One of the owners of the ex file sharing service megaupload, Kim Dotcom, was today denied bail.
is was a cloud storage solution which allows users to subscribe to various plans to host and download content. Unlike other hosting services, Kim’s strategy was clever; very clever. He had all the appropriate disclaimers stating that users should not infringe copyright by uploading restricted content etc. but he didn’t actively search megaupload servers for such content. He had a reporting process in place where copyrighted material could be reported for infringing copyright (usually by record labels etc.) but this didn’t stop users renaming content and uploading the content again. Not to mention the removal process was rather tedious and the resolution time lengthy.
So in a nutshell, megaupload would not be seen to endorse such content, however they would financially benefit should people ‘find out’ that such content was available – i.e. people subscribe to their premium service paying monthly fees. In fact, latest reports suggest that megaupload actively encouraged advertisement of copyright material through paying groups of individuals to publicise this across forums, social media, websites etc.
Megaupload quickly became hugely successfully, with reports suggesting visiting figures of over 50 million per day!! At one point it was the 13th most popular website in the world! It seemed like a pretty good deal for users – a small monthly membership fee for access to lightning fast servers, teeming with all the latest tv shows/movies/songs. So twos up to the record labels and artists, let’s make Kim Dotcom rich instead!
Kim Dotcom (Schmitz) supposedly earned a cool $42 million from the site last year alone! While Kim is German, he also has residency in HK and NZ – the latter being where he is currently under arrest. His future is unknown, but given the latest controversy over PIPA and SOPA I have a feeling an example is going to be made of him.
Personally, I don’t think he should be given a prison sentence. Kim is a visionary. He is one of the few people who can influence behaviors and change the world. I should also mention he has the backing of celebs such as Kanye West and Alicia Keys. (And Kanye knows allll about Golddiggas)! And not to mention the support of ‘Anonymous’ hacking group; who at time of writing have already launched cyber attacks on the FBI.
Why not use Kim to help shape the Internet and decide its fate – he clearly understands the modern world better than most.