The FBI’s surprise takedown of Megaupload continues to send shockwaves, with increasingly vocal complaints from legitimate users of the online locker service that their files and backups are being held hostage. The unexpected downtime has left many surprised and angry that Megaupload – which the US Department of Justice described as “an international organized criminal enterprise” – has been taken offline with no consideration of non-copyrighted content, a reason some Anonymous members claim was their motivation for involvement in the huge denial-of-service attack yesterday. Meanwhile, reports from New Zealand where company founder Kim Dotcom was arrested suggest the outspoken exec locked himself in a panic room so as to avoid arrest, and was discovered near a sawn-off shotgun.
“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 company’s attorney Ira Rothken told CNET. “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.”
A hearing will take place on Monday, as the FBI continues its extradition process. RussiaToday uploaded a video showing Doctom and three other MegaUpload staff appearing in a hearing in New Zealand yesterday:
Mother Jones, meanwhile, took to Anonymous’ #OpMegaUpload chatrooms on IRC to discuss tactics, involvement and motivation with those who assisted in the DDoS that took down the DOJ site, along with those of the RIAA, MPAA and Universal Music. A single reason for the attack – believed to have involved over 5,600 people – was not to be found; instead, arguments ranged from frustration that Megaupload had been yanked even after offering anti-piracy tools to content owners, a disregard for copyright altogether, and complaints that regular users hadn’t been considered by the legal action.
“Sending email to the big companies or the FBI won’t have any effect here, they will not listen” one Anonymous member told the site, in reference to anti-SOPA/PIPA protests earlier this week. “We had to use something more powerful. They cannot ignore us now.”