Hamish Fletcher

Hamish Fletcher is a business reporter for the NZ Herald

Mega hit with 150 copyright warnings

Kim Dotcom at the Mega Launch at Kim Dotcom Mansion on January 20. Photo / Norrie Montgomery
Kim Dotcom at the Mega Launch at Kim Dotcom Mansion on January 20. Photo / Norrie Montgomery

Kim Dotcom's new website has received around 150 notices for copyrighted content allegedly being hosted on the service since its launch 10 days ago.

The file-sharing and storage business, Mega, went live on January 20 with the internet entrepreneur's extradition case for alleged copyright violation concerning his previous business Megaupload still hanging over his head.

While Megaupload was taken down by US Government this time last year, Dotcom has claimed a team of lawyers scrutinised every aspect of the his new business and are convinced it won't suffer the same fate.

One of the key protections that Mega believes will keep it safe is that all files uploaded to the service are encrypted and its team cannot see what users are sharing or storing.

As Mega can claim to have no knowledge of what is being shared, the argument is that the website is legally shielded from responsibility for any swapping and copying of copyrighted material by users.

As well as this, Mega provides a system for rights holders to request for content to be taken down if they think their copyright is being infringed.

According to an intellectual property lawyer acting for Dotcom, Rick Shera, the website had received around 150 notices alleging copyright infringement as of yesterday.

Shera said it was usually the case that a cloud-storage provider would not examine what the allegedly infringing content actually was if the notice it received complies with the relevant laws.

"Normally you would look at [the notice] and obviously there are provisions for the copyright owner to swear under penalty of perjury in the United States or to swear in New Zealand that the information is correct," Shera said.

Shera said Mega would comply with the requirements of the law:

"If the notices are delivered correctly then it will act on them," he said.

Read more: Copyright law claims first victim

- NZ Herald

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