Six major Hollywood film studios have filed a massive copyright infringement lawsuit against Kim Dotcom and his now defunct file sharing website Megaupload.
The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) announced on Tuesday that 20th Century Fox, Disney, Paramount, Universal, Columbia Pictures and Warner Bros had filed the action in a US court.
It’s alleged Megaupload and its key operators – including Dotcom operating out of New Zealand – facilitated, encouraged and profited from massive copyright infringement of movies and television shows before the website was shut down by US authorities in January 2012.
“Megaupload was built on an incentive system that rewarded users for uploading the most popular content to the site, which was almost always stolen movies, TV shows and other commercial entertainment content,” senior executive vice president and global general counsel of the MPAA Steven Fabrizio said.
“It paid users based on how many times the content was downloaded by others – and didn’t pay at all until that infringing content was downloaded 10,000 times.
“Megaupload wasn’t a cloud storage service at all, it was an unlawful hub for mass distribution.”
Dotcom responded to news of the lawsuit on Twitter, saying the MPAA case “is a load of nonsense and won’t succeed after scrutiny of the facts”.
Dotcom is already facing extradition from New Zealand to the US on charges of copyright infringement, money laundering and racketeering relating to Megaupload.