Kim Dotcom’s Nutty Plan to Save Music

You remember Kim Dotcom, right? The crazy-rich coder who got that way by running Megaupload? The guy the US took down with a SWAT-style assault on his home in New Zealand? Yeah, him.

The whole Megaupload thing is far from settled–that may take years–but even while those trials were just getting started, Kim had a plan to save the music industry. And it’s bonkers. From Variety:

Kim Dotcom is known to be more than a little eccentric. The former CEO of the now defunct file sharing site Megaupload used to partake in illegal street racing, stars in his own Euro-dance songs and once owned a car with a “MAFIA” license plate.

So it’s no surprise that his scheme to save the music industry, which Dotcom laid out in detail in a call with Universal Music Group executives days before Megaupload got shut down by authorities in early 2012, wasn’t exactly about playing by the books either. The real surprise is that his take-no-prisoners scheme apparently was well-received by execs of the world’s biggest music label.

Dotcom published a recording of the call on SoundCloud in mid-August, and the details are fascinating: Megaupload was working on its own music service dubbed Megabox before it got shut down, and Dotcom was looking to license music from Universal for its venture.

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Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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