MegaNet: Kim Dotcom’s Encrypted Networking for All
Which is preferable, free Internet susceptible to spying and tampering, as is the case with Mark Zuckerberg’s next big project, or encrypted, potentially very expensive, crowdfunded Internet provided by the Web’s most legendary pirate king?
If you believe Kim Dotcom, world citizens will soon enough have a choice. The MegaUpload founder and potentially most successful pirate-by-proxy ever, has been alluding to a new communications protocol dubbed MegaNet for years. In a more recent interview, included below, Dotcom tells Max Keiser that MegaNet is a real ambition that currently has raised $40 million through private crowdfunding. Dotcom also intends to raise another $100 million using Bnk to the Future in January, a relatively new crowdfunding site that apparently has no issue taking Dotcom on as a client.
Some key features of Meganet:
- Will not be IP-based.
- Will incorporate block chain technology.
- Will natively incorporate mobile devices.
No IP? No Problem
Not including an IP address by design could have serious implications on the privacy capabilities of such a protocol, but it could also run into fundamental networking problems. Readers will be quick to note that an IP address is not the only way to track down the activities of a user, and often enough they can be irrelevant. Even an MAC address could essentially be a false entity when dealing with the right sort of bot net. The question, then, is how will this be done? New software protocols somehow incorporating bitcoins, mobile phones, and Bluetooth, or something?
If Dotcom is reinventing a wheel, he seems to be reinventing a wheel that needs it. Within a very short period, Max Keiser’s investment fund had rounded up a percentage of that $100 million Dotcom still wants to raise. Add to this the fact that a significant portion of populations that could afford an alternative Internet have shown interest in preserving their online privacy (93% of Americans agreed that controlling who had access to information about them was “very important” in May).
A real market could form around alternative communications protocols, but if Dotcom were not the only one there, he’d also not be the only one reaping rewards from it. Such a protocol revolution would have to be able to interface with the rest of the Web, and Dotcom would also have to deal with the Einstein problem, that is, what if repressive governments like North Korea use his advancements to actual decrease freedom, rather than increase it?
The video talks largely about the on-going MegaUpload court case, but at about 7:00, Dotcom claims that “denial of service attacks [will be] a thing of the past” but gives us little insight into how this could be done. This is technology we’re talking about, and simply including something in your list of deliverables does not necessarily equate to a bullet-proof feature addition. Regardless, Dotcom is evidence of some truths in modern history, but one that stands out is that necessity is the mother of invention. Had there been no base level information for the government to build its case against Dotcom on, MegaUpload might still be operating, blissfully unaware that government agents were waiting to destroy the life of its owner and creator.
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