Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Music Entertainment

Kim Dotcom Alleges Studios Wanted to Work With Megaupload 139

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the sociopaths-versus-sociopaths dept.
Fluffeh writes "In a recent story that is beating around the nets, Kim Dotcom has fired back at studios with emails that make for some interesting reading: 'A Disney executive e-mailed Megaupload in 2008. He said he was interested in having Megaupload host Disney content, but said he would need Megaupload to tweak its terms of service to make it clear Disney retained ownership of files uploaded to the site. He sent Megaupload a proposed alternative to the standard Megaupload TOS. Fox emailed "Please let me know if you have some time to chat this week about how we can work together to better monetize your inventory," in an attempt to promote their newly launched ad network. And finally, this gem: a Warner Brothers executive e-mailed Megaupload seeking to expedite the process of uploading Warner content to Megaupload. "I would like to know if your site can take a Media RSS feed for our syndications," he wrote. "We would like to upload our content all at once instead of one video at a time."' Pot calling the kettle black anyone?" Torrentfreak is running the full interview with Kim Dotcom.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Kim Dotcom Alleges Studios Wanted to Work With Megaupload

Comments Filter:
  • by bdabautcb (1040566) <bodaciouswagglerNO@SPAMyahoo.com> on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @07:07AM (#39483131)
    What would happen if an individual tried to send Disney a revised TOS for one of their services?
    • Re:Revised TOS? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @07:46AM (#39483375)

      If you had millions to invest in Disney, they would listen. You sound mighty naive.

      • Re:Revised TOS? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by aaaaaaargh! (1150173) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @08:23AM (#39483651)

        Perhaps he's idealistic, but he might not be as naive as it seems. If millions of people would send Disney a revised TOS (or any other company whatsoever), they would have a serious problem.

        Here is something to try out, just for the fun of it: Read the EULAs and TOS when you buy or lease a product, make changes to the contract, and then send the changes back to the company with the note that you do not agree with the original contract, and do all of this within a short period after purchase. Some people in their legal department will probably hate you, but the worst thing they can do is keeping you from using the product, in case of which they'll have to pay you back the full price.

        Should work great with software and all kinds of content where you're not given a complete contract to sign before buying the product. (Obscure links and small print on the packaging doesn't count.) Now if only enough people would do that with Sony products...

        • they=Disney

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by tehcyder (746570)
          You need to read up on contract law a bit. When you pay a shop for goods, legally you are making a tender and they are accepting your offer. At that point, the contract is complete, and you can't just go back and demand another contract, any more than you can re-negotiate the price.

          Someone selling to the public would obviously have to consider customer relations, but if they could see you were just dicking them around, I imagine they'd tell (in so many words) to fuck off and try to get a refund from th
          • Re:Revised TOS? (Score:5, Informative)

            by Umuri (897961) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @10:41AM (#39485025)

            Correct me if i'm wrong, but I think YOU need to read up on contract law a bit.
            The contract of sale is what is complete when you pay for a product, however any additional contracts, such as EULA, TOS, etc ( which is what the parent poster was talking about) are extraneous to that. In addition, they cannot just put a note saying "you agree to the contract by buying this", because that violates the contract law requirement of meeting of the minds.

            Basically, if you buy a product, and then open it to find an EULA saying they get your firstborn, you can mail their legal department with an counter-proposed contract, and if they in turn reject that, they are liable for your full cost of obtaining their product originally. Either that, or you can use it and declare their EULA void and hope that it holds up in court (which has stricken down many shrinkwrap licenses in the past).

          • by rtb61 (674572)

            Point of correction. Whilst this is true in most of the civilised world in some US states corrupt legislators via criminally applied campaign donations screwed over the consumer at the behest of corporate interests made post purchase End User Licence Agreements legal. Which flies in the face of the cost to the consumer to make the purchase and effort required to view the post purchase contract alteration (this cost should also be legally refunded plus the effort required to purchase an alternate not includ

          • by metacell (523607)

            You need to read up on contract law a bit. When you pay a shop for goods, legally you are making a tender and they are accepting your offer. At that point, the contract is complete, and you can't just go back and demand another contract, any more than you can re-negotiate the price.

            That sounds fine to me. The problem is that the manufacturers try to change the terms of the contract *after* you've purchased the product, when you've opened the packaging and got a chance to read the fine print.

            And the courts allow them to do this, unless the consumer complains within a reasonable amount of time.

            But if it worked the way you describe, I'd be perfectly happy.

          • by sjames (1099)

            Of course, that would invalidate the EULA as well since you don't see it until after the transaction is complete.

        • by mcgrew (92797) *

          As a victim of Sony's XCP trojan, all I can say is the only thing Sony customers should do is stop being Sony customers. That company needs to die as horrible a death as possible.

        • by the_B0fh (208483)

          This is insightful? Seriously? The Anonymous OP stated that if you had millions. If it's a contract worth millions, Disney will make an exception for you to their TOS. No idea why this concept is so difficult for people to understand.

          We're not talking about $19.95/month here guys. We're talking about a shitload of money.

    • Re:Revised TOS? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by MasterMan (2603851) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @08:22AM (#39483643)

      What would happen if an individual tried to send Disney a revised TOS for one of their services?

      Eh, what is your point? Feel free to send Disney your revised TOS. They can either accept or reject it. Just like MegaUpload could do.

      They weren't forcing MegaUpload to change anything, they were just pointing out the parts that would need to be changed in TOS if they were to use the service. Seems like standard business negotiations.

  • by Issarlk (1429361) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @07:11AM (#39483149)
    Looks like it's time to arrest him again, for rape this time.
  • Sun Tzu (Score:4, Interesting)

    by bhlowe (1803290) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @07:17AM (#39483169)
    Know your enemy.

    The studios wanted to have a legitimate relationship going so they could have some leverage or ability for one on one discussions about the pesky little problem of rampant piracy on his site.
    What did you expect Kim to say, that he preferred doing business exclusively with illegal file sharers?

    • Re:Sun Tzu (Score:4, Informative)

      by metacell (523607) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @07:48AM (#39483391)

      MegaUpload paid well-known artists to upload their own content.

    • Re:Sun Tzu (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Motard (1553251) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @07:55AM (#39483451)

      More like a carrot and stick approach. "Here's a way we might be able to work together and both make money ina a cooperative way...(and failing that, we'll see your butt in jail)"

      • Here's a way we might be able to work together and both make money ina a cooperative way...(and succeeding that, we'll see your butt in jail and make all the monies for ourselvesies, my precious)

        FTFY. The music industries wanted Kim Dotcom on a leash so that they could better drag him to Shelob's lair.

      • by mcgrew (92797) *

        There are two kinds of armed thieves. One uses a gun that fires bullets, one uses a gun that fires cops.

        (meme stolen from The Who)

  • Yep (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jythie (914043) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @07:17AM (#39483173)
    Not surprising in the least.

    It really seems like the studios are using threats of various laws as tokens in negotiating favorable terms in business deals rather then as tools for actually protecting their IP.
    • It really seems like the studios are using threats of various laws as tokens in negotiating favorable terms in business deals rather then as tools for actually protecting their IP.

      Right, because that other reason copyrights exist (to improve the public's access to creative works) is so relevant these days. In this century, the point of copyright is to create a favorable environment for certain businesses, nothing more.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Not surprising in the least.

      It really seems like the studios are using threats of various laws as tokens in negotiating favorable terms in business deals rather then as tools for actually protecting their IP.

      Of course. Look how much they pay for those laws:

      http://www.opensecrets.org/industries/indus.php?ind=B02

      • Re:Yep (Score:5, Informative)

        by PopeRatzo (965947) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @08:11AM (#39483573) Homepage Journal

        Of course. Look how much they pay for those laws:

        Google: American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).

        They are the clearing house for all laws that are purchased by corporations. They'll even write the law for you and then helpfully handle the "lobbying effort" to get the law passed. And by "lobbying effort" I mean they will pump millions into the campaigns of lawmakers who will push and pass their laws. And by "push and pass" I mean the way you push and pass a rock-hard stool. And by "stool" I mean Republican.

        I'm putting the above to music, in my effort to re-make Schoolhouse Rock for the 21st century. "How to get law passed if you are a wealthy corporation" is the title of this one.

        • by PRMan (959735)
          At the end of such an Informative post you actually compared "Republican" to "turd"? Wake up man! Both sides are the same! Don't you know that by your comparison all you're communicating is that you're a pawn of the media? Besides, we're talking about media companies, not oil and war contractors, so if your blaming leans at all, it should lean left.
          • by PopeRatzo (965947)

            Besides, we're talking about media companies, not oil and war contractors

            Media companies, oil and war contractors are often parts of the same conglomerates.

            In the case of the members of ALEC, you'll find some of each. All funneling legislation to Republican-controlled state houses all over America. Oh, and as a Democratic congressman recently learned the hard way, the American Legislative Exchange Council has a strict "No Democrats Allowed" policy. They don't publicize it (in fact, they don't publicize a

  • I wonder... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @07:21AM (#39483187) Journal
    These little gems do certainly paint the entertainment industry's hatchetmen in the most mendacious possible light(not that they need the help, or that this was news to anybody); but what I'd be delighted to know is whether they correctly dotted their 'i's and crossed their 't's legally speaking...

    Strategically, having somebody like Megaupload as a promotional channel makes a great deal of sense: zero cost(to them) distribution channel used, at least initially, by a highly cost-sensitive(but, if capturable, quite desireable, youth market); but with enough legal and general sleaziness to keep the Disney moms away and offer them a way of squeezing and/or cutting off at a later date(as they appear to be attempting now).

    However, as the copyright holders, it is conceivable that they may actually have authorized MegaUpload's activities, at least for some of their material, when they crossed the line from 'merely ignoring' to 'actively aiding and abetting and discussing how to more efficiently upload themselves'. If the person uploading does actually have the power to authorize uses of a copyrighted work, it is conceivable that even those flimsy "Yup, I totally pinkie swear that I'm the copyright holder and this is A-OK" clickwraps that many of the cyberlocker types have you click through could actually end up meaning something... That would be hilarious.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      However, as the copyright holders, it is conceivable that they may actually have authorized MegaUpload's activities, at least for some of their material, when they crossed the line from 'merely ignoring' to 'actively aiding and abetting and discussing how to more efficiently upload themselves'. If the person uploading does actually have the power to authorize uses of a copyrighted work, it is conceivable that even those flimsy "Yup, I totally pinkie swear that I'm the copyright holder and this is A-OK" clickwraps that many of the cyberlocker types have you click through could actually end up meaning something... That would be hilarious.

      The fact that an authorized copy of a work is made (even if it is made for free) does not mean that it automatically becomes public domain and any further copies can be made without restriction by anyone who feels like it. Even if the copyright holders uploaded some stuff onto MegaUpload it would not inherently authorize everyone else to upload anything they want.

      If Megaupload had a contract with the studios they would be fine. Having evidence that the studios at one point discussed hypothetical contracts t

      • by green1 (322787)

        Actually it may mean more than one might think. Having proof of the discussions proves a possibility of non-infringing use. This is one of the excuses people always use as to why google is ok, but megaupload isn't, they claim that google has legitimate uses, despite the massive amounts of "illegal" content available, whereas they hold that megaupload doesn't and is primarily for illegal use.
        Proving that you have been in talks with "legitimate" organizations (wow... I can't believe I just called the MPAA leg

      • Obviously an authorized copy being made doesn't make something public domain(very few things do make something public domain); but, if a copyright holder uploaded anything to MegaUpload(as the request for an RSS feed intake suggests that they might have done on at least a limited basis), it is entirely possible that the uploader clickwrapped their way through a clause giving megaupload the nonexclusive right to redistribute what was uploaded...

        It sounds like some(eg. Disney) were just nibbling, and tryin
    • nonsense (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Shavano (2541114) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @08:47AM (#39483905)

      What it shows is that the studios tried to work with him in a manner that would have had them being paid when he distributed their content. They gave him every chance to have a legal, mutually agreeable working relationship and he screwed them over anyway.

      All his admirers want is for somebody to help them steal.

      • by green1 (322787)

        Actually without reading the full text of the discussions with the studios, you could just as easily claim the opposite. Perhaps it shows that he tried hard to work with the studios to come up with a mutually agreeable working relationship and they screwed him over anyway.

        Without seeing both sides' positions, how can you claim to know which of the two was being unreasonable?

        • Personally, I believe it was more "both sides tried to gain an unfair advantage over the other and ended up getting screwed" situation. Of course, getting screwed doesn't affect a multinational corporation as much as it does an individual.

  • work (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @07:21AM (#39483191)

    So in 2008, 4 years ago, they tried to work with him. That apparently didn't work out, why didn't that work out, and how?

    And why would that have any impact on what is going on now? If they tried to work with him, but he refused and then started monetizing their copyrighted works on his own, without their permission. Wouldn't that just bring him in more trouble now?

    Obviously i didn't RTFA and I'm hoping this really hurts the case of MPAA/RIAA etc. instead of Kim's.

    • by jamstar7 (694492)

      So in 2008, 4 years ago, they tried to work with him. That apparently didn't work out, why didn't that work out, and how?

      Better question. Keeping in mind the laws today are the same as they were 4 years ago, SOPA et al didn't go through and all that, why did they wait 4 years to drop the hammer on him?

      • by metacell (523607)

        It appears they waited for SOPA to give them a stronger case, but when that failed, they used the second best solution.

        • by jamstar7 (694492)
          Considering the SOPA laws weren't even a gleam in a lawyer's eye four years ago, and by *AA's math they've been bleeding like a sieve, the question still remains. Why did they wait so long to drop the hammer?
  • ...if Kim could go work with the big industry where he could cash more money and have no worries about copyright, why would he go alone and take the risk?
    • by lxs (131946)

      I doubt that money is DotCom's main objective. He could easily live his dream of being an independent larger-than-life millionaire on the money he made with MU. Why sacrifice all that and become a middle manager at Disney?

    • Probably because a) he didn't want to have to answer to anyone else (or share profits), and b) he didn't care about the risks (or wasn't worried about them).

      I mean, I was surprised at the Kim Dotcom raid, but only because the raids were successful and Megaupload got nuked off the 'net. Up until this point, pretty much everything the MAFIAA has done to stem file sharing has been like fighting the hydra; cut one head off, two grow in it's place. The Pirate Bay has been thumbing their noses at the MAFIAA for

    • Of course, you're assuming that these media companies would actually pay him. It's more likely that they'd rig the contracts to make sure megaupload never got paid, the same way they do with directors, actors, and bands. "Yes, you'll get X% after the costs of Y are recouped. Unfortunately, Y has an infinite cost and will never be recouped, because I pay myself out of Y."

  • ... and he's a fraud.

    • by amoeba1911 (978485) on Tuesday March 27, 2012 @08:21AM (#39483631) Homepage

      So? Chris Dodd is a fraud [zdnet.com], you don't see him being arrested. Nobody is even investigating him, even after he openly admitted to congressional bribery... because the people who would need to start the investigation are the same people who he bribed.

      Let's face it, Kim Dotcom is a fraud, but so are the people he's fighting against. Kim is guilty of not bribing the right people. He should have used some of his massive profits to bribe politicians like Chris Dodd of MPAA did, then he wouldn't be in this situation. In a world of frauds, I root for the newcomer fraud.

  • God I hate business-speak. "Work together to better monetize your inventory"? Three words' meaning over the span of seven Dilbertian words...
  • Is there any way to verify these emails are real? Dotcom is a known "shady character", what are the odds these are fakes to get attention and distract from his legal issues???
  • It sounds like the studio bosses have decided to hedge their bets. On the one hand they are constantly busy lobbying to have laws passed to introduce more censorship that will hopefully be effective enough at countering piracy. On the other hand they may actually realize at some point that their lobbying efforts are futile and want to try out new business strategies, but of course any such efforts are bound to take place while their anti-piracy policing efforts are still in full swing.

    So perhaps the next

Recent research has tended to show that the Abominable No-Man is being replaced by the Prohibitive Procrastinator. -- C.N. Parkinson

Working...