On November 1st, Kim Dotcom revealed the URL for his new venture. The new Mega file-hosting service would use Me.ga, a domain operated out of the African country, Gabon.
Obviously the domain itself, Me.ga, is extremely memorable and the fact that it would operate outside the United States was also a bonus. But quickly things started to go wrong. The Gabon government said they would seize the domain but not before a shadowy group called Ome.ga appeared to take control.
But moving forward with characteristic determination, today Dotcom announced that Mega will now rely on a domain controlled by a country he not only loves, but now calls home. On January 20, 2013, Mega will launch on Mega.co.nz.
Picking a Kiwi domain makes perfect sense and is something we discussed here internally last week. Dotcom’s popularity is riding high in New Zealand and as the entrepreneur informed us this morning, he has complete confidence in the legal system there.
“The judiciary in New Zealand works. Judges are independent and not influenced by politics. That has been our experience so far,” Dotcom told TorrentFreak.
The Megaupload founder believes the issues are simple to understand. The new Mega will operate completely legally and therefore the service will be protected under New Zealand law. Lobbyists, he says, can’t do anything about that.
“Prime Minister John Key can have as many dinners with Hollywood executives and copyright lobbyists as he likes. The simple fact is that the NZ government, which has been acting like a subsidiary of the US government, is not above the law,” he explains.
However, while Dotcom predicts reasonable behavior in New Zealand, the same cannot be said about the authorities in the former home of many of Megaupload’s servers.
“The US DOJ has shown total disregard for the laws that were created to protect Megaupload and its users. Our case demonstrates how little respect the US government has for its own laws and due process,” he notes.
Dotcom admits that things can be done, legislatively, to make life difficult for file-hosting services in New Zealand, but that would not only have a chilling effect on innovation, but could also spell good news for the opposition.
“The New Zealand government can try to draft new legislation to ban services like Mega but that would be the end of cloud storage and online service providers in New Zealand and probably also the end of the current government,” Dotcom explains.
“One thing is certain, the new Mega will become a commercial success. It will allow us to fund the best legal defense team money can buy and launch our offensive in all those countries that the US dragged into this nonsense. We will make the DOJ attorneys work day and night while our users can enjoy a truly innovative and ground breaking new Mega.”