Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: The Mega Conspiracy

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  • Rich of Observationz,

    I'm not sure how to think on this. One one hand, all billionaires are predicate thieves from the people and should be flung in jail, at least until they disgorge their ill-gotten gains.

    On the other hand, I don't think NZ should be acting as America's colonial policeman. I believe that (a bit ironically) the Germans refuse to extradite to the US, presumably because they don't consider them to have a functioning justice system.

    Also, if Schmidt is guilty of money laundering, is the NZ state complicit in this by accepting a cheap $10mln loan as payment for residence? Will we see Key, English or at least the head of Immigration arrested next?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4471 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    Will we see Key, English or at least the head of Immigration arrested next?

    O I rylly rylly hope so!

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    SkyNet: Pay up, tune in, zone out.
    SkyNet: Where we vampires always pwn you zombies

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8615 posts Report Reply

  • Geoff Lealand, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    A mild thrashing at best, Craig. I have real problems with a full-time lobbyist representing the interests of a monopolistic private company, rather than the interests a broad sector of the population, such as trade unionists. Indeed, the activities of O'Brien are really a corruption of democratic processes.

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2327 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming,

    What Geoff said.

    In an ideal world, where all viewpoints are given equal weight, there might be value in commercial lobbying but that's not how the world works. Consequently, commercial interests tend to out weigh private interests or even national interests. Mostly, they preclude evidence-based policy-making as well, though not as badly as in the US. Yet.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2189 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to BenWilson,

    Who's best for selling T-shirts online? Maybe CafePress for global sales, but I'm thinking someone more local would be ideal.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4403 posts Report Reply

  • Dylan Reeve, in reply to Rob Stowell,

    Mostly with you. Dylan, but it already has changed a great deal. And we’ll see more change. NZ more-or-less missed the cable boom, but that fragmented markets in the US and Europe.
    Lots of ‘shopping channels’… but also HBO making direct to cable shows- including some of the best TV drama ever produced- that have never been broadcast free-to-air in the US.

    Same thing... The content is first and foremost licensed for broadcast, internet rights are secondary to that (and usually bundled).

    Although NetFlix is starting to commission original content - that could make a big difference.

    Auckland • Since Aug 2008 • 259 posts Report Reply

  • Dylan Reeve, in reply to Sacha,

    Unless a government with balls regulates otherwise.

    No government will regulate away an entire business model. TVNZ, TV3, Sky - they all depend on the ability to exclusively license popular content.

    Auckland • Since Aug 2008 • 259 posts Report Reply

  • Rob Stowell, in reply to Dylan Reeve,

    The content is first and foremost licensed for broadcast, internet rights are secondary to that (and usually bundled).

    Youtube/Google are putting a few bucks in too. Worth a read, if this is an area that interests you.
    Some of the channels here and another view here
    It could turn to dust fairly fast, but I dunno- could work. I watch a fair bit of youtube these days- but nothing like as much as my kids.

    Whakaraupo • Since Nov 2006 • 1582 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Dylan Reeve,

    No government will regulate away an entire business model.

    Telecom.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16838 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX,

    NZ will have become a “bananed republic” if the application for extradition is a success.

    I would suggest that the application was submitted in draft form for consideration of the Courts to see if it would be accepted and matter progressed from that point as it did.

    After a deemed appropriate time to consider the issue has passed I feel Mr Dot Com and friends will sadly be on a plane to the good old USA.

    The peril of innovation and making a fortune that does not involve paying children to make devices for less than 0.50c an hour.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1203 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Rob Stowell,

    Youtube/Google are putting a few bucks in too. Worth a read, if this is an area that interests you.

    That is interesting. Certainly niche has been the way to go for some time in a number of industries - as long as the niche is big enough to make it sustainable. In physical terms, NZ has always suffered from scale issues, but when the world is your potential audience...

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2189 posts Report Reply

  • Pete,

    Anon seem rather grumpy - anyone know the local time for this shitstorm to happen, if it does?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=5LlaF2AoL-o

    Since Apr 2008 • 90 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Geoff Lealand,

    A mild thrashing at best, Craig. I have real problems with a full-time lobbyist representing the interests of a monopolistic private company, rather than the interests a broad sector of the population, such as trade unionists.

    Geoff: Trade unions represent (and lobby for) the interests of their members - some better than others, and a few in ways that make me wish a bus would jump the curb and put them out of my misery. And there's absolutely nothing wrong with that; but while YMMV, I don't want Helen Kelly, Tony O’Brien or whatever toss-monkey is running the NZRU pushing draft legislation in front of ministers. I didn't vote for them - and they're not bound by the ethical and professional norms of the public service -, and I'd prefer all lobbyists operate in the full light of day.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12046 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to Pete,

    Anon seem rather grumpy – anyone know the local time for this shitstorm to happen, if it does?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=5LlaF2AoL-o

    Here’s the update video. They seem to be keeping their powder dry so far.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4403 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    jump the curb

    Peripheral, but I'm struck by how this US usage has replaced the previously common "kerb" in a few published articles in NZ lately. Nothing personal, just a culture shift reflecting that broader dominance of another country's thinking. Much like the IP discourse.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16838 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Exactly how much the hip hop producer Swizz Beatz was really the CEO of Megaupload is unclear, but it seems he's not the only one in that world to think Megaupload was not a bad thing.

    A Techdirt story compiled his tweets thus:

    1st of all I am soooo proud of my brother @THEREALSWIZZZ 4 being apart of creating something (MEGAUPLOAD) that could create the most powerful way 4 artist 2 get 90% off of every dollar despite the music being downloaded 4 free...

    With labels and companies doin' deals with Spotify and many other companies like it who doesn't give us shit continue 2 do what they do and blatantly show us how much they value the artist with doing deals of such disrespect and lack of value 4 our content...

    I am proud 2 stand next 2 my brother @THEREALSWIZZZ and fight the good fight...Our freedom is truly being fucked with in a very significant way and I strongly suggest 2 all artist especially the 1's Swizz repped 4 comes out & reps 4 him!!!

    Fuck that I say it again...I'M PROUD OF MY BROTHER @THEREALSWIZZZ #GREATMIND!!

    That's an interesting point. Spotify is legit and earns artists fuck-all. Megaupload is dodgy and earns (some) artists decent money.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 19019 posts Report Reply

  • anth, in reply to Matthew Poole,

    That the shotgun was in a safe is irrelevant, as its very presence in a panic room would be prima facie evidence that it was owned for self-defence and that’s not considered a lawful purpose.

    On the other hand I believe that gun owners are required to keep their weapons secure, and presumably the safe room is the most secure part of the house.

    If there had been a home invasion and he’d sat in that room until the police arrived they’d probably have praised him for being a responsible gun owner who neither took the law into his own hands nor let the evil-doers get hold of the gun. That didn’t happen of course, all we know is that the gun wasn’t used.

    Well, in a way there was a home invasion and he sat in the panic room until the police arrived. It wasn’t quite as I meant in the previous paragraph though.

    Since Nov 2006 • 77 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Spotify is legit and earns artists fuck-all. Megaupload is dodgy and earns (some) artists decent money.

    Makes sense who the entrenched middlemen would go after first.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16838 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Sacha,

    The OED would suggest that they're two perfectly acceptable alternate spellings, both of which have ample precedent in English prose - though you're quite correct that the k- usage is more common in the UK. But hell, when reading Australian newspapers I still mentally insert a vowel into 'Labor' - and there's a fascinating back story there. :)

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12046 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to anth,

    That didn’t happen of course, all we know is that the gun wasn’t used.

    It was also a sawn off shotgun, not commonly used for anything except scaring people at close range. Owning that is nearly the only thing I would hold against Mr Dotcom. Except the matter of befriending Mr Banks (I wonder if Banksy told him he should really keep the gun under his bed).

    Banksy conveniently can't remember anything about the time he drove out to Coatesville in his overcompensating red Ferrari, and had dinner with Dotcom. These things happen when you're mayor.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8615 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    True. I was talking about actual usage in NZ.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16838 posts Report Reply

  • bob daktari,

    the effects of this action are starting to kick in online (via Anonymous ) - assume SOUP is SOPA

    MegaUpload - Closed.
    - FileServe - Closing does not sell premium.
    - FileJungle - Deleting files. Locked in the U.S..
    - UploadStation - Locked in the U.S..
    - FileSonic - the news is arbitrary (under FBI investigation).
    - VideoBB - Closed! would disappear soon.
    - Uploaded - Banned U.S. and the FBI went after the owners who are gone.
    - FilePost - Deleting all material (so will leave executables, pdfs, txts)
    - Videoz - closed and locked in the countries affiliated with the USA.
    - 4shared - Deleting files with copyright and waits in line at the FBI.
    - MediaFire - Called to testify in the next 90 days and it will open doors pro FBI
    -Org torrent - could vanish with everything within 30 days "he is under criminal investigation"
    - Network Share mIRC - awaiting the decision of the case to continue or terminate Torrente everything.
    - Koshiki - operating 100% Japan will not join the SOUP / PIPA
    - Shienko Box - 100% working china / korea will not join the SOUP / PIPA
    - ShareX BR - group UOL / BOL / iG say they will join the SOUP / PIPA


    would be amusing (well I think so) to see all these services continue but just ban all US users - time to taste the joys of geoblock...

    the ongoing ramifications of the web & our useage of will be interesting to see - file under another potential (cost effective and efficient + revenue earning) distribution model being killed (attempted) off rather than employed by content owners

    auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 356 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    500k on fireworks, 90k on a hospital, donation style that Banks did not forget.

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Graeme Edgeler,

    So, when someone says "those are drugs", the police should wait until after trial before seizing the wads of cash when they raid a drug house? And the drug-sellers should be able to continue selling their drugs until tests are back and confirmed by a court that those were indeed illegal drugs?

    Wrong analogy.

    So the police have evidence that a couple of safe deposit boxes in a bank contain illegal goods. They then shut down the bank and all it's websites and branches.

    The bank remains closed until the case comes to court?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3434 posts Report Reply

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