MegaUpload: Copyright Industry At War Against Monsters of its Own Making

Paris, January 20th 2012 – The takedown1 of MegaUpload from the Internet shows a global attempt to control and censor the Internet, as illustrated by PIPA2 in the US, and the ACTA3 agreement worldwide. Conducted outside of the US territory and without even a court ruling, this case makes clear how disproportionate and violent is the war waged in the name of an obsolete copyright regime.

The huge profits made by the editors of MegaUpload through the centralizing of copyrighted works are barely defensible. MegaUpload is a direct by-product of the war conducted against peer-to-peer non-market sharing between individuals. After promoting legislation that boosted centralized sharing sites, the same lobbies now declare a war against them.

“The FBI's takedown of MegaUpload from the Internet is useful in many regards. It shows everybody how blindly violent the US are in enforcing extremist copyright laws across the world. This case also gives a glimpse of what could become the norm if PIPA or ACTA were to be adopted. Furthermore, the censorship of MegaUpload also shows how fragile and easily controllable centralized services are. It resonates as a vibrant call for the use of decentralized peer-to-peer protocols for non-profit sharing between individuals. We must urgently reform such a diseased copyright regime that has become harmful to the very architecture of a Free Internet.”, said Jérémie Zimmermann, spokesperson for La Quadrature du Net.

“The true solution is to recognize a well-circumscribed right to non-market sharing between individuals and to put in place new financing schemes for a cultural economy compatible with this sharing. It will ensure the fair remuneration of artists and authors and safeguard the rights of the public to share in culture as expressed in article 27 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights4.” declared Philippe Aigrain, co-founder of La Quadrature du Net.