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Kim Dotcom's new Mega project (kim.com)
161 points by dutchbrit 1844 days ago | hide | past | web | 136 comments | favorite

I can vouch for Kim's positive traits. He also has negative traits, as do we all - but I don't know much about them.

However he was a customer of AdBrite (a large ad network I founded around 2000) and I spoke with him via Skype many times around 2002. AdBrite is kinda like AdSense in that you can run our ads on your site and make money. And he was running AdBrite on one of his sites.

I don't remember which site of Kim's it was, and I don't remember why we had to kick them out for T&C infraction.

Regardless, he didn't like the AdBrite logo (which I paid a lot for) and told me his designers could make a better one. They did, and Kim let me use it for free. AdBrite raised around $40M using the logo Kim & his team designed for us. And I'm grateful.

AdBrite recently changed logos again so it's not there now. But here's the original (my designer) http://www.storesonline.com/members/963920/uploaded/adbrite_...

And here's Kim's, that we ended up using for years: http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-MsUpdWwPgms/UFOcvPMS74I/AAAAAAAAAW...

The differences are subtle but I believe it made a significant improvement to our brand.

And regardless if you think Kim is a brilliant entrepreneur or a criminal -- you can't deny that he makes very high quality products that people love to use. There's something we can all learn from that.

Thanks for the logo, Kim.

Don't know much about his negative traits?

He was convicted (on separate occasions years apart) of computer fraud, embezzlement, insider trading, and data espionage (carding/etc). See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kim_Dotcom#Criminal_investigati...

I particularly don't like Kim because I find him a walking insult to honest entrepreneurs. Getting rich off of other peoples' work (Megaupload) is shameful, and while everyone else is out there working hard trying to make it legitimately (and often failing), this guy is out there getting rich off of theft, dishonesty, and outright criminal action, and being treated as some kind of hero for it.

I don't like the way the investigation has been handled, but that doesn't make Kim a good guy.

In your mind how do you distinguish Megaupload and Youtube?

Because youtubes primary purpose for existing doesn't depend on copyright infringement. MU was raided because of their alleged blatant infringement and non DMCA good faith compliance.

I suggest you read the evidence in Viacom vs YouTube, their founders admitted as much in internal emails that most of the early traffic was copyright material.


The real answer to my hypothetical question is that there is no difference. One just happens to be run by a German hacker while the other by upstanding citizens of Silicon Valley.

One beat a civil lawsuit while the other has the full force of the US government trying to lock him up for life with a criminal conspiracy case (a bullshit law used to catch mafia figures).

Kim is not a hacker. At least he wasn't when the media declared him one, as he had never written a single line of code. Maybe he learned something since then, but I doubt that. His talents lie elsewhere. He was very good at deception - he somehow convinced a journalist that he was able to hack a GSM phone for example. Or convincing mobsters to invest in his pump and dump schemes. If you understand German, you can follow some of his interactions with the German hacking crowd at http://arnold.babsi.de/KIMBLE.txt. It's not pretty.

Yeah. The scuttlebutt at Google when YouTube was purchased was, "great, but what about when we have to take most of its content down for violating copyright?"

Youtube isn't under indictment because they are complying with DMCA takedown requests in good faith. MU was not.

>>Because youtubes primary purpose for existing doesn't depend on copyright infringement.

If the copyright content is taken off YouTube, their business will fall like a pack of cards.

I go there for free entertainment. And guess how most of it and what kind is served there.

Google is like US government. There are only two rules that apply to them.

1) They don't have to do the right things, but instead what they do is termed as right.

2)If you argue against it, you are against innovation and those thousands of engineers are great because they have memorized a thousand algorithms from the book. And tend mix up only with the same kind.

So, you're saying that you don't distinguish between MegaUpload and YouTube. I commend your consistency.

The logos are practically the same. Cool story though.

The logos were so similar that when I opened them in tabs, I began to question whether the original post was a joke. I'm still not really sure what's going on.

Here's an image of both logos next to each other.


Kim got rid of the 3D, made the colors more bold, and removed some of the outlines. The changes also had the effect of making the word "AdBrite" appear larger, even though (in this comparison) the images are the same size.

Subtle, but was meaningful to me. Because (a) I liked his version better, and (b) In all my years entrepreneuring, it's the first time someone -- unsolicited -- offered to improve my logo for free.

Who does that?

FYI, your link returns "Oops, we encountered an error.

Access denied. You have accessed a location on this server that is not available. You may need to Sign in to your account to access this page."

Aargh. It's some bug with the new Skitch. Is everyone getting the same error?

I'm getting the same error

I am. Not an evernote user.

works for me

I don't like either of them, but if I had to choose one I'd pick the 3D one, it looks smoother and the red in non-3D version is really emotionally negative, like it's the kind of red that makes you angry or scared.

Are you sure you clicked both of them? The first had a really harsh and strong border and looked almost 3D, but in a cheap and bad way. The second is much more subdued and 2D.

Both of them would look very dated today but this was in the early 2000's.

It really must be a mistake or a joke.

They are clearly different; one is 3d. I'm not a designer so can't comment on which one is better, but even I can see that they're different. :)

Kim's version is definitely better. It's much simpler and doesn't rely on superfluous visual effects. The shape of the logo comes through, and it uses fewer colors -- both of which make it much more recognizable.

Remind of certain detergent(s)

That's a pretty cool story :)

ahh AdBrite. I remember trading ad impressions with your nextwork. around the right media exchange days.. ad tech was hot during those times!

It still is. Ad:tech NY is next week.

ahh AdBrite. I remember trading ad impressions with your nextwork. ad tech was hot during those times!

What sane organization would sign up to be a "hosting partner" in this situation? Let's see, most of his last venture's major unpaid creditors are hosting providers, previous hosters spent months after the indictments unable to use their servers and without an ability to bill. Not to mention that he apparently wants quotes with no capex component and requires full built and managed systems including space, power, cooling, data, management and operations on a fixed fee bid before the service launches for what will be impossible to accurately predict growth.

Oh, and by the way, he's willing to let you take part of your payment in ad inventory.


many will in eastern europe/russia. U.S is out of the question

Uh, they are not being paid because the US government decided to dismantle his business, under authority from laws from (probably) the "prohibibiton", "war on drugs" or "war on terror" eras, all of which humanity could have done without.

And they have to keep the systems running because apparently the government can't even provide secure storage of what they claim as evidence.

I was neutral on this guy until I read the wired story, and then I became a fan.

He is a self made man (way more so than romney!), he suffers from persistent discrimination (overweight) and he has cycled thru the hero's journey.

I have heard a lot of these "major success stories", but they are people who have been put in ideal situations and then they made the best of it. That is just emotionally dead for me. Kim's story is more interesting because it is relevant to ME. I can imagine myself in the same spot, and it overlaps with my own personal history (timewise) a bit too.

Ultimately, I believe there is minimal legal differences between youtube in the early days (which was made successful via RAMPANT piracy), and megaupload.

Screw the government.

You are skipping over his history of fraud, embezzlement, theft, etc.

and how he started making even "bigger" air than RIAA and MPAA.

"He is a self made man (way more so than romney!)"

Most every con artist is.

"he has cycled thru the hero's journey"

Now, I think he's gotten a raw, horrid deal from how his most recent case has been approached, certainly. The most he has in common with "the hero's journey" is that his persona is based entirely on myth and self-propagated legend. His claims of personal genius are for the most part fluff and lies, pushed to credulous journalists. Heck, he couldn't even win Quake and Call of Duty bouts without being caught using aimbots and other chicanery.

I may be reading too far into this and his story is more interesting than the man himself, which I agree.

What's with the unnecessary injection of US presidential partisan politics?

We should be better than that around here.

He did quite a lot of shady and downright illegal things, too. He's definitely a self made man, though...

Change the government.

He's a career criminal.

He hacked for profit. He traded in stolen phone cards and turned in his compatriots for reduced sentence. He ran a "premium" phone number scam. He ran a pump and dump scheme to defraud investors. He evaded prosecution by jumping jurisdiction. He tried (and failed) to run a fake hedge fund. He sold pirated software. He committed insider trading.

He's not a self-made man. He's a career criminal and a con man.

I find it shocking that so many people are eager to lionize this sociopathic asshole.

Screw Kim Dotcom.

Why can I only upvote this once? This man is needy garbage who doesn't rate any more attention from the industry that enabled his earlier bullshit.

Did you find it shocking when the Prime Minister of a nation apologized directly for the ridiculous abuse of power and error in execution?


Any raid being apologized for by the PM has nothing to do with his previous exploits which he has already been indicted and prosecuted for.

Okay, so if he's been prosecuted for it and served his time, then he's fulfilled his debt to society, no?

It means "he's a self-made man" is a claim which needs to be shot down, and that's the claim that was being shot down.

How so? If he committed some crime, got convicted, did the time, then started a business and bootstrapped to success, how is that not a self-made man? A great many successful entrepreneurs (Branson comes immediately to mind) were criminals before they were successful.

Some people find it hard to understand that it's possible for an investigation to be mishandled and the person being investigated to still be a criminal.

No, because rule of law is important even when you're dealing with criminals.

I'm not quite sure of the point you're trying to make?

I don't support everything Kim Dotcom does.. but I do support Internet neutrality. I believe (and correct me if I'm wrong) the internet is one of the few mediums where the Government cannot stop free speech.. cannot stop people from posting their "real" opinion and the truth. And one of the few places where after reading an article you can do another search quite easy to ensure it is correct what you just read.

Television, Radio, the newspapers etc try to provide us with news a true as possible though I often question myself when watching the news, is this the entire truth? Is there not more behind it, or things they leave out to ease the mind of the crowd.

That was years ago when he was a teenager. Many people went thru an "illegal period", his was just... more successful than most.

As for sociopathic, so what? Didn't you know that most CEOs are sociopaths? I find that argument... not compelling.

Like it or not, sociopathy appears to be an integral/essential part of human organizations.

"Many people went thru an 'illegal period'..." What?

I think there's a pretty massive difference between the speeding, soft-drugs, petty vandalism and theft that characterise common illegal teenage behaviours and large scale fraud. Even sat behind a keyboard far-removed from your victims I'm sure the difference becomes readily apparent when the number at the bottom of your bank statement is a few digits longer than those of your peers.

That's the problem with the "criminal" term. Don't confuse moral and legalities.

Much better to comment on whether you think he's done something inexcusably wrong or not.

He was 20 and 27. He wasn't a kid doing stupid things. He was a career criminal.

As for sociopathic, so what? Didn't you know that most CEOs are sociopaths?

I don't think that's true. If I'm not mistaken, the percentage of sociopaths among CEOs is somewhat higher than among the rest of the population, but that doesn't mean that the majority of CEOs are sociopaths.

It still means you're implicating a large group for something they are good at doing, which is manipulating an environment to suit their needs.

If you're going to attack his history or his mental state, than at least be willing to acknowledge the man isn't all bad. From what I've read, it seems like some think once a criminal always a criminal, AND that mega upload was a scam.

I don't get what your point is. Are you defending sociopaths? I mean, yeah sure they are what they are through probably no real fault of their own, but they are a net negative on society's balance sheet. They are a problem that needs to be managed. Maybe back in the day when we had to worry about other animals hunting us for food, and a bit later when we had to worry about other tribes murdering us and taking our things, then yeah sociopaths served a purpose.

They don't now.

(Oh, and sociopaths aren't very great at manipulating their environment. The high-functioning ones, maybe, but most sociopaths are poor, stupid, and often in jail.)

I agree that to do better, especially in caring for each other, we need to re-evaluate what we value most.

In a society where money is power however, I don't think you can do much is what I'm saying. Regardless of psychological issues, if someone can function and amass money, then they're regarded as fine and maybe even successful.

My point was people vote with their money and time, and in this case is open. You can't really expect people to care about whether he was a delinquent in some's eyes, because to some, the other side is just as worse.

"As for sociopathic, so what? Didn't you know that most CEOs are sociopaths?"

I would ask for a source here, but I already know that you don't have one, you're regurgitating some pop-psych nonsense you once heard that sounded interesting and you assumed was true.

Steve Jobs and Woz got their start selling Blue Boxes that let you illegally make free phone calls. They just never got caught.


It's likely that many people get away without having their "skeletons in the closet" brought into the light of day.

Didn't you know that most CEOs are sociopaths?

...sociopathy appears to be an integral/essential part of human organizations.


Again, I say: sources?

Most CEOs are also career criminals :p

"Behind every great fortune there is a great crime" -- Balzac

Everyone understand this.

Let me tell you the problem why most people hate, troll and whine about rich people. Its not because others are rich, its because they aren't.

If he did all those things (not saying he didn't, might just be incompetence elsewhere) it should've been fairly easy to indict him at the time or on those grounds.

Still seems awful to wrongly impound an entire company with no due process.

He's been indicted a boatload of times.

He didn't 'hack for profit'. He was a fence with a modem, nothing more.

Welcome to CAPITALISM 101. All ethics are mere shades of grey. What is bad today will be good tomorrow, the villains will be heroes, the heroes will be losers who could have done more and every starry-eyed sucker aspiring to "make it" will swing like a pendulum within that grey spectrum, like it or not.

So, where in the grey zone are you, today?

Kim's personal vices/virtues aside, this seems like yet another iteration of a while loop that has been running for awhile:

  1) A form of piracy exists.
  2) Prosecute!
  3) A faster, more secure form of piracy has been created!

I especially like the DMCA callout on the Hosting Partner's page:

Unfortunately we can't work with hosting companies based in the United States. Safe harbour for service providers via the Digital Millenium Copyright Act has been undermined by the Department of Justice with its novel criminal prosecution of Megaupload. It is not safe for cloud storage sites or any business allowing user generated content to be hosted on servers in the United States or on domains like .com / .net. The US government is frequently seizing domains without offering service providers a hearing or due process.

That's hilarious. The Safe Harbor works fine for Dropbox, YouTube, and numerous others. That's because they don't have people on staff specifically looking for infringing material in order to reward the up loaders and encourage more infringement, and their responses when they are properly notified of infringing material is to actually deal with it instead of just trying to hide it from the notifier so he'll think it was taken down.

So far it has not been proven that Megaupload has violated the DMCA, and it looks uncertain whether the cased against them will even survive long enough for the claims to even get prosecuted, so how is that hilarious?

Whether or not Megaupload violated the DMCA, the US government have effectively demonstrated that if they think you've violated the right laws, it doesn't matter whether or not the courts agree, as your business will be dead before then.

Obviously it hasn't been proven, because the case hasn't been taken to trial. But the indictment is damning; the DOJ has MegaUpload's emails and lays the case out in Kim & Co's own words. For instance:

On or about April 23, 2009, DOTCOM sent an e-mail message to VANDER KOLK, ORTMANN, and BENCKO in which he complained about the deletion of URL links in response to infringement notices from the copyright holders. In the message, DOTCOMstated that “I told you many times not to delete links that are reported in batches of thousands from insignificant sources. I would say that those infringement reports from MEXICO of “14,000” links would fall into that category. And the fact that we lost significant revenue because of it justifies my reaction.”


* When an outsider complained that MegaVideo's hosting of the Showtime pay-tv series "Dexter" had desynchronized audio/video, instead of taking down "Dexter", Kim Schmitz fired off mail saying that fixing the AV problem was a priority.

* Mega employees themselves uploaded copies of major motion pictures to the service, such as Luc Besson's _Taken_.

* There are Mega emails, on which Kim is apparently CC'd, in which employees enumerate the specific files uploaded to certain high-performing affiliate members, noting (approvingly) that they include copyrighted movies and TV shows. For instance, one line item in an accounting mail: 100 USD [USERNAME DELETED] 10+ Full popular DVD rips (split files), a few small porn movies, some software with keygenerators (warez)

There's a widespread misunderstanding of the DMCA on Hacker News and Reddit, and that misunderstanding goes like this: "to follow the letter of the law, you must somehow be responsive to individual takedown requests from rightsholders". That is in fact not correct; it only captures part of the responsibility of service providers under the DMCA. Another responsibility, clearly spelled out in the DMCA, is that you can't operate a service with knowledge of specific infringing content. You cannot know that Luc Besson's _Taken_ resides on your service at a specific URL and then simply wait for a rightsholder to request its takedown. If you operate your service knowing that there are specific pieces of copyrighted content on your site that you're "getting away with" having because nobody's sent you a takedown, and a prosecutor can show that (for instance, with an email obtained during discovery in which your staff does a line-by-line accounting of a promotional program you ran in which you paid contributors to your site to upload copyrighted material, and in that email you specifically make a case for paying one such prolific uploader more because more of their material is copyrighted), you forfeit safe harbor protections.

Finally, and orthogonally, let me just add that while we can't convict Kim Schmitz on the presumption that he is a scumbag fraudster, and the checks and balances in our system of government do require us to dot every 'i' and cross every 't' with regards to chain of custody of evidence, evidentiary standards, and cause for search --- so that if Schmitz escapes his inevitable imprisonment this time, I'll at least be comforted that our legal system takes those issues seriously --- Kim Schmitz gets no such pass in the court of public opinion. The evidence against him in that court is overwhelming. Unless you think the DoJ fabricated his emails, we know he's a crook. You can pretend there's a controversy here, but if you do, my take is you're not allowed to criticize Zynga or evil hedge fund managers and HFTs anymore.

Hopefully this is temporary.

Am I missing something? It's just a... landing page?

For anyone that can't get through here is the site:






Kiwi here and the rumour is that this new venture breaks his parole so back to the little jail cell with a mouldy mattress for him. We're not fans of people that try and bribe/blackmail our politicians here.

Also a Kiwi here and I think actually most of us are more concerned with the Police and Govt's apparent disregard for the rule and application of law.

Kim Dotcom is pretty funny and makes a good case for himself when he's given TV time, but the big story is how much damage the government will take over their buddy-buddy with the MPAA and all the insider dealings they've been up to. Dotcom has exposed a kind of corruption we didn't realise we had.

Heh, I misread "Easy Privacy" as "Easy Piracy".

Haha same here. Cracked me up :P

An the new URL: http://me.ga

Also redirects to http://kim.com/mega/

So why would any sane person try his luck with this sketchy company versus Dropbox, which provides same functionality for free already?

Dropbox has already demonstrated that they play it fast and loose with user privacy issues. While I use Dropbox for many things, and admire what they've built, we'd do well to be more realistic about it around here.

I appreciate your skepticism towards DropBox, but what makes you think that Mega is going to be the host-proof sharing nirvana?

I'm willing to bet that their initial client will be susceptible to MITB and various key leakages for the first year or two.

Nothing makes me think "Mega is going to be the host-proof sharing nirvana," because I don't.

Please, try to respond what people actually say.

I am interested to see how this goes. I am also rooting for the new myspace project. If you have not seen that check it out: ( https://new.myspace.com/ ).

What looks interesting is the ability for the artists to interact with the fans like they would on FB/Twitter on the same medium they could sell their music (I don't think there will be selling of music on the Mega project though).

Right now we have FB/Twitter where it is very easy to keep in touch with the artists and build a relationship and maybe find new ones but no real way to sell things that well. Then their is iTunes where you can buy music but no real community aspect.

I think bringing them together will be interesting. I could see something like a Kickstarter aspect working as well. Fans doing something like we want to see Kanye and Bieber do a song together. People could then show support etc and help chose what gets made.

Ultimately though it has to really help new/unknown artists get started. It's great that Louis CK can sell his stuff online by passing the record companies but that is unrealistic for most people. I system that provides a great community with a great "discovery" aspect could really help this. Fans could be like "I want a song made about blah blah" and some random artist could deliver. Maybe if you are doing a show somewhere you also film it and throw it up on the site for people to watch. Random thoughts. But I hope these provide some exciting opportunities for artists!

I did not knew about the new myspace project, thanks! I like how they bring "a new dimension" to the whole newsfeed/timeline idea by allowing both vertical (not really, tho switching from one page to another could be seen as vertical scrolling) as horizontal scrolling.

Also lovely how nowadays sites and software seem to be getting more simple, clean.. less icons, buttons, modal boxes; and maybe more important, fullscreen use!

"Multi-centric data warehousing"? I don't think Kim knows what the term Data Warehousing usually means.

It's a stupid term, kudos to him for using it in a way that makes more sense.

Just guessed the domain name, since they won't be using .com or .net anymore: http://me.ga/ redirects to that page, I hope that is the domain that they use since its pretty short.

I think maybe he shouldn't have stuck to the Mega brand.

I'm confused to who would subscribe to 'Mega' after the last product called that was raided and everyone lost their data.

    I think maybe he shouldn't have stuck to the Mega brand.
I think the idea they're using is that the US government took them down before and now they're building their product to be immune to that and so because they've been victims before they know what they're doing and that is why people should trust them.

I think.

Or on the other hand, everyone knows its 'that' product with added security?

Seeing a lot of css/javascript screw ups on Chrome. Popups and hover effects look pretty 'janky'. Anybody else seeing that?

Yeah, it really irks me when developers replace an image with another on hover. Just combine the two images on top of one another and use:

background-position: top; and on hover use: background-position: bottom;

This makes the initial hover smooth with no flash.

Thats a fast-paced comeback. And he will succeed again this time with a lot more knowledge how to game the gang in hollywood.

Will be hard for them to even win the case they have put on and at the same time fight him again.

And for all who dont believe it TBP is still around too.

"And he will succeed again this time with a lot more knowledge how to game the gang in hollywood."

Succeed for himself, though I doubt the venture will last.

He reminds me of a lower-classed Donald Trump, in that he's much better at selling his personal brand than he is in operating a business for very long.

It would be very interesting if he decides to use bitcoin or something similar for this.

How volatile is the bitcoin right now? For example, what happens when the bitcoin raises 200% vs. the US dollar? Do you change your pricing? What happens if it then drops the next day?

Bitcoin is a relatively stable asset and currency as far as I can tell.

Bitcoin's value in relation to the dollar is a product of demand and supply, like any other currency. However, given that supply is "hard coded" in the algorithm, supply is more or less a constant variable. That leaves demand.

Demand is there as long as Bitcoin has transactional value (how many people accept it as a form of payment) and asset value (how attractive it is as a store of value). Bitcoin has price floors as long as it is useful in transactions (for example, as long as online black markets like Silk Road flourish) and as long as Bitcoin "enthusiasts" accept it as an asset.

Barring some way for the government to thwart the TOR + Bitcoin combo for making anonymous online transactions, I would think that any volatility in the BTC-USD exchange rate would come from volatility in the value of the dollar over that of BTC.

History tells us that the US dollar is much more volatile than bitcoin can be.

Plus I do not think that Kim will want to have anything to do with that currency.

  > History tells us that the US dollar is much
  > more volatile than bitcoin can be.
There have been at least a couple of recent periods where there was a bitcoin 'bubble.' I'm questioning how he as a merchant, would deal with that (if bitcoin was his main transactional currency)? His customers likely are all using a different currency locally, and would have to exchange that currency for bitcoins.

For example:

Let's say a month of service costs 3 bitcoins, and currently a bitcoins cost 8 rupees (24 rupees/month for service). What happens when the price of the bitcoin rises to 20 rupees / bitcoin? Does the price (in bitcoins) drop? What happens if this significant rise only happens in one market, but not another? What if one 50% of his customer-base experience significant exchange increases, but the other 50% doesn't?

It's a curious thing, because almost no one is being paid (salary/wages) in bitcoins, so they all need to exchange the local currency to pay for service.

  > Plus I do not think that Kim will want to
  > have anything to do with that currency.
I was using the USD as an example. The same comments could apply to whatever the local currency is of his potential customers.

[ Also chances are that if the bitcoin is volatile against one currency it's not not necessary stable against all others. ]

its not that volatile right now, therefore your statement is invalid.

Discussion apart, seriously slick landing page IMHO.

Anyone else having trouble entering their email? I keep getting 404 on the POST:

{"status":1,"response":{"error":"Unexpected error"}}

There is an extra <head> tag in their site, I hope that isn't indicative of their programming talent! :x

Kim just misses his money and fame.

I'd miss my money too, were I in his shoes. Wouldn't you?

but he created trendax - the money making machine. I just assumed he had a never ending money supply after that.

I like the design of the website.

Single-page app for something that really doesn't need to be?

Not even a <noscript> so you're not actually sure if the page loaded or not[1].

Gratuitous animations between slides?

Barest hint of content scattered across slides?

If I was there for informational purposes, I'd say it was a terrible site.

[1] Although I don't really expect people to cater to the miniscule audience that is NoScript/equivalent users[2], it's nice to see at least the tiniest thought towards those who can't/don't have JS.

[2] In fact, there are even some tech-focused sites now that actually ask you to whitelist them for js instead of 'please upgrade to Netscape 3+ or IE5'!

He's soliciting for investors. Isn't that illegal? (Not that he would care)

What? Soliciting looking for an investor is illegal?? (Serious question). I know it's not 100% admirable, but i dont see anything wrong with it. Curious what the law is.

In the USA, public solicitation of investors is a crime.

At least until the SEC rules on the crowd-funding legislation.

Oh wow. Had no idea. Thanks.

In the USA it probably would be... he's in New Zealand.

Yes, its illegal here too unless he filed a registered prospectus somehow.

Didn't stop the USA last time ...

The things he was accused of were illegal in New Zealand also.

Really? I was under the impression NZ didn't have the criminal conspiracy law the US was using.

(Copyright infringement is of course illegal in NZ, but that's a civil matter and not what he was supposedly arrested for).


    131    Criminal liability for making or dealing with infringing objects
        (1)    Every person commits an offence against this section who, other than 
        pursuant to a copyright licence,—
            (a)makes for sale or hire; or
            (b)imports into New Zealand otherwise than for that person's private 
            and domestic use; or
            (c)possesses in the course of a business with a view to committing any 
            act infringing the copyright; or
            (d)in the course of a business,—
               (i)offers or exposes for sale or hire; or
               (ii)exhibits in public; or
               (iii)distributes; or
            (e)in the course of a business or otherwise, sells or lets for hire; or
            (f)distributes otherwise than in the course of a business to such an extent 
            as to affect prejudicially the copyright owner—an object that is, and that the 
            person knows is, an infringing copy of a copyright work.
NZ copyright law isn't structured like US copyright law; it recognizes "primary" and "secondary" infringement like our law does, but its criminal law is is broader; for instance, creation and sale of circumvention devices is an offense directly under Section 131 of NZ Copyright Law, not some wacky add-on law like the DMCA.

Obviously, most countries don't have exactly the same laws as the US.

The email field seems to be broken

It did not work for me in Firefox, but I switched over to Chrome and it then worked.

It doesn't seem to be working on Chrome either for me.

accidentally read that as 'easy piracy' vs 'easy privacy' :)

Jesus people. It is possible to acknowledge that Kim is a criminal, think he is interesting, be interested in Mega, find his criminal history abhorrent AND think that raid of Megaupload was wrong and probably illegal, all at the same time. They're not mutually exclusive and there's no reason for this to be an argument.

Why do Kim discussions always turn into arguments instead of discussions?

Cognitive dissonance [1]. It seems to happen a lot with discussions of Julian Assange as well. i.e. he could be both a "freedom fighter" and a sex offender, and the one person could have both very admirable traits, and abhorrent ones. See also Mike Tyson, Roman Polanski etc etc.

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cognitive_dissonance

welcome to the internet. you're making way too much sense. :-)

I guess it's typical but I've had this idea before. tptacek should stop by with his rant against javascript, client-side encryption.

The other trick to making this idea cool? Once you have the wiring hooked up to make Mega look like local storage (even though it's in the browser), you can wire that up to the PeerConnection Data Channel (once it's available) and literally implement peer-to-peer networks in your browser. There are limitations as you can't use aggressive discovery protocols like with a native socket, but it's still tantalizing.


That's an interesting 5 letters reply.

Does that means you have something to show which might stand the comparison?

The guy did it, has a strong brand recognition and people who publicly expressed their sadness that megaupload was gone and their eagerness to give him their business again.

Now he is out there to get some.

I say good luck to him.

Yeah that's one way of looking at it and I once did so myself. I've seen various projects of Kim Schmitz (aka Dotcom, aka Kimble) since the late 90s and all of them ended up failing because they weren't sustainable in one way or another. But he always came back with something fresh... This time he is trying the same things twice. So my personal opinion: lame.

Do you think that mega ran into trouble the first time because it was lacking substance in some way?

I think mega ran into trouble because it was parked in a grey zone. Also didn't help mega that it was run by someone that in his previous venture ended up getting arrested, deported back to Germany and charged for embezzlement.

The issue here isn't that you need to do something better to critique what someone else has done. You don't need to write a book to have an opinion on a book.

The issue is that it adds nothing useful to the discussion.

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