Kim Dotcom Announces “Lobbyist-Proof” Domain for Site
For those of you who follow the Indie Nation News, you know we have followed Kim Dotcom and the MegaUpload story for some time now. While it was recently announced that the new domain would be “me.ga”, it seems that he has met snags in securing that particular domain.
Before we get into any of this news though, here is our usual disclaimer. Those of us here at Indie Nation DO NOT endorse, encourage or support illegal activity. We feel this story is important not because MegaUpload may or may not have been a hub for piracy but because it is a classic example of a government ignoring due process, the needs of its citizens and listening only to corporations.
That said, Mr. Dotcom, according to several sources such as Torrent Freak and ARS Technica, has announced that he will be hosting his site(s) in New Zealand. The new site will be mega.co.nz and is now up and running. This new venture is supposedly “completely” legal. While this may imply that earlier ventures allowed some legal activity, I must note that ALL the user’s of MegaUpload were not using the site illegally and the government still shut down ALL of the site.
In the end, the now famous raid, will certainly be remembered as an illegal raid lacking due process. Thus Dotcom’s motivation for New Zealand, quoting Torrent Freak:
“The judiciary in New Zealand works. Judges are independent and not influenced by politics. That has been our experience so far,” Dotcom told TorrentFreak.
All in all, I am not surprised. Mr. Dotcom, in the context of due process, in my opinion has a very valid point. I am confident that there are other business owners who would also consider such when choosing a host country. If the Internet is the future of commerce, should a country not make its borders a desirable place to host a server?
Also, note that I am waiving my editorial and free speech flag as I say this, is it not terribly ironic that government largely responsible for his current motivation is one which boasts of being “innocent until proven guilty”? Sorry folks, not only does the USA send entirely the wrong ethical and legal message when it acts as it did in the Dotcom raid, but I am one who believes we are simply motivating e-business to do business outside the USA.
- Kim Dotcom’s Sequel To MegaUpload Is Finally Online (businessinsider.com)
- Dotcom’s Mega storage site sets up shop in New Zealand (techhive.com)
- Kim Dotcom Chooses New Zealand as Home for His ‘Mega’ Project (mashable.com)
- Dotcom’s ‘ultimate file hosting solution’ to be launched on Megaupload raid anniversary (EndtheLie.com)
Former Defender Now Goes After Those He Defended
A post over at Torrent Freak reports that a DC attorney, Mike Meier has changed sides. The attorney was once known as a bit torrent defense attorney. He was even listed as a defense attorney at the EFF site.
Arr Maties! We Got Yar Trademark!
I think this one rather ironic. An article over at Torrent Freak brings to our attention that amidst all the confusion regarding the now defunct Pirate Bay, the trademark was left unprotected. While the article states that a gaming company plans to resurrect the site, it seems they may have to do it with out the famous trademark of a pirate ship.
It was previously reported that the recording industry (RIAA or Racketeering Idiots Association of Absurdity) was not going to give any of the money awarded in the recent LimeWire settlement to the artists. The story at The Huffington Post referenced a post at Torrent Freak and reading it today it reminds me of the news re-writes in 1984. Strangely the Huffinton Post now claims that the Torrent Freak article was incorrect. The original Torrent Freak article reads:
RIAA spokesman Jonathan Lamy previously told TorrentFreak that the ‘damages’ accrued from piracy-related lawsuits will not go to any of the artists, but towards funding more anti-piracy campaigns. “Any funds recouped are re-invested into our ongoing education and anti-piracy programs,” he said.
Hmmm…. seems like a pretty clear to me. Based on the track record of the RIAA have any artist actually received anything from these lawsuits? Remember they announced the end of the “sue em all” campaign? Now if they announced the end of it, why do they need to “re-invest” any of the settlement money? It seems that what he previously said was taken out of context… Or is it just being re-written?
It has been a long while since we did a pick of the day here. We are still debating whether we do one daily or not.
However, we did decide to do today’s a bit different and special. First off, Lumpy is not doing this one solo, Dallin and he are going to have much conversation about this band and their method distribution.
Today’s pick of the day comes with some news as well. Dallin and Lumpy thought they might expand on this particular pick of the day. We talk much more than usual for this podcast but we make it up by including more than just one song.
BitTorrent has been making waves in the news, lately!
Yesterday I wrote about Paramount releasing a feature film via BitTorrent. Also yesterday, TorrentFreak broke the news that indie band Sick of Sarah had broken a BitTorrent record by making their album 2205 available for free via their service.
The album reached 1 million downloads in just 18 days. It may have had something to do with the fact that BitTorrent bundled the album with their software and users had to opt-out if they didn’t want the album.
Still, a download is a download, and topping one million is an impressive feat. Clearbits tracker reported 82,943 seeders as of March 16th, for a music torrent that is unheard of.
One of the reasons Sick of Sarah went with BitTorrent to distribute their album is wanted to reach a greater audience and hoped it would attract people to their concerts and merchandise.
Only time will tell if they actually see an increase in concert attendance and merchandise sales, but it’s safe to say that Sick of Sara has put themselves on the indie music map – and the Internet map in general – simply by being open to distributing their music via BitTorrent.
You can hear Sick of Sarah’s music on indienation.fm.
- Indie Band’s Album Tops 1 Million Downloads via BitTorrent (lockergnome.com)
- Major Movie Studio to Release Film… via BitTorrent? (lockergnome.com)
- Indie Band Sick of Sarah Partners with BitTorrent (appscout.com)
Most of the time, when we hear the words “BitTorrent” or “Torrent”, we associate it with piracy and distributing content illegally.
However, as we explained on the show, a torrent is just a way of distributing or sharing content over the internet, and is not in and of itself illegal. What it comes down to the content that is being shared/distributed. We are strongly against downloading or distributing protected content illegally via torrent or by any other means, but BitTorrent can be a very efficient way of legally sharing content.
A Slashdot blurb links to a story at TorrentFreak revealing that Paramount Pictures will be releasing its much anticipated horror movie “The Tunnel” via BitTorrent, making it available online for free.
This is a significant development, especially in light of the vehement opposition to BitTorrent from most large movie studios like Paramount.
It should be noted that “The Tunnel” will also be released simultaneously on DVD which will include extra footage and bonus features not included in the official BitTorrent version.
Still, could we be witnessing the beginning of a new era in how movie and television studios distribute their content?
If so, Paramount is on the cutting edge.
- Major Movie Studio to Release Film… via BitTorrent? (lockergnome.com)
- Paramount Movie World Premiere on BitTorrent: PR Stunt or The Future? (fastcompany.com)
- Paramount to launch movie on BitTorrent first (electronista.com)
I love it! Add to that it is long overdue. I got wind of this from TorrentFreak and think it is totally kewl. If you go to the front page of Adamant Records and look just to the right of the Sick of Sarah post, you will find “Bot Torrent Explained“. I am glad that not every label is drinking the RIAA KookAide (no, I spulled it like that intentionally).
Yes, I am aware that there are others as well. The Adamant Label is not the first and hopefully not the last. However, since I am so prone to point out when the music industry does stupid things, I feel I should also not when they do things right.
- Record Label Teaches Music Fans BitTorrent (torrentfreak.com)
- Music Piracy May Be Going Away But It’s Not Dead Yet (crunchgear.com)
- Piracy Fight Shuts Down Music Blogs (nytimes.com)
- The Next Generation Of Music Services Need To Go Beyond Replicating The Analog In The Digital World (techdirt.com)
This story over at Torrent Freak is another example of just how wrong things have gotten regarding intellectual property and copyright. Before I even begin, I wish to reiterate that I do not endorse piracy. I choose to give my money to the artists who embrace the new media order and don’t wish to sue me.
In this particular case, it seems pretty clear that this group of file-sharers were actually sharing material in an illegal manner. According to the Torrent Freak Article:
The hub, which in very basic terms operated a little like a BitTorrent tracker, directing traffic between other members of the network, was known as Sarah’s Secret Chamber. It had around 1,600 users and most of them were sharing large amounts of copyrighted material.
In normal circumstances, most members of this type of network will bring some of their own content to the party, pooling resources so that the hub has a library of material. Very often bringing large amount of content is a requirement for membership. Sarah’s Secret Chamber had a fairly large capacity – around 50 terabytes.
The suit filed claimed they “created 750,000 ‘illegal albums'” and demanded 2.7 million in damages. For the sake of argument here, let us just assume they are guilty. Also for the sake of argument, I strongly disagree with this verdict and sentence.