Now that Kim Dotcom is in custody, details about the FBI’s two year investigation into Megaupload are surfacing. According to CNET, the grunt work can be traced back to the Motion Picture Association of America.
Record labels and software and videogame companies all accused Megaupload of copyright violations, but it was Hollywood that presented the FBI with “significant evidence.”
Although reports have said pressure came from managers of the four major record labels, it was the MPAA that “first referred MegaUpload and DotCom to law enforcement.” In their minds, it was the TV shows and movies that contributed to MegaUpload’s estimated $500 million in lost revenues.
It’s as though the record industry was blazay blah about the alleged piracy, however, they were just too busy trying to get LimeWire shut down:
“The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), the trade group for the four largest record labels, also spoke to the FBI about MegaUpload but provided little information outside of listing the pirated songs available on the site. At the time, the RIAA was much more focused on its court fight with file-sharing service LimeWire, which it eventually won. LimeWire was forced to shut down operations in 2010.”
The Justice Department wouldn’t elaborate about the lead up to the bust, but Neil MacBride, the U.S Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, who filed the indictment, did tell CNET:
“In general, it is clear that the U.S. government receives referrals from all sorts of sources in criminal cases, including victims of crime. We will investigate any referral containing significant and concrete evidence of criminal conduct. Intellectual property enforcement is no different.”
So does that mean we can report Congress to the DOJ for crimes against the Internet?