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Since his hectic election campaign came to a close last month, Kim Dotcom hasn't given a single interview. On TorrentFreak today he breaks his silence, opening up on his fight with two governments, his departure from Baboom, and what he views as almost "religious extremism" employed by the labels and Hollywood to destroy him. When it comes to the online space, Kim Dotcom is undoubtedly one of the most polarizing personalities around. From Megaupload to Mega to his fledgling music service Baboom, everything touched by the man has been bathed in publicity and heated opinion. It is this ability to attract attention that undoubtedly played a key role in his creation of the Internet Party, a political movement with a stated aim to shake up New Zealand politics and put Dotcom-affiliated politicians in Parliament. Last month, however, the elections failed to go as planned. The Internet Partyconceded defeat without winning a single seat, with its founder honoring tradition by politely congratulating Prime Minister and arch-rival John Key on his success. After endless appearances and endless daily tweets, Dotcom essentially disappeared from public life, only breaking his silence to comment on the video game Destiny and his exit from Baboom. Today we catch up with the controversial entrepreneur to find out what happened. â€œBaboom is this great idea of unchaining the artists from major record labels, allowing them to deal directly with their fanbase and using groundbreaking new ways of monetization that pay artists even when fans access content for free,â€ Dotcom told TF. â€œBut Baboom is facing tough opposition from the labels. Baboom has had to deal with unfair and deliberate efforts to make us fail. I wonâ€™t go into details.â€ Dotcom says that for the sake of the artists he wants Baboom to succeed. But, in order for that to happen, a sacrifice needed to be made. â€œThe best way to achieve that success was to take me out of Baboom completely. We have a great management team and some brave investors in place. The brand â€˜Kim Dotcomâ€™ is toxic and a major distractor to what Baboom is trying to achieve,â€ he concedes. While sometimes problematic, Dotcomâ€™s branding is clearly a double-edged sword, one only needs to look at the 2012 launch of Mega.co.nz to see that. On the tiniest of budgets, Dotcom managed to rally the worldâ€™s press to witness the launch of his new cloud-storage site. And without him itâ€™s doubtful that Baboom wouldâ€™ve achieved the profile it has today. But while those same strengths allowed the Internet Party to became a news event every day leading up to the election, Dotcomâ€™s profile and history â€“ by his own admission â€“ became a millstone around the partyâ€™s neck. Every aspect of his private life became a point of leverage for his political opposition. â€œThe Internet Party failed to deliver meaningful change in New Zealand at the last election because of the media spin by our opponents,â€ Dotcom says. â€œThey have successfully turned me into a villain, a German Nazi, a horrible employer, a political hacker, a practitioner of prohibited digital voodoo magic and nothing short of a monster. I would hate that guy too if I didnâ€™t know that it wasnâ€™t true.â€ Dotcom says that part of the problem is that he has powerful enemies who in turn have friends in positions of influence, including in the press. â€œWhen you have the US Government, the NZ Government, all Hollywood studios and all major record labels fighting against you, you donâ€™t have a lot of friends, especially in the media,â€ Dotcom says. â€œThey either own the media (like in the US) or control the media with their significant advertising spending. Their passion to destroy me and everything I do, because of a copyright disagreement, is almost as fanatical as some of the religious extremism I see on TV.â€ So with the election over, and maybe even Dotcomâ€™s entire political career with it, the entrepreneur still has huge adversity to overcome. As he cuts Baboom free and wishes the company every success, Dotcom thoughts and energies turn to his pending extradition case. He knows itâ€™s not going to be easy, especially given the mauling he received at the hands of New Zealandâ€™s political heavyweights in the run up to the election. â€œIf I was a judge in New Zealand I wouldnâ€™t think too highly of â€˜Kim Dotcomâ€™ after months of prime time media bashing by the Prime Minister personally and his media helpers,â€ Dotcom says. â€œJohn Key constantly made the Internet Party and its goals for Internet Freedom about my extradition case and he accused me of attempting to subvert the New Zealand judiciary. He basically told the judiciary every day that Iâ€™m a selfish, criminal man who â€˜has to go awayâ€™.â€ While Dotcom insists his motives were altruistic, there can be little doubt that if the election had gone his way the words of John Key and friends might have meant just that little bit less. As it stands, things went pretty badly. The details of that extradition fight will become clear during the months to come, but in closing Dotcom shared with us an interesting development. â€œAfter 1000 days of waiting we finally got access to our own data (copies of our personal computers / hard drives). Remember, the Government made us wait this long for a single reason only: They demanded access to our encryption codes,â€ he says. â€œBut hereâ€™s the twist: It turns out that the Government had access to the encryption codes all along. Who would have thought that they didnâ€™t install a trojan on my computer while they had the GCSB / NSA spying on me.â€ Kim Dotcomâ€™s extradition hearing is currently scheduled to take place in February 2015. Expect the media circus to get going again soon. http://torrentfreak.com/kim-dotcom-breaks-post-election-media-silence-141004/
One of the lawyers who previously claimed that piracy settlement demands were nothing else but â€œextortionâ€, suddenly switched sides in 2011 and started suing file-sharers. He was trying to clear the past by sending DMCA notices to the domain registrars of the anti-troll websites, but failed to achieve any results. A few years ago, when starting lawsuits against BitTorrent users was a popular practice, lawyers on both sides of the copyright fence understood that there was good money to be made by getting involved. On the one hand, the lawyers were working for piracy monitoring companies to track and then sue BitTorrent users in the attempt of extorting some quick and easy settlement. On the other hand, there were the â€œgood guysâ€ â€“ lawyers who helped people defend against the copyright trolls. Mike Meier belonged to those good guys â€“ a DC attorney who previously placed on the EFFâ€™s list of defense lawyers for BitTorrent users. At the time, he claimed that settlement outfits were bill collectors for the entertainment industry, who were basically extorting money. However, in November 2011, a redesign of his website revealed that the lawyer had switched sides. Now the website was acting as an information portal for people the lawyer himself had sued. In the meantime, the FightCopyrightTrolls article on the topic has remained intact for about 3 years, until last week Meier tried to have it removed. The lawyer was trying to do this bypassing the FCT website operators and their webhost, and going straight for their domain registrar. Meier claimed that various pages on FCT were not just defamatory and libelous, but also infringed upon his copyrights. Although the lawyerâ€™s other allegations are focused there, his copyright complaint seems to be directed at screenshots of his website posted by FightCopyrightTrolls that provide commentary and criticism of his switching sides. Filing the complaint to Internet.bs, the lawyer goes on to warn the registrar that it has, under the law, to â€œremove or disable access to the infringing content upon receiving this noticeâ€, threatening it with the risk of losing the immunity from having a lawsuit brought against itself. Although Internet.bs does not â€œhost a websiteâ€ as Mike Meier claimed, the registrar did not stop the lawyer from doubling up on his takedown efforts. In the meantime, the domain registrar of another website, ExtortionLetter.info, also got a DMCA notice from Mike after it quoted the article that was originally published by FCT three years ago and commented on the same. Thus far, the actions of the lawyer had almost no effect. Neither of the registrars has taken down in whole or in part what he wanted â€“ on the contrary, the articles have now become renewed topics of discussion. If you also consider the method of complaint â€“ which is actually a pair of flawed DMCA notices sent by an apparent copyright expert â€“ the information will now be more visible instead of being removed. Thanks to TorrentFreak for providing the source of the article
A lawyer who described piracy settlement demands as "extortion" changed his mind in 2011 and began suing BitTorrent users. In an attempt to erase the past he's just sent DMCA notices to the domain registrars of two anti-troll websites. Sadly for him, they remain online and history remains intact. Several years ago when suing BitTorrent users was gaining in popularity, lawyers on both sides of the copyright fence saw there was good money to be made by getting involved. On the one hand some lawyers teamed up with piracy monitoring firms to track and then file lawsuits against file-sharers in the hope of grabbing some quick and easy settlement cash. On the other were the â€œgood guysâ€, lawyers who helped Joe Public defend against the corporate might of those who by now were being openly described as â€œtrollsâ€. One such â€œgood guyâ€ was Mike Meier, a DC attorney who previously placed on the Electronic Frontier Foundationâ€™s list of file-sharing defense lawyers. â€œIn my opinion, [settlement outfits] are bill collectors for the movie industry,â€ Meier said at the time. â€œTheyâ€™re basically extorting moneyâ€. Then in November 2011, SJD over at the FightCopyrightTrolls website noticed something interesting. A redesign of Meierâ€™s website revealed that the lawyer had switched sides. No longer was he championing those wrongly accused by â€œtrollsâ€, but instead the site was acting as an information portal for people Meier himself had sued. The FightCopyrightTrolls (FCT) article on the topic has remained intact for almost three years but last Friday Meier tried to have it taken down. He went about that in a quite unusual way too, by bypassing the FCT website operators, bypassing their webhost, and going straight for their domain registrar. Writing directly to registrar Internet.bs, Meier said that various pages on FCT were not only defamatory and libelous, but also infringed upon his copyrights. â€œYou are hosting a website with information that infringes on my copyrights and defames me. I am requesting that you take that information down immediately,â€ his letter to Internet.bs reads. While Meierâ€™s other allegations are focused here, his copyright complaint appears to be directed at screenshots of his website posted by FCT which provide commentary and criticism of Meierâ€™s transformation from one side of the settlement fence to the other. In his communication with Internet.bs, Meier goes on to warn the registrar that as a service provider the law requires it â€œto remove or disable access to the infringing materials upon receiving this noticeâ€ or risk losing its immunity from having a lawsuit brought against itself. Despite Internet.bs not â€œhosting a websiteâ€ as Meier claims, it didnâ€™t stop him from doubling up on his takedown efforts. The domain registrar of another site, ExtortionLetter.info, also received a DMCA notice from Meier after it partially reproduced the article originally published by FCT in 2011 and commented on the same. To date Meierâ€™s actions appear to have had very little effect, the effect he was hoping for at least. Neither FightCopyrightTrolls nor ExtortionLetter have been taken down in whole or in part by their domain registrars, and the articles in question have now become renewed topics of discussion after being forgotten for several years. Add to that the method of complaint â€“ what appear to be a pair of flawed DMCA notices sent by an apparent copyright expert â€“ and the information that Meier hoped to suppress will now be more visible than ever before. http://torrentfreak.com/anti-piracy-...ritics-140826/