Warning: If you are coming here expecting to read about Dotcom, one of my favorite characters from 30 Rock, then you are about to be majorly disappointed. If you have no idea what I am talking about, then read on. The feeling will pass shortly.
According to the Washington Post, Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom appeared in court in New Zealand today (sidebar: he is known as Kim Schmitz, but Dotcom is a pretty inane nom d’plume if you ask me) and for now, he is going to remain in custody while the Court determines the issue of bond.
At a hearing in Auckland, NZ, he denied being guilty of the internet piracy charges being levied against him by the United States government. His attorney argued that he doesn’t pose a flight risk – however, the judge wanted more time to make his decision, “given the breadth of issues covered in this bail application,” as well as the “seriousness” of the issue. (Source).
However, things are not looking good for Mr. Dotcom and his fellow one-eyed cyber-colleagues. The FBI is seeking to have Dotcom and three of his accomplices extradited to the United States. Megaupload was shut down on January 20th by the Government. It seems that the raid has scared other cyberlocker services into following suit. The Washington Post also reports that FileSonic and FileServe have since ceased the practice of allowing members to share files they have uploaded.
There are many implications of this news, least of which is a slightly 1984-ian vibe that surrounds the whole drama (if you ask me). If you didn’t think Big Brother was watching you watch episodes of The Vampire Diaries on IceFilms before all this went down, then guess again. Remember, this announcement seemed to be almost instantaneous with all the Twitter celebration about the people finally defeating SOPA, and all the other navel gazing about how “we can has internets.” Was SOPA really the victory that we were touting it to be? If it was, it was awfully short-lived. Regardless, the timing could not be any better for those who support SOPA (i.e., the MPAA).
And if you will recall my post about the Playstation Network attacks , you may remember a little known hacker group, going by the name Anonymous – who seems to be emboldened by the news about Megaupload. Anonymous retaliated against the Megaupload raid by taking down the Department of Justice website. With all the buzz about not censoring the internet….well, perhaps taking down a government website was not the best way to prove that we don’t need more supervision of who we are googling during morning lectures (if you are into that sort of thing). From my perspective, I can see both sides of the coin. Anonymous is trying to make a point, but perhaps they are unwittingly fueling the all encompassing piracy fire that the MPAA (and a dwindling number of SOPA proponents) are trying to quell.
When considering the events of the last week, maybe the government doesn’t really need SOPA after all. It seems they are more than capable of taking down an internet behemoth without asking any questions already. What do YOU think of the current developments regarding Megaupload? And more importantly, how are you catching up on your backlog of Desperate Housewives?
Sound off in the comments below.