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Piracy The Courts

RapidShare Threatens Suit Over Piracy Allegations 183

Hugh Pickens writes "PC Magazine reports that RapidShare, named as a contributor to digital piracy by a MarkMonitor report, has threatened to sue for defamation. 'This defamation of RapidShare as a digital piracy site is absurd and we reserve the right to take legal action against MarkMonitor,' says RapidShare in a statement. 'RapidShare is a legitimate company that offers its customers fast, simple and secure storage and management of large amounts of data via our servers.' MarkMonitor, a Web site that specializes in 'enterprise brand protection,' says in their study that the most-trafficked domains engaged in digital piracy included three sites —,, and — that combined yielded 21 billion pageviews per year. RapidShare acknowledged that copyrighted files do get uploaded to its site, however 'these users are in the absolute minority compared with those who use our services to pursue perfectly legitimate interests.' RapidShare says that it does not open and view the files of its users, and contains no search function so that other users may look for content."
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RapidShare Threatens Suit Over Piracy Allegations

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  • More harm than good? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by rts008 ( 812749 ) on Thursday January 13, 2011 @06:48AM (#34859470) Journal

    While I support the original intent of both copyright and patent laws, I also think both have exceeded their bounds, and need reform.
    The original intent was to BOTH foster creativity and innovation while protecting both, it has currently devolved into protecting/fostering those with the most money.
    Major reform is needed.
    One thing I learned from my GrandDad[among many, numerous things], was that only stagnant water breeds mosquitoes. Think about the concept seriously for a moment, it is enlightening.

    Maybe it seems new to you all, but it's a culmination of 100 year old insight and wisdom to me.
    Sonny Bono/Disney should have been stopped in retrospect, but that's how hindsight seems to work!

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 13, 2011 @06:48AM (#34859472)

    Just in my own personal experience, I've never seen Rapidshare used for legal means.

    No offense, but that probably says more about you than it does about Rapidshare.

  • *.R00 (Score:5, Interesting)

    by metalmaster ( 1005171 ) on Thursday January 13, 2011 @06:51AM (#34859482)
    I've pondered on this since the first story broke, but can a company be liable for hosting partial files? A lot of the links i see for rapidshare are partial archives. By themselves they do no harm
  • by Kilrah_il ( 1692978 ) on Thursday January 13, 2011 @06:54AM (#34859506)

    Well, if you see a file uploaded to RS and then it is downloaded by 10,000 users, it is probably not used for legal reasons. If, OTOH, it is downloaded by 1 other user, there is a higher chance it is used for a legal reasons.
    Of course, this is not conclusive evidence: A file can be sent to a whole group via RS and still be legit, and a movie can be sent illegally from one person to another. But still, usage statistics can give you some idea as to the legality of the files without opening them.

  • by xaxa ( 988988 ) on Thursday January 13, 2011 @07:23AM (#34859656)

    I expect RapidShare are carefully selecting their statistic. For instance, the ratio of legal:illegal uploads might be very favourable to them, while the ratio for downloads isn't.

  • by Weezul ( 52464 ) on Thursday January 13, 2011 @07:58AM (#34859832)

    That says more about you than about rapid share.

    Are you old enough that you've seen ftp used for non-piracy purposes? Does that means we should place a tax on ftp requests that lines the pockets of the MafiAA?

    There is a younger variation on RapidShare called DropBox which provide better backup & syncing functionality, but it's not as well suited for just sending a file. You better believe DropBox gets used for piracy though too. Does that mean file syncing services should be illegal?

    RapidShare exists primarily because email doesn't transport large files. You cannot expect a client to install skype, gtalk, etc. In fact, you don't want all your client's on your IMs, given how easily one can offend older people on IM. Ditto for firewalls, NATs, sshd, etc. RapidShare URLs just works.

    RapidShare also gets used by people trying to save bandwidth, like software developers distributing shareware & crippleware, etc. BitTorrent hasn't exactly been a bandwidth panacea for everyone, plus not everyone understands it.

    If you ever left your IT bubble, you'd realize there is a whole world of small business out there that ravenously consumes simple, cheap, and fast solutions to simple problems. RapidShare has hit back hard for defamation partially because that core user base can have fairly stringent sensibilities.

Mathemeticians stand on each other's shoulders while computer scientists stand on each other's toes. -- Richard Hamming