March 22, 2012 at 12:26 PM ET
The saga of file-sharing website Megaupload, which led to the arrest of outlandish founder Kim Dotcom, continues. The Motion Picture Association of America has filed a letter supporting the preservation of copyright infringement evidence through the illegal downloads. It wants Carpathia, Megaupload's Virginia-based servers, to hold on to that info, and that service doesn't come cheap.
According to a court document filed Tuesday by Carpathia, the company demands compensation and/or reimbursement for the $9,000 daily tab for maintaining those files -- or permission to delete them. The company also expects reimbursement for moving the 1,103 servers that hold the 25 perabytes of Megaupload files, which added another $65,000 to those expenses. Carpathia says the value of those servers is $1.25 million, were the company able to free them up for use by others.
Along with the MPAA, various parties have lobbied to keep the info downloaded and uploaded by Megaupload's 66.6 million registered users, including U.S. government officials.
While the government indicted Megaupload on charges of criminal copyright infringement, the MPAA is going after the company in civil court, and will potentially add more individuals it believes "knowingly and materially contributed to the infringement."
For completely different reasons, the Electronic Frontier Foundation also wants Carpathia's complaint to be successful, in that the organization seeks to protect those individuals who may get caught in the crossfire as the MPAA and the government seek to punish those who participated in illegal downloads. The EFF wants to make sure those individuals who used Megaupload for legal purposes are able to access and preserve their data.
The Justice Department has found that a little less than 10 percent of Megaupload users had actually uploaded anything -- a stat that gave more credence to the idea the site was a hotbed of illegal downloads.
The government has already executed its search warrants, admitting it "has no continuing right to access the Mega Servers."