Kim Dotcom, everybody’s favourite internet tycoon, is making all the sorts of noises that the public at large like to hear.
Who wouldn’t like another cable to connect us to the rest of the world? Who would baulk at free broadband? Hey, now you get free services from the new ‘Mega’, too!
Pie in the sky. It is easy to make known ambitious plans such as those which come from Dotcom, but turning them into reality can be quite another thing.
When the likes of Peter Thiel, Sam Morgan, Rod Drury, Stephen Tindall and others (with rather more sanitary track records than that of Dotcom) failed to raise the necessary funding, one should rightly reach for a hefty pinch of salt.
What’s more, Dotcom’s own nefarious business practices seem to have come back to haunt him, what with Gabon’s Communications Minister booting the me.ga out and insinuating that Dotcom falls under the definition of ‘unscrupulous people’.
If only New Zealand had such high standards; Gabon is, of course, a rather corrupt little African nation. One is inclined to wonder why Dotcom didn’t try the John Banks approach to getting things done; donation here, expectation of consideration there, you know the sort of thing.
Anyway. Dotcom’s cause wasn’t helped in the least by the fact that Vivendi evidently runs much of the telecoms over there on the sweltering West Coast of Africa. Perhaps it knows how business is done in Gabon better than Dotcom does.
But back to the present. With me.ga off the cards, things progress apace. Dotcom now intends to show his appreciation of all things Kiwi, with the new proposed site to be located at www.mega.co.nz.
Very good; again, there is something in it for the public, with the promises of free broadband which were made with the Pacific Fibre posturing now augmented with promises of free Mega-services (don’t you infringe copyright, now, y’hear! We’re still cosy with the USA, y’all) for all and sundry.
Be that as it may. Certainly, Dotcom is a capable and very clever man. But he is dispensing promises of free stuff a little early – Santa is only due in town in a couple of months – and whether or not these are idle remain to be seen (don’t hold your breath, please).
The smart money, and that includes Rod Drury, says no, sirree.
And yes, Napster comes to mind with the whole relaunch idea. Kim, some advice: that ship’s sailed, find another.