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First off today, following the closure of cyberlocker service Megaupload and the arrest of seven people involved with the compay, including the company’s founder Kim Dotcom, similar sites seem to be taking drastic action to avoid similar attention. Filesonic and Fileserve, two of the largest sites in the field, have shut down both its referral program and ended all file sharing, making files only available to the people who uploaded them. Uploaded.to has blocked all U.S.-based IP addresses and both VideoBB and VideoZer have ended their referral program (among many others). At least one service, x7.to has shut down completely and the shock waves are still continuing to be felt as more and more services change their operation in light of the arrest. The move has left many forum sites and file sharing communities scrambling to find replacements for thousands of links no longer accessible.
Next up today, in Poland a series of denial-of-service attacks against key Polish government websites has caused the government to debate its stance on the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) that it was slated to sign later this week. The agreement, which focuses primarily on counterfeit goods but also includes copyright elements, works to harmonize criminal and civil enforcement between signatory countries. However, many feel that the agreement is too far overreaching and threatens freedom online and off. At least one opposition party is calling for a delay in signing the treaty pending greater public input. The United States and, Australia, Japan and other nations have already signed.
Finally today, a second administrator for the site NinjaVideo has been sentenced. Matthew David Howard Smith, one of the co-founders of the site, was sentenced to 14 months in Federal prison. Fellow co-founder Hana Amal Beshara was sentenced to 22 months on Jan. 6. NinjaVideo rose to prominence for hosting links and helping users seek out infringing content but the site was shuttered in 2010 by the Department of Justice and most of its administrators were arrested in September of 2011. All of those who have been arrested have pleaded guilty and two more still await sentencing..
That’s it for the three count today. We will be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.
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