If there was one guy who could stand up to the U.S. Government, thumb his nose and shout “come and get me!” it would be Kim Dotcom. Made famous after Uncle Sam failed to bring him down for his Megaupload website (which was being used as a major repository for illegal music, movies, child porn and other questionable online activities), Kim’s latest website (simply “Mega”) was the last public online mirror where people could download Defense Distributed’s Liberator files (for their 3D printable gun). But now it appears that Kim himself has browned his pants at the idea of the files being on his server and decreed that they be removed by his web minions . . .
ZDNet has the story:
Kim Dotcom, founder of Mega, has said that the designs for a 3D-printed gun were “scary”, and has deleted public links to its blueprints from his file-sharing website.
Dotcom said he was not contacted by the US government, but became aware of its plans to shut down public links to the designs.
“I think it’s a serious threat to security of the community. I think it’s scary that people can print 3D guns that can’t even be detected by metal detectors … This should concern everybody,” he told Radio New Zealand.
If I were a betting man, I would have wagered that Kim Dotcom would have been all for freedom of speech and openness. Instead, it looks like the man who is most famous for proving that the internet is incapable of being censored is trying to do the exact same thing himself.
Let me (using my network security hat here) take the example of child porn to illustrate exactly how useless it is to try and censor the internet. We can all agree that files depicting the abuse and exploitation of children are despicable and should be erased from the internet forever. But those files keep popping up and new ones are added every day. They won’t go away, no matter how much we as a society want them to.
You can’t delete something from the internet. You can’t stop the signal. For better, or for worse.