Image Wikimedia: Mylius
The recent U.S. federal shutdown of MegaUpload has displaced a large number of file sharers. For those looking for alternative ways to share files online, it is important to know about the characteristics of legal file sharing services like SendThisFile.
The following is a list of attributes typical of legal file sharing services:
1. Users Pay-to-Play
Since the whole point of piracy is to get something for nothing, services requiring users to pay for their bandwidth sharing provides a strong economic incentive against piracy.
2. Responds to DMCA takedowns
The Digital Millenium Copyright Act (DMCA) contains a section called the Online Copyright Infringement Liability Limitation Act (OCILLA) which criminalizes copyright infringement on the Internet. Any company that does not respond to DMCA takedowns is simply not complying with the law.
3. Files sharing scope is limited
By default, lawful services seek to protect files spiraling out of the sharers control, and are not intended to be accessed by an unlimited number of users. SendThisFile asks that you enter the email address of the person with whom you wish to share files. We don’t host files long-term either, so files are securely deleted from our system after sharing.
4. Located in lawful countries
Fileservers and headquarters of the companies you choose to do business with should be located in countries that reciprocate the laws and values for copyrighted work. SendThisFile is headquartered in Wichita, Kansas, and all it’s servers are hosted in the United States.
So what should you NOT look for in a file sharing website?
Any 100% Ad-supported website that does not charge users for file sharing, who does not respond to DMCA notices, hosts your files for long term public access, and conducts business from outside the reach of the law should be avoided. Doing business with such a company puts you and your files at risk, while encouraging piracy.
Since 2003, SendThisFile has fit the mold of a legitimate business empowering users to legally share data for business or personal use online.