Ben Farrow is a JD candidate at Osgoode Hall Law School.
It was a big day in the copyright enforcement world today as US federal authorities moved to shut down website Megaupload. The crackdown included charges against seven people as well as the seizure of over 50 million dollars in assets. As the internet's most popular "file locker" services, Megaupload boasted over 50 million daily visitors and accounted for 4% of all internet traffic last year. We are following the story here and here.
The Hacktivist group Anonymous has responded by taking down the Universal Music Group website, the MPAA and RIAA websites, the US Copyright Office's website, and even the US Department of Justice's website.
It will be interesting to see how this situation affects the discussion surrounding the SOPA/PIPA legislation being considered by the US government. Some may argue that today's events are evidence that existing laws are effective against online piracy; however, others will likely argue that today's events prove that new legislation is required after all.
As the old adage goes: "Only time will tell"...