying. He was certainly not hiding out in New Zealand. He threw a New Year's party and paid for a huge fireworks show over Auckland.

Nonetheless, when police came to his door, DotCom tried to evade arrest, according to authorities. "Despite our staff clearly identifying themselves, Mr Dotcom retreated into the house and activated a number of electronic locking mechanisms," Detective Inspector Grant Wormald said in a report from New Zealand news outlet TVNZ. "While police neutralized these locks he then further barricaded himself into a safe room within the house which officers had to cut their way into."

They said they found Dotcom near a sawed-off shotgun but he was arrested without further incident.

http://news.cnet.com/8301-31001_3-57362609-261/megaupload-assembles-worldwide-criminal-defense/
 

busybeeburns

mr coldplaying himself
Founder
Coldplayer
Joined
Sep 8, 2002
Messages
43,803
(as this is nothing to do with SOPA if you want me to split the threads I will)
 

Saffire

Classically liberal.
Coldplayer
Joined
Mar 14, 2005
Messages
4,349
Some of the other license plates found on the cars read, "Stoned," "Mafia Hacker" and "Guilty."
Oh, oh, let me guess: They also found another license plate that reads, "I'm guilty of distributing copyrighted material for personal profit and I rape babies while declaring a War on Christmas and I watch MSNBC".
 

Black Rose

Freedom!
Honorary Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
Jun 21, 2005
Messages
47,952
The record companies can not get around that the simple fact that 1 "illegal" download does not equal 1 lost sale, even though studies have shown that people whom download illegally buy more music.
 

Saffire

Classically liberal.
Coldplayer
Joined
Mar 14, 2005
Messages
4,349
The record companies can not get around that the simple fact that 1 "illegal" download does not equal 1 lost sale, even though studies have shown that people whom download illegally buy more music.
Exactly, exactly, exactly.

This point can't be emphasized enough.
 

Megalomania

Livin' life in Technicolor
Coldplayer
Joined
Feb 15, 2010
Messages
51,246
The record companies can not get around that the simple fact that 1 "illegal" download does not equal 1 lost sale, even though studies have shown that people whom download illegally buy more music.
So true. Illegal downloading of material is good advertisement for companies - if someone likes what they hear/see on a download it pushes them to go buy it.
 

Italian Plastic

lost
Coldplayer
Joined
Mar 21, 2009
Messages
11,169
the shutting down of Megaupload was fucking stupid

it'd be like shutting down Facebook because someone uploaded porn or something? not their fault at all

i hate the world



also, i had no idea he lived in a crazy mansion in new zealand. that's so cool :cheesy:
 

chuck kottke

Gearwork for Clocks
Coldplayer
Joined
Jun 28, 2006
Messages
8,417
I want the pink Cadillac!:p
It's a little strange, having officers from New Zealand arrest someone for extradition to the US to stand trial, I think, for everyone's sake, this ought to be a matter of the international courts. And to think that those with the money to write the laws in their favor rarely ever stand trial, but those who don't do - another reason to take the big money out of politics.
 

Destrokk

Livin' life in Technicolor
Coldplayer
Joined
Sep 21, 2009
Messages
18,789
We should still make some noise about this, even if the bill is dropped :blank: I cant imagine trying to get into music..
 

Cobalt

OH SUCH THE SHAME!
Coldplayer
Joined
Feb 4, 2008
Messages
18,853
Anonymous “operative” Barret Brown told RT.com that ““It was in retaliation for Megaupload,” that “more is coming” and that this was part of an effort to “damage campaign raising abilities of remaining Democrats who support SOPA.”
Fuckin' Barrett Brown, always comes out whenever Anon does something newsworthy and speaks like he is their spokesperson
 

Kiame

الى السماء
Coldplayer
Joined
Jul 11, 2011
Messages
1,353
The record companies can not get around that the simple fact that 1 "illegal" download does not equal 1 lost sale, even though studies have shown that people whom download illegally buy more music.
Exactly, exactly, exactly.

This point can't be emphasized enough.

So true. Illegal downloading of material is good advertisement for companies - if someone likes what they hear/see on a download it pushes them to go buy it.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2011/mar/28/global-recorded-music-sales-fall

That's what they are worried about.

Everything pointed to them having more money if SOPA and PIPA passed. They aren't content with the industry moving away from them into new areas - they want to shackle it down to where it was in the fifties where they all had complete economic control of their expertise not just most.

One illegal download does not equate to one lost sale. This is true. They know this is true. And trust me, these media companies have seen more data than you have seen they are far more aware of what is happening. The issue is about control and greed.

Anyway, SOPA didn't pass thanks to the White House's statements and the public getting behind their government and more and more people not allowing themselves to be pushed over by corporations flashing money. PIPA won't pass either.

Traditional media will continue to fight against government and the people - but they aren't going to get away with as much control as they would like. They will have to settle for less - but I fear with their amount of influence and their amount of money that they will manage to squeeze something out of this.

But with the take down on Megaupload it's kind of a win-lose situation. But it looks like that was going to happen regardless - that site had been targeted for years. This all just shows how much people the people hold. This is one of the only issues people have joined as a collective and spoken for something and overall it has proven to be effective. Imagine what could have been done if the internet community did the same over other things. Like Manning, or the wars in the middle east, or Guantanamo? But they didn't.
 

busybeeburns

mr coldplaying himself
Founder
Coldplayer
Joined
Sep 8, 2002
Messages
43,803
Two lessons from the Megaupload seizure

Commentary from Glenn Greenwald (Salon)

Two events this week produced some serious cognitive dissonance. First, Congressional leaders sheepishly announced that they were withdrawing (at least for the time being) two bills heavily backed by the entertainment industry — the PROTECT IP Act (PIPA) in the Senate and Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) in the House – in the wake of vocal online citizen protests (and, more significantly, coordinated opposition from the powerful Silicon Valley industry). Critics insisted that these bills were dangerous because they empowered the U.S. Government, based on mere accusations of piracy and copyright infringement, to shut down websites without any real due process. But just as the celebrations began over the saving of Internet Freedom, something else happened: the U.S. Justice Department not only indicted the owners of one of the world’s largest websites, the file-sharing site Megaupload, but also seized and shut down that site, and also seized or froze millions of dollars of its assets — all based on the unproved accusations, set forth in an indictment, that the site deliberately aided copyright infringement.

In other words, many SOPA opponents were confused and even shocked when they learned that the very power they feared the most in that bill — the power of the U.S. Government to seize and shut down websites based solely on accusations, with no trial — is a power the U.S. Government already possesses and, obviously, is willing and able to exercise even against the world’s largest sites (they have this power thanks to the the 2008 PRO-IP Act pushed by the same industry servants in Congress behind SOPA as well as by forfeiture laws used to seize the property of accused-but-not-convicted drug dealers). This all reminded me quite a bit of the shock and outrage that arose last month over the fact that Barack Obama signed into law a bill (the NDAA) vesting him with the power to military detain people without charges, even though, as I pointed out the very first time I wrote about that bill, indefinite detention is already a power the U.S. Government under both Bush and Obama has seized and routinely and aggressively exercises.

I’m not minimizing the importance of either fight: it’s true that SOPA (like the NDAA) would codify these radical powers further and even expand them beyond what the U.S. Government already wields (regarding SOPA’s unique provisions, see Julian Sanchez’ typically thorough analysis). But the defining power that had everyone so up in arms about SOPA — shutting down websites with no trial — is one that already exists in quite a robust form, as any thwarted visitors to Megaupload will discover. There are two points worth making about all of this:

(1) It’s wildly under-appreciated how unrestrained is the Government’s power to do what it wants, and how little effect these debates over various proposed laws have on that power. Contrary to how it was portrayed, the Obama administration’s threatened veto of the NDAA rested largely on the assertion that they did not need a law vesting them with indefinite detention powers because they already have full power to detain people without a trial: not because any actual law expressly vested that power, but because the Bush and Obama DOJs both claimed the 2001 AUMF silently (“implicitly”) authorized it and deferential courts have largely acquiesced to that claim. Thus, Obama argued about indefinite detention in his NDAA veto threat that “the authorities codified in this section already exist” and therefore “the Administration does not believe codification is necessary,” and in his Signing Statement Obama similarly asserted that “the executive branch already has the authority to detain in military custody” accused Terrorists “and as Commander in Chief I have directed the military to do so where appropriate.” In other words: we don’t need any law expressly stating that we can imprison people without charges: we do it when we want without that law.

That’s more or less what happened with the SOPA fight. It’s true that website-seizures-without-trials are not quite as lawless as indefinite detentions, since there are actual statutes conferring this power. But it nonetheless sends a very clear message when citizens celebrate a rare victory in denying the Government a power it seeks — the power to shut down websites without a trial — only for the Government to turn around the very next day and shut down one of the world’s largest and best-known sites. Whether intended or not, the message is unmistakable: Congratulations, citizens, on your cute little “democracy” victory in denying us the power to shut down websites without a trial: we’re now going to shut down one of your most popular websites without a trial.

(2) The U.S. really is a society that simply no longer believes in due process: once the defining feature of American freedom that is now scorned as some sort of fringe, radical, academic doctrine. That is not hyperbole. Supporters of both political parties endorse, or at least tolerate, all manner of government punishment without so much as the pretense of a trial, based solely on government accusation: imprisonment for life, renditions to other countries, even assassinations of their fellow citizens. Simply uttering the word Terrorist, without proving it, is sufficient. And now here is Megaupload being completely destroyed — its website shuttered, its assets seized, ongoing business rendered impossible — based solely on the unproven accusation of Piracy.

It’s true, as Sanchez observes, that “the owners of Megaupload don’t seem like particularly sympathetic characters,” but he also details that there are difficult and weighty issues that would have to be resolved to prove they engaged in criminal conduct. Megaupload obviously contains numerous infringing videos, but so does YouTube, yet both sites also entail numerous legal activities as well. As Sanchez put it: “most people, presumably, recognize that shutting down YouTube in order to disable access to those videos would not be worth the enormous cost to protected speech.” The Indictment is a classic one-side-of-the-story document; even the most mediocre lawyers can paint any picture they want when unchallenged. That’s why the government is not supposed to dole out punishments based on accusatory instruments, but only after those accusations are proved in an adversarial proceeding.

Whatever else is true, those issues should be decided upon a full trial in a court of law, not by government decree. Especially when it comes to Draconian government punishments — destroying businesses, shutting down websites, imprisoning people for life, assassinating them — what distinguishes a tyrannical society from a free one is whether the government is first required to prove guilt in a fair, adversarial proceeding. This is a precept Americans were once taught about why their country was superior, was reflexively understood, and was enshrined as the core political principle: “no person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.” It’s simply not a principle that is believed in any longer, and therefore is not remotely observed.

http://www.salon.com/2012/01/21/two_lessons_from_the_megaupload_seizure/singleton/
 

DefDazz

Coldplayer
Coldplayer
Joined
May 20, 2004
Messages
110
A very interesting and informative video from TED.

It gives you an idea of the back story to this and the reasons why it is bad (not bad for illegal downloaders) but for those who aren't.

A very well thought out and put together presentation:

[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9h2dF-IsH0I&feature=plcp&context=C3455d77UDOEgsToPDskK-mugtqUfzq29pvZbjq3Es"]Defend our freedom to share (or why SOPA is a bad idea) - YouTube[/ame]
 
Top