Ubuntu – Does the MegaUpload shutdown put Ubuntu One at risk?


File sharing website MegaUpload has recently been shut down because they were hosting copyrighted files and therefore participating in copyright infringement. This has caused other file sharing websites to shut down over similar fears.

I can definitely see the possibility of copyrighted files being shared on Ubuntu One. Does Ubuntu One have to fear the possibility of being shutdown at some time in the future?

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Best Answer

From the "Acceptable use and conduct" section of the Ubuntu One Terms of Service:

All usage of the services must be legal and not infringe any third party's rights. You must not take any action or use the services in any way that might bring Canonical into disrepute, affect the ability of Canonical to provide the services, be illegal, or encourage illegal activities. You may not use the services in any manner that might be libellous or defamatory (more info on what that means), that contains threats or incites violence towards individuals or entities, or that violates the privacy or publicity rights of any third party. Some services have usage limitations as indicated at https://one.ubuntu.com/plans, and you may not exceed these. As part of the services, you may store data on Canonical's servers or those of Canonical's suppliers. You should ensure that this data is not in breach of any applicable law and does not breach any individual's data protection or privacy rights. You shall indemnify Canonical in full for any loss, cost or damages suffered by it as a result of your use or misuse of the services.

I'm not a lawyer, but I think that makes it pretty clear that Canonical does not allow for Ubuntu One to be potentially used for piracy on a large scale.

At any rate, I don't think Ubuntu One is in any danger as file-sharing is not its primary purpose: synchronization between your own personal machines is. I'm not a user of file-sharing sites like Megaupload, but in their case (from what I understand) their site was primarily meant for sharing vast quantities of files between anonymous users. If Canonical's primary plan for Ubuntu One was to facilitate piracy, then they would be more likely to become a target.