Recently, the Motion Picture Association of America got the file uploading site Megaupload.com shut down on allegations of piracy. See this article for more information. Although Megaupload certainly had illegal content on it, we believe that the Internet is fundamentally user-driven and that it's unrealistic to police every single submission. While we in no way endorse piracy, completely shutting down the site is the wrong way to fight it and is contrary to American values of freedom of speech and information.
As citizens of the Internet, we the undersigned strongly object to your recent taking down of Megaupload. This is incredibly unfair not only to the company itself but also to people who use the site for legitimate purposes, bought subscriptions, and are outside of the US. While fighting piracy is a fine goal, drastic measures will only result in massive collateral damage to the free, open, user-driven nature of the Internet. We understand your plight, but at the same time, we don't believe that stopping piracy is worth the cost to freedom.
Furthermore, an illegal download is not necessarily a lost sale, especially considering how many pirates are teenagers or college students with no money. Adults with disposable income are happy to pay for reliable, convenient content, as shown by businesses like Netflix, iTunes, Steam, Hulu, etc. Shutting down one website with illegal material will only move the material elsewhere. The only realistic way to fight piracy is to compete with it. Instead of trying to remove your content from the Internet, post it online for free with ads and/or offer an ad-free subscription.
You called the SOPA blackouts an abuse of power. Yet, the very next day you get a site shut down because the owners can't absolutely control the content, despite the fact that they've made efforts to work with you, which we consider far worse. Until such a time as you drop charges against Megaupload and refrain from further harassment of legitimate websites, we're boycotting all of your products. We will neither buy DVDs nor see movies in theaters that are produced by MPAA members, including Disney, Paramount, Sony, Fox, Universal, and Warner Bros.
Keep up the great work. Look what you've accomplished!
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