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Vocapedia > Technology > Internet > File-sharing sites / social media

 

 

 

 

 

 

share

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/19/
technology/with-graph-search-facebook-bets-on-more-sharing.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

upload

 

http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/06/24/
digital-diary-instagram-video-and-death-of-fantasy/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why is YouTube Erasing History?        NYT        23 October 2019

 

 

 

 

Why is YouTube Erasing History?        Video        NYT Opinion        23 October 2019

 

Under pressure to remove “extremist content,”

platforms are purging vital human rights evidence.

 

In war zones,

evidence captured on smartphones can provide a path to justice

— but platforms like YouTube and Facebook are getting in the way.

 

In the Video Op-Ed above,

the Syrian activist and archivist Hadi Al Khatib

urges platforms to overhaul

and improve their content moderation systems.

 

He fears that automated removal,

which in 2017 deleted

10 percent of the archive documenting violence in Syria,

risks erasing critical history.

 

As Dia Kayyali explains,

there is no clear-cut answer for YouTube and Facebook,

which deal with tens of thousands of minutes of video

uploaded every second.

 

These platforms have come under intense pressure

to police extremist content

and have been criticized

as acting too slowly

when killers live-stream mass shootings.

 

Algorithms can act quickly,

but they are often un-nuanced and fallible.

 

Meanwhile, human content moderators

endure an enormous psychological burden

when they analyze gruesome content.

 

Facebook recently announced an oversight board

with independent experts to help monitor content moderation.

 

Mr. Al Khatib thinks this is a good step,

but in a world in which platforms

hold part of the key to humanitarian justice,

it’s still not enough.

YouTube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WOzNCaHlW4I

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

YouTube        UK / USA

 

https://www.youtube.com/

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/youtube

https://www.nytimes.com/topic/company/youtube

 

 

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/04/15/
technology/alt-right-youtube-algorithm.html

 

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/12/
technology/youtube-suspends-trump.html

 

 

 

 

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/25/
magazine/yoga-adriene-mishler.html

 

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/15/
technology/youtube-bans-qanon-violence.html

 

https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2020/apr/30/
yoga-with-adriene-how-the-youtube-star-won-lockdown

 

https://www.theguardian.com/media/2020/may/02/
youtube-deletes-coronavirus-conspiracy-theorist-david-ickes-channel

 

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/23/
technology/coronavirus-facebook-amazon-youtube.html

 

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/03/02/
technology/youtube-conspiracy-theory.html

 

https://www.theguardian.com/global/2020/feb/16/
youtube-turns-15-what-happened-to-some-of-the-platfoms-biggest-early-stars

 

 

 

 

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/23/
opinion/syria-youtube-content-moderation.html

 

https://www.youtube.com/
watch?v=WOzNCaHlW4I - NYT - 23 October 2019

 

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2019/06/08/
technology/youtube-radical.html

 

 

 

 

https://www.npr.org/2018/08/13/
633997148/the-relentless-pace-of-satisfying-fans-is-burning-out-some-youtube-stars

 

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2018/08/11/
technology/youtube-fake-view-sellers.html

 

https://www.npr.org/sections/therecord/2018/05/30/
615291320/youtube-urged-by-scotland-yard-removes-rap-videos-blamed-for-violence

 

https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2018/01/02/
575057157/logan-paul-youtube-star-apologizes-as-critics-slam-video-showing-dead-body

 

 

 

 

https://www.npr.org/2017/11/18/
565025384/what-is-poppy

 

http://www.npr.org/sections/alltechconsidered/2017/04/14/
523895647/online-video-producers-caught-in-struggle-between-advertisers-and-youtube

 

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/04/05/
522739004/once-an-alternative-to-mainstream-tv-youtube-now-offers-just-that-with-new-servi

 

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/03/21/
520976552/google-promises-to-keep-ads-off-of-hateful-offensive-youtube-content

 

 

 

 

http://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2016/12/31/
507104140/millions-saw-these-8-youtube-videos-in-2016-did-you

 

http://www.npr.org/2016/10/15/
497931426/haters-back-off-new-tv-show-makes-youtube-star-more-than-internet-famous

 

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/aug/28/
stampy-joseph-garrett-youtube-childrens-presenter-millions-of-viewers

 

 

 

 

http://www.npr.org/sections/alltechconsidered/2015/10/21/
450580490/what-happens-when-the-price-of-free-goes-up-youtubes-about-to-find-out

 

 

 

 

https://www.youtube.com/
watch?v=dvV6x2BQoXk - Guardian - 18 August 2014

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/25/
business/youtube-removes-video-posted-by-shooting-suspect.html

 

 

 

 

http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2013/dec/11/
youtube-ad-revenues-tipped-to-jump-51-to-56bn-in-2013

 

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/04/03/
where-youtube-meets-the-farm/

 

 

 

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/06/world/asia/
youtube-ban-is-shrugged-off-in-afghanistan.html

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/23/
sunday-review/free-speech-in-the-age-of-youtube.html

 

 

 

 

http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2011/oct/25/
google-transparency-report-released

 

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/05/09/
us-youtube-movies-idUSTRE7485WU20110509

 

http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2011/apr/26/
youtube-movie-rental-service

 

http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2011/apr/07/
google-to-boost-spend-on-original-youtube-content

 

 

 

 

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2010/nov/02/
anwar-al-awlaki-videos-youtube

 

http://dealbook.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/10/29/
youtube-chief-hurley-to-step-down/

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/03/
technology/03youtube.html

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/17/
technology/17youtube.html

 

 

 

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/08/
technology/personaltech/08basics.html

http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/features/
how-can-youtube-survive-1734267.html

 

http://www.usatoday.com/tech/news/2008-09-12-
youtube_N.htm

 

http://www.usatoday.com/tech/news/2007-05-18-
youtube-challenges_N.htm

 

https://www.theguardian.com/culture/2006/dec/23/features16.theguide4 

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2006/oct/11/businesscomment.digitalmedia 

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2006/oct/10/searchengines.citynews 

https://www.theguardian.com/media/2006/oct/07/digitalmedia.internationalnews 

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2006/jul/31/news.newmedia 

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2006/may/31/news.g2

 

 

 

 

YouTube Founders > Chad Hurley and Steve Chen        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/12/
technology/youtube-founders-aim-to-revamp-delicious.html

 

 

 

 

YouTube > streaming TV service        USA

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/04/05/
522739004/once-an-alternative-to-mainstream-tv-youtube-now-offers-just-that-with-new-servi

 

 

 

 

Egypt > YouTube access        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/10/
world/middleeast/egypt-court-orders-block-on-youtube-over-anti-islam-video.html

 

 

 

 

'Hateful, Offensive' YouTube Content        USA

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/03/21/
520976552/google-promises-to-keep-ads-off-of-hateful-offensive-youtube-content

 

 

 

 

YouTube video        USA

http://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2016/12/31/
507104140/millions-saw-these-8-youtube-videos-in-2016-did-you

 

 

 

 

YouTube clip

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cBY-0n4esNY

 

 

 

 

YouTube star        UK

https://www.theguardian.com/news/2018/jan/18/
chrissy-chambers-youtube-revenge-porn-legal-victory

 

 

 

 

YouTube star        USA

https://www.npr.org/2018/08/13/
633997148/the-relentless-pace-of-satisfying-fans-is-burning-out-some-youtube-stars

https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2018/01/02/
575057157/logan-paul-youtube-star-apologizes-as-critics-slam-video-showing-dead-body

 

http://www.npr.org/2016/10/15/
497931426/haters-back-off-new-tv-show-makes-youtube-star-more-than-internet-famous

 

 

 

 

online hit        UK

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2012/jun/09/
thank-you-hater-trolls 

 

 

 

 

viral video        UK

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/jan/23/
10-township-singing-vicus-visser

 

https://www.theguardian.com/world/video/2012/dec/28/
2012-viral-videos

 

 

 

 

go viral

 

 

 

 

YouTube ban > Pakistan        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/30/world/asia/
youtube-ban-lifted-in-pakistan-for-3-minutes.html

 

 

 

 

YouTube > ads        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/03/
technology/03youtube.html

 

 

 

 

YouTube > Content ID        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/03/
technology/03youtube.html

 

 

 

 

how to download YouTube videos using Voobys

https://www.wikihow.com/Download-YouTube-Videos

 

 

 

 

delete / terminate an account        UK

https://www.theguardian.com/media/2020/may/02/
youtube-deletes-coronavirus-conspiracy-theorist-david-ickes-channel

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

filesharing        UK

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/file-sharing 

 

http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/musicblog/2009/jul/27/filesharing-music-industry

 

 

 

 

file-sharing site        UK

http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2006/aug/03/newmedia.media 

 

 

 

 

Reddit        USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/28/
technology/can-reddit-grow-up.html

 

 

 

 

filesharing / sharing pirated songs on the internet        UK

https://www.theguardian.com/media/2006/jan/28/
digitalmedia.netmusic 

 

 

 

 

PirateBrowser

http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2013/aug/12/
pirate-bay-piratebrowser-web-browser

 

 

 

 

pirate website        UK

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2007/oct/19/digitalmedia.media 

 

 

 

 

(be) shut down

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2007/oct/19/digitalmedia.media 

 

 

 

 

cloud-based digital music services > Spotify and Rhapsody

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/19/
business/media/facebook-is-expected-to-unveil-media-sharing-service.html

 

 

 

 

photo-sharing service > Flick

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/31/
technology/31flickr.html

 

 

 

 

blogging platform > Medium

https://medium.com/

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/10/
business/a-founder-of-twitter-goes-long.html

 

 

 

 

Flickr

 

online photo management

and sharing application.

Show off your favorite photos

and videos to the world

https://www.flickr.com/ 

 

 

 

 

photo-sharing application > Instagram

https://www.instagram.com/ 

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/instagram

 

http://www.nytimes.com/video/theater/100000002611529/instahamlet.html

http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2013/oct/11/instagram-kevin-systrom-world-domination

http://www.theguardian.com/science/gallery/2013/sep/10/nasa-best-instagrams-in-pictures

http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/06/24/digital-diary-instagram-video-and-death-of-fantasy/

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/apr/29/instagram-facebook-photo-sharing-site

http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/us-news-blog/2013/feb/05/instagram-users-fightback-stolen-photos

 

http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2012/04/09/facebook-buys-instagram-for-1-billion/

 

 

 

 

Picasa

 

a software download

from Google

that helps you organize,

edit, and share your photos

http://picasa.google.com/

 

 

 

 

mobile photo-sharing        2010

 

smartphone apps

transform cellphone photos

so they look better,

tag them with location data

and post them in real time

to social networks

on phones and the Web

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/11/technology/11photo.html

 

 

 

 

SoundCloud

https://soundcloud.com/

 

 

 

 

SoundCloud star

https://www.theguardian.com/film/2020/nov/23/
tekashi-6inx9ine-documentary-hulu

 

 

 

 

 free online music sharing > Napster

http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/03/21/the-music-industry-post-napster/

 

http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/05/18/is-it-too-late-for-price-cuts-to-save-napster/

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2005/11/20/business/yourmoney/20fanning.html

 

 

 

 

file-sharing software

 

 

 

 

illegal filesharers

http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2009/jul/24/hull-isp-pulls-plug-filesharers

 

 

 

 

file sharing

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/file-sharing 

 

http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/musicblog/2009/jul/27/filesharing-music-industry

 

 

 

 

file-sharing site        UK / USA

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/21/
technology/megaupload-indictment-internet-piracy.html

 

http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2006/aug/03/newmedia.media

 

 

 

 

eMule

 

 

 

 

Kazaa

 

 

 

 

Megaupload        UK / USA

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/megaupload 

 

http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2012/jan/25/kim-dotcom-jetset-image-megaupload-fortune

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/21/technology/founder-of-shuttered-file-sharing-site-sought-limelight.html

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/21/technology/megaupload-indictment-internet-piracy.html

 

 

 

 

upload

http://www.guardian.co.uk/money/2012/dec/20/who-owns-content-you-upload

 

 

 

 

Who owns the content you upload online?        December 2012

 

The thorny issue of ownership

is under the spotlight again,

after Instagram announced

changes to its terms and conditions

http://www.guardian.co.uk/money/2012/dec/20/who-owns-content-you-upload

 

 

 

 

filesharing / sharing pirated songs on the internet

http://www.theguardian.com/media/2006/jan/28/digitalmedia.netmusic 

 

 

 

 

music download service

 

 

 

 

online music service Spotify        UK / USA

http://www.npr.org/sections/therecord/2017/07/21/
538501163/spotify-sued-yet-again-over-compositions

 

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2009/mar/04/
online-music-spotify-hacked 

 

 

 

 

file-sharing software        UK

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2003/dec/23/film.bollywood 

 

 

 

 

illegal filesharers        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2009/jul/24/hull-isp-pulls-plug-filesharers

 

 

 

 

illegal downloaders        UK

http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2009/aug/25/file-sharing-internet

 

 

 

 

Future of film is on the net        UK        2006

http://www.theguardian.com/uk/2006/jan/28/digitalmedia.film 

 

 

 

 

download full-length features

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Free Speech in the Age of YouTube

 

September 22, 2012

The New York Times

By SOMINI SENGUPTA

 

San Francisco

COMPANIES are usually accountable to no one but their shareholders.

Internet companies are a different breed. Because they traffic in speech — rather than, say, corn syrup or warplanes — they make decisions every day about what kind of expression is allowed where. And occasionally they come under pressure to explain how they decide, on whose laws and values they rely, and how they distinguish between toxic speech that must be taken down and that which can remain.

The storm over an incendiary anti-Islamic video posted on YouTube has stirred fresh debate on these issues. Google, which owns YouTube, restricted access to the video in Egypt and Libya, after the killing of a United States ambassador and three other Americans. Then, it pulled the plug on the video in five other countries, where the content violated local laws.

Some countries blocked YouTube altogether, though that didn’t stop the bloodshed: in Pakistan, where elections are to be scheduled soon, riots on Friday left a death toll of 19.

The company pointed to its internal edicts to explain why it rebuffed calls to take down the video altogether. It did not meet its definition of hate speech, YouTube said, and so it allowed the video to stay up on the Web. It didn’t say very much more.

That explanation revealed not only the challenges that confront companies like Google but also how opaque they can be in explaining their verdicts on what can be said on their platforms. Google, Facebook and Twitter receive hundreds of thousands of complaints about content every week.

“We are just awakening to the need for some scrutiny or oversight or public attention to the decisions of the most powerful private speech controllers,” said Tim Wu, a Columbia University law professor who briefly advised the Obama administration on consumer protection regulations online.

Google was right, Mr. Wu believes, to selectively restrict access to the crude anti-Islam video in light of the extraordinary violence that broke out. But he said the public deserved to know more about how private firms made those decisions in the first place, every day, all over the world. After all, he added, they are setting case law, just as courts do in sovereign countries.

Mr. Wu offered some unsolicited advice: Why not set up an oversight board of regional experts or serious YouTube users from around the world to make the especially tough decisions?

Google has not responded to his proposal, which he outlined in a blog post for The New Republic.

Certainly, the scale and nature of YouTube makes this a daunting task. Any analysis requires combing through over a billion videos and overlaying that against the laws and mores of different countries. It’s unclear whether expert panels would allow for unpopular minority opinion anyway. The company said in a statement on Friday that, like newspapers, it, too, made “nuanced” judgments about content: “It’s why user-generated content sites typically have clear community guidelines and remove videos or posts that break them.”

Privately, companies have been wrestling with these issues for some time.

The Global Network Initiative, a conclave of executives, academics and advocates, has issued voluntary guidelines on how to respond to government requests to filter content.

And the Anti-Defamation League has convened executives, government officials and advocates to discuss how to define hate speech and what to do about it.

Hate speech is a pliable notion, and there will be arguments about whether it covers speech that is likely to lead to violence (think Rwanda) or demeans a group (think Holocaust denial), just as there will be calls for absolute free expression.

Behind closed doors, Internet companies routinely make tough decisions on content.

Apple and Google earlier this year yanked a mobile application produced by Hezbollah. In 2010, YouTube removed links to speeches by an American-born cleric, Anwar al-Awlaki, in which he advocated terrorist violence; at the time, the company said it proscribed posts that could incite “violent acts.”

ON rare occasions, Google has taken steps to educate users about offensive content. For instance, the top results that come up when you search for the word “Jew” include a link to a virulently anti-Jewish site, followed by a promoted link from Google, boxed in pink. It links to a page that lays out Google’s rationale: the company says it does not censor search results, despite complaints.

Susan Benesch, who studies hate speech that incites violence, said it would be wise to have many more explanations like this, not least to promote debate. “They certainly don’t have to,” said Ms. Benesch, director of the Dangerous Speech Project at the World Policy Institute. “But we can encourage them to because of the enormous power they have.”

The companies point out that they obey the laws of every country in which they do business. And their employees and algorithms vet content that may violate their user guidelines, which are public.

YouTube prohibits hate speech, which it defines as that which “attacks or demeans a group” based on its race, religion and so on; Facebook’s hate speech ban likewise covers “content that attacks people” on the basis of identity. Google and Facebook prohibit hate speech; Twitter does not explicitly ban it. And anyway, legal scholars say, it is exceedingly difficult to devise a universal definition of hate speech.

Shibley Telhami, a political scientist at the University of Maryland, said he hoped the violence over the video would encourage a nuanced conversation about how to safeguard free expression with other values, like public safety. “It’s really about at what point does speech becomes action; that’s a boundary that becomes difficult to draw, and it’s a slippery slope,” Mr. Telhami said.

He cautioned that some countries, like Russia, which threatened to block YouTube altogether, would be thrilled to have any excuse to squelch speech. “Does Russia really care about this film?” Mr. Telhami asked.

International law does not protect speech that is designed to cause violence. Several people have been convicted in international courts for incitement to genocide in Rwanda.

One of the challenges of the digital age, as the YouTube case shows, is that speech articulated in one part of the world can spark mayhem in another. Can the companies that run those speech platforms predict what words and images might set off carnage elsewhere? Whoever builds that algorithm may end up saving lives.

 

Somini Sengupta is a technology correspondent

for The New York Times.

Free Speech in the Age of YouTube,
NYT,
22.9.2012,
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/23/
sunday-review/free-speech-in-the-age-of-youtube.html

 

 

 

 

 

7 Charged

as F.B.I. Closes

a Top File-Sharing Site

 

January 20, 2012

The New York Times

By BEN SISARIO

 

In what authorities have called one of the largest criminal copyright cases ever brought, the Justice Department and the F.B.I. have seized the Web site Megaupload and charged seven people connected with it with running an international enterprise based on Internet piracy.

Megaupload, one of the most popular so-called locker services on the Internet, allowed users to transfer large files like movies and music anonymously. Media companies have long accused it of abetting copyright infringement on a vast scale. In a grand jury indictment, Megaupload is accused of causing $500 million in damages to copyright owners and of making $175 million by selling ads and premium subscriptions.

The arrests were greeted almost immediately with digital Molotov cocktails. The hacker collective that calls itself Anonymous attacked the Web sites of the United States Justice Department and several major entertainment companies and trade groups in retaliation for the seizure of Megaupload.

The case against Megaupload comes at a charged time, a day after broad online protests against a pair of antipiracy bills in Congress: the Stop Online Piracy Act, or SOPA, in the House of Representatives, and the Protect Intellectual Property Act, or PIPA, in the Senate. The bills would give United States authorities expanded powers to crack down on foreign sites suspected of piracy. But technology companies and civil liberties groups say that the powers are too broadly defined and could effectively result in censorship.

Four of the seven people, including the site’s founder, Kim Dotcom (born Kim Schmitz), were arrested Friday in New Zealand; the three others remain at large. Each of the seven people — who the indictment said were members of a criminal group it called Mega Conspiracy — is charged with five counts of copyright infringement and conspiracy. The charges could result in more than 20 years in prison.

As part of the crackdown, about 20 search warrants were executed in the United States and in eight other countries, including New Zealand. About $50 million in assets were also seized, as well as a number of servers and 18 domain names that formed Megaupload’s network of file-sharing sites.

The police arrived at Dotcom Mansion in Auckland on Friday morning in two helicopters. Mr. Dotcom, a 37-year-old with dual Finnish and German citizenship, retreated into a safe room, and the police had to cut their way in. He was eventually arrested with a firearm close by that the police said appeared to be a shortened shotgun.

“It was definitely not as simple as knocking at the front door,” said Grant Wormald, a detective inspector.

The police said they seized 6 million New Zealand dollars, or $4.8 million, in luxury vehicles, including a Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupe and a pink 1959 Cadillac. They also seized art and electronic equipment and froze 11 million dollars in cash in various accounts.

Mr. Dotcom and three others arrested in New Zealand appeared in court Friday afternoon and were denied bail. Extradition proceedings will continue Monday.

The police said the other three arrested in New Zealand were Finn Batato, 38, a German citizen and resident; Mathias Ortmann, 40, a German citizen who is a resident of Hong Kong; and Bram van der Kolk, 29, a Dutch citizen who is a resident of New Zealand.

The police said they were still searching Dotcom Mansion on Friday evening.

Ira P. Rothken, a lawyer for Megaupload, said by telephone Thursday that “Megaupload believes the government is wrong on the facts, wrong on the law.”

On Wednesday, Google and Wikipedia joined dozens of sites in political protests by blacking out some content and explaining their arguments against the antipiracy laws.

The group Anonymous, which has previously set its sights on PayPal, Sony and major media executives, was more blunt in its response. The group disabled the Justice Department’s site for a time, and it also claimed credit for shutting down sites for the Motion Picture Association of America and the Recording Industry Association of America, two of the most powerful media lobbies in Washington, as well as those of Universal Music Group, the largest music label, and BMI, which represents music publishers.

“Let’s just say, for #SOPA supporters their #SOPAblackout is today,” Anonymous wrote in a Twitter post. In an e-mail, a spokesman for the group said it was responsible for the Web attacks.

The Megaupload case touches on many of the most controversial aspects of the anti-piracy debate. Megaupload and similar sites, like RapidShare and MediaFire, are often promoted as convenient ways to transfer large files legitimately; a recent promotional video had major stars like Will.i.am of the Black Eyed Peas singing Megaupload’s praises. But media companies say the legitimate uses are a veil concealing extensive theft.

Mr. Dotcom has made himself a visible target. He splits his time between Hong Kong and New Zealand and casts himself in flamboyant YouTube videos. His role as one of the most prominent Web locker operators has earned him a half-joking nickname in Hollywood: Dr. Evil.

According to the indictment, he took in $42 million from Megaupload’s operations in 2010.

The indictment against Megaupload, which stems from a federal inquiry that began two years ago, was handed down by a grand jury in Virginia two weeks ago but was not unsealed until Thursday.

It quotes extensively from correspondence among the defendants, who work for Megaupload and its related sites. The correspondence, the indictment says, shows that the operators knew the site contained unauthorized content.

The indictment cites an e-mail from last February, for example, in which three members of the group discussed an article about how to stop the government from seizing domain names.

The Megaupload case is unusual, said Orin S. Kerr, a law professor at George Washington University, in that federal prosecutors obtained the private e-mails of Megaupload’s operators in an effort to show they were operating in bad faith.

“The government hopes to use their private words against them,” Mr. Kerr said. “This should scare the owners and operators of similar sites.”


Nicole Perlroth and Jonathan Hutchison contributed reporting.

    7 Charged as F.B.I. Closes a Top File-Sharing Site, NYT, 20.1.2012,
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/21/technology/
    megaupload-indictment-internet-piracy.html

 

 

 

 

 

Facebook to Offer Path to Media

 

September 18, 2011

The New York Times

By BEN SISARIO

 

For cloud-based digital music services like Spotify and Rhapsody, which stream millions of songs but have struggled to sign up large numbers of paying users, being friended by Facebook could prove to be a mixed blessing.

This week, according to numerous media and technology executives, Facebook will unveil a media platform that will allow people to easily share their favorite music, television shows and movies, effectively making the basic profile page a primary entertainment hub.

Facebook, which has more than 750 million users, has not revealed its plans, but the company is widely expected to announce the service at its F8 developers’ conference in San Francisco on Thursday.

By putting them in front of millions of users, Facebook’s new platform could introduce the music services to vast new audiences. “If it works the way it is supposed to, it would be the nirvana of interoperability,” said Ted Cohen, a consultant and former digital executive for a major label.

But the new plan will ratchet up the competitive pressure on these fledgling services, forcing them to offer more free music as enticements to new users.

According to the media and technology executives, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the deals were private, Facebook has made agreements with a number of media companies to develop a way for a user’s profile page to display whatever entertainment he is consuming on those outside services. Links that appear on a widget or tab, or as part of a user’s news feed, would point a curious friend directly to the content.

Spotify and Rhapsody, along with their smaller competitors Rdio, MOG and the French company Deezer, are said to be among the 10 or so music services that will be part of the service at its introduction; Vevo, the music video site, is another. A Facebook spokesman declined to comment, and media executives cautioned that details of the plan could change.

Spotify is the largest of these services with more than 10 million users, according to its most recent reporting. The service began in Europe in 2008 and arrived in the United States in July, after protracted negotiations with the major record labels over its “freemium” structure, which lets people listen to music free, with advertising, or pay $5 or $10 a month for an ad-free version.

Rdio and MOG, which charge $5 and $10 a month for subscriptions, announced free versions last week in an effort to compete with Spotify. And Rhapsody, whose service costs $10 and $15 a month, has just introduced an array of social features centered on Facebook.

The companies declined to answer questions about Facebook’s media platform. And David Hyman, MOG’s founder and chief executive, said that the development of his company’s free tier far predated Spotify’s entry into the United States.

But Mr. Hyman said that the change was being made to reduce the “friction” a nonsubscriber experiences when following a link posted by a paying user. Instead of hearing the song, the nonsubscriber would reach a page asking to sign up with a credit card — an annoyance for many potential customers.

“In the Internet world, any minuscule piece of friction blows people’s minds,” he said.

MOG provides new users with a “gas tank” of free music — supported by advertising — that increases with that user’s social activity on the site, like sharing playlists or inviting friends. Rdio’s free music will come ad-free.

Neither company would say exactly how much free music would be made available.

“We don’t want to force you to look at or listen to ads that will distract you from enjoying music,” said Carter Adamson, Rdio’s chief operating officer, “and we don’t want you to spam your friends to get more free.”

But even free music requires royalty payments to record companies — typically some fraction of a cent per stream — and some investors and technology executives are concerned that Facebook’s platform may bring in large numbers of users who are willing to listen to some free music but are not being given much incentive to subscribe. That might make success more difficult for services that have less favorable deals with record companies.

David Pakman, a partner in the venture capital firm Venrock and a former chief executive of the digital service eMusic, also said that instead of giving smaller companies a boost, the mathematics of Facebook’s hundreds of millions of links might simply allow the largest service to dominate all the others.

“It favors the big over the small,” Mr. Pakman said. “It’s a good thing for all services in that it lets them all participate. But the small guys will lose network effects, and the big guys will gain it.”

Spotify has not updated its user numbers since arriving in the United States, but music executives say it quickly drew more than 100,000 customers to its paid service alone.

MOG and Rdio have not reported their numbers, but music executives say their tallies are well under 100,000.

Not all the services involved in the Facebook platform are going free. Rhapsody, which was founded 10 years ago and has 800,000 subscribers, is sticking to its monthly subscription rate, said Jon Irwin, the company’s president.

“Our belief is that the cost of the content cannot be fully offset by the advertising dollars you can generate,” Mr. Irwin said, “and that the subsequent conversion of somebody to a paying subscriber because they’ve been able to listen to content for free on a desktop is not at a level that supports the losses you’ll incur on the advertising side.”

Mr. Irwin also believes that Facebook will further intensify the competition among the cloud services, and that Spotify and his own company will have the advantage.

“It’s going to be hard for the players not at scale to survive,” he said. “You’re looking at a two-horse race.”

Facebook to Offer Path to Media,
NYT,
18.9.2011,
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/19/
business/media/facebook-is-expected-to-unveil-media-sharing-service.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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