But the government asserts that Megaupload merely wanted the veneer of legitimacy, while its employees knew full well that the site's main use was to distribute infringing content. Indeed, the government points to numerous internal e-mails and chat logs from employees showing that they were aware of copyrighted material on the site and even shared it with each other. Because of this, the government says that the site does not qualify for a safe harbor of the kind that protected YouTube from Viacom's $1 billion lawsuit.
For instance, the abuse tool allegedly does not remove the actual file being complained about by a rightsholder. Instead, it only removes a specific Web address linked to that filebut there might be hundreds of such addresses for popular content.
Employees also had access to analytics. One report showed that a specific linking site had produce[d] 164,214 visits to Megaupload for a download of the copyrighted CD/DVD burning software package Nero Suite 10. The software package had the suggested retail price of $99. The government's conclusion: Megaupload knew what was happening and did little to stop it.