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Kim Dotcom: "I'm No Piracy King"

Illustration for article titled Kim Dotcom: Im No Piracy King

Kim Dotcom may be many things—international playboy, car collector, ladies man—but as far as he's concerned, a pirate he is not. In his eyes, he's simply a man who offered a storage solution.

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Released on bail last week, Dotcom has wasted no time in talking to the media. He has a bit of a way with words and, speaking to the Guardian, he managed to compare his problems with the Iraq war:

"It's kind of like weapon of mass destructions in Iraq, you know? If you want to go after someone and you have a political goal you will say whatever it takes."

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But it's not all quite that cringe-worthy. He manages to be fairly philosophical—if one-sided—on the topic of piracy. Again, speaking to the Guardian, he said:

"Where does piracy come from? Piracy comes from, you know, people, let's say, in Europe who do not have access to movies at the same time that they are released in the US.

"If the business model would be one where everyone has access to this content at the same time, you know, you wouldn't have a piracy problem. So it's really, in my opinion, the government of the United States protecting an outdated monopolistic business model that doesn't work in the age of the internet and that's what it all boils down to.

"I'm no piracy king, I offered online storage and bandwidth to users and that's it."

Way to oversimplify, Kim! But, embracing his self-proclaimed innocence, he's planning "a safe future for [his] kids". Maybe he should wait until his extradition hearing, scheduled to begin in Auckland in August, before he firms anything up. [The Guardian]

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DISCUSSION

As I recall, there are a ton of other charges on him, but he will be known for being the owner of a "piracy" website.

He is somewhat right, in his defense. He is a guy who owns a website, the website became popular, there is not much else to the story of Megaupload. If I build a 6-lane highway that is regulated the same as any other 6-lane highway and funded by advertising, how am I responsible for people who travel the highway with drugs in their possession? He didn't encourage people to do illegal things. I mean hell, I just used Mediafire on Monday in order to send my family members a 200MB zip file that contained vacation photos. There is a logical reason for the existence of these websites. Sorry if not everyone who uses the internet is ethical.

Megaupload went down in spectacular style because it WAS a political agenda. There WAS a chilling effect, there is no convincing case that MU was designed or intended for illegal activity nor is there any case that MU can be responsible for the user-uploaded content on the servers. Much of the illegal content is split, encrypted or password protected, anyhow. At the rate files were being put on the site, there is no possible way that MU could possibly filter the content. You may as well take down YouTube for the same crime. According to YouTube, 48hours of video are uploaded every minute. How can any website effectively monitor that much content? Especially when the content is not publicly available for viewing.

Oh, and where does piracy come from? 4 things, I can think of:

1) Media purchasing is moving away from physical mediums, and the Industry is not holding up their end of the deal to provide more content to more people at a fair price point. Rather, they are providing less content to less people, under more restricted access, at a higher price point.

2) Many people are fed up with the media industry's greed, in some way, and wish to rebel.

3) Many people simply don't have access to what they want to see.

4) There are plenty of people who are still going to steal, no matter what.

I would put myself in all 4 categories, personally.

1) I've got cash in hand for a Netflix subscription. All you gotta do is make Netflix good by not blacking out release dates, not signing exclusivity deals so that you can pull out and go to Hulu, and simply providing the content and service that I was promised at the price I was promised.

2) The industry has become nothing but lawyers and other kinds of assholes. F.U., all of you pricks

3) I watch a lot of fansubs that don't air in my country.

4) You want me to pay $20 for a disc that I'm going to watch once? Baaahahahahaha!