So, Who’s Next? FileSonic, FileServe Disable Sharing; Upload.to Down

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Mega’s been seized and its leaders locked up, but who’s next?

Are you next?  Welcome to the very tense, fear-frought climate following the MegaUpload raids.

Go ahead, argue the due process and legal merits all you want – and MegaUpload will do just that – but the US Department of Justice, FBI, and MPAA are wielding gigantic guns here.  And that is forcing MegaUpload’s competitors to consider some very practical scenarios, including the possibility of getting shut down and buried for good.

Over the weekend, FileSonic opted for total insurance: they disabled all file-sharing on their lockers, with almost certain user fallout expected.  FileServe quickly followed suit, with attrition a guaranteed result.  But fleeing users is probably better than a knock (or bang) on the door from the FBI.

RapidShare – among the largest locker-and-hosting services – is confidently staying put, which in this uncertain enforcement climate could be risky. “RapidShare AG was founded in Switzerland and in fact, it was always located at the address given in the company details and was always run under real names without any anonymous intermediate businesses,” RapidShare CEO Alexandra Zwingli told Ars Technica. “The radical measures against MegaUpload were apparently required since the situation there had been totally different.”

But just like FileSonic, others are also playing it very safe, at least for now.  That includes upload.to, which has reportedly disabled sharing and seems to have denied access to US users.  The question is whether this starts spilling beyond locker services, and towards other major players like SoundCloud, Grooveshark, and even Dropbox.

And, anyone partnered or associated with MegaUpload is potentially in broiling water.  In perhaps in the strangest twist yet, Swizz Beats is fighting to distance himself from his CEO position at the company, with lawyers arguing that the rapper and producer never formally started the gig.