Dotcom: Record Label Pressure Forced Mega Radio Ads Off the Air

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In yet another twist in the incredible life of Kim Dotcom, the Internet entrepreneur has revealed that a set of ads to promote the launch of the new Mega this week have been canceled at the eleventh hour. Broadcasting company MediaWorks had been contracted to run several radio ads hundreds of times, but according to Dotcom pressure from recording labels has now resulted in MediaWorks backing out of the deal.

How much does it cost to run a worldwide advertising campaign for an soon-to-be-launched Internet company? We’ve done a few calculations and come up with the terribly scientific answer of “an awful lot.”

But while some companies undoubtedly spend tens of millions of dollars promoting the birth of their new cyber-babies, it can be done for much less with the right staff. If you want a prime example of getting the most bang-for-your-buck, look no further than the example set by Kim Dotcom.

Ever since he announced that Megaupload would be reborn as Mega, Dotcom’s words have been echoed around the world’s tech and mainstream press, creating millions and millions of pageviews and huge publicity at minimum cost. Nevertheless, even the mighty Kim Dotcom needs some exposure AFK, and to this end his company recently invested in some traditional advertising. Unfortunately, things haven’t gone to plan.

To publicize the launch of the new Mega this week, the company invested in a series of radio advertisements. The ads – featuring Kim Dotcom of course – were due to air on radio stations owned by MediaWorks New Zealand, a large local television, radio and interactive media company.

But this morning Dotcom delivered some bad news – the ads would no longer air as planned.

“Unfortunately Mediaworks pulled the plug on our radio ad campaign,” he explained. “Apparently some music labels complained to Mediaworks about our radio ads. Booking of over 500 ad plays terminated. Wow!!!”

Dotcom added that he isn’t holding MediaWorks responsible, describing the Auckland-based media company as having “great people”, but is instead laying the blame at the feet of his recording industry opponents.

“It’s the music labels that are abusing their power, again,” he said, while putting out a request for non-MediaWorks radio stations to contact him to do a deal.

In a comment to NZHerald, a MediaWorks spokeswoman confirmed the campaign had been pulled.

“For commercial reasons we are not playing the Kim Dotcom advert,” she said, declining comment on the exact reasons behind the decision.

This is the second time that perfectly legitimate business efforts to launch the new Mega have come under attack. Last year the first choice domain name was seized by the government of Gabon acting under external pressure to punish Dotcom.

Ever resilient, Mega will now launch under the “lobbyist-proof”


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