Hey NZ Police! GTFO of our Internetz!

The NZ Police raided a house yesterday and arrested some people. Around the same time US authorities shut down a popular website, Megaupload

The first sentence is commonplace, we all know the NZ police love to raid homes (mostly rentals) and arrest people, hey its part of their job. In this case it was an extremely luxurious rental to be sure (thanks Chrisco!). Normally its for life threatening crimes against humanity such as growing herbs in the backyard or holding audio tapes from conversations made by corrupt politicians. This time however it was because they had been working with US authorities in a timed attack on internet freedom under cover of protecting copyright.

The arrest of the people running MegaUpload was quite nicely timed in the middle (well nearing the end) of the debate around SOPA/PIPA (though the spectre of terrible internet controlling legislation will be around for awhile yet). The arrests speak further to the propaganda of ‘stopping piracy’ when really whats at stake are our internet freedoms.

So to the point really, why are the NZ police involved? Lets get political for a second, this article on Stuff by Henry Cooke, has him getting ahold of some politicians and asking them what they thought of the bill (or trying to). It will come as no surprise  to readers of this blog  that Gareth Hughes had the best of the responses; ‘He called the bill “draconian,” mentioned how much “fear and uncertainty” it would cause, harming innovation throughout the world, and “would like to see the New Zealand Government […] express concern through diplomatic channels.” He also mentioned the New Zealand Copyright Act and how legislators with “limited knowledge of the internet are regulating it with chilling implications.” He tweeted today that the Green Party website will be blacking out in protest.’

Labour MP and party IT spokesperson Clare Curran didn’t come out against the bill directly (correct me if I’m wrong) which is standard fare from Labour, all sizzle no sausage. Although, they have retrospectively come out against the ‘Skynet’ bill (which they voted for in the first place allowing it to pass) Labour and it’s MP’s are guilty of being just as un-knowledgeable as some of the rest of the worlds politicians when it comes to ‘Teh Internetz’. Cracks me up. Still, better than nothing from Labour though eh?

Speaking of nothing, National MP Amy Adams, National’s Technology spokesperson, came back to the poor bloke with nothing, not even a ‘Thankyou for your email but we receive a lot of correspondence and no matter what the public say we’ll do what we’re told by large corporate interests‘ type email. Pretty lame if you ask me. But as one of the commenter’s on that same Stuff article points out, that’s standard fare for National, ignore it and hope it goes away, or if it doesn’t, change a law under urgency. No surprises there. If Labour dressed up and took the odd free dinner date from US corporate interests every once in awhile for the sake of ‘beneficial mutual relations’, then National goes straight to bed and skips the foreplay. National and the US are more like best mates than Labour and the US, which at least have a love/hate relationship. Read Nicky Hagers book ‘Secret Power‘.

I won’t get into the other parties, National ACT MP John Banks couldn’t rub two internetz together to start a book burning fire and unconfirmed sources report United Future MP Peter Dunne may still be using Windows NT. Hone wouldn’t have a bar of it I’m sure, he gets it, and NZ First would probably need Curwen’s help to get their head round it.

So back to the NZ Police raiding the homes of ‘internet criminals’, oh wait they were providing a service that non-criminals used too? And now the whole future of the cloud is at stake? Noone wants to upload their files anywhere, legal or not, if the government keeps on shutting down every site that hosts ’em and then steals them all, like some sort of modern day pirates plundering booty to take back to their island where they amass their riches, oh wait… SNAP! Talk about double standards!

This isn’t a blog post about the evils of piracy, its about the evils of restricting the internet and bowing down to corporate pressure so they can ram their views down your throat while making shedloads of money from it, all the while denying people their rights.
Oh and by the way, if you’re against SOPA/PIPA and have been tweeting and facebooking about it, and voted for National, why? Don’t forget that the Greens were the only Party to vote against the Copyright (Infringing File Sharing Amendment) Act 2011 which attempts to do largely the same thing.

5 thoughts on “Hey NZ Police! GTFO of our Internetz!

  1. Cheers, Max. I was contemplating a similar post myself, but being somewhat cautious, thought I might have missed something.

    This morning I read through the indictment.

    All the evidence set out in the indictment seems to indicate is that the proprietors of MegaUpload may have been somewhat reckless about checking copyright of uploaded content (by contrast with child pornography, which the indictment suggests they checked avidly for and deleted offending files) – and that they made a lot of money from their website.

    Okay, that may be an offence against US copyright law – I don’t pretend to be an expert in that. But is it an offence against New Zealand law? If not, there is no reasonable prospect of extradition. Helicopters and all, the whole operation seems like a exercise by the NZ Police to demonstrate to US law enforcement agencies that NZ is up to doing their bidding.

    And remanding the alleged offenders in custody FFS. Surely if they are considered a flight risk, as I suppose people subject to extradition to the draconian justice system the US operates may be, all that is needed to bail them in the knowledge they will not flee is to require them to surrender their passports.

    Like you, the timing looks suspicious to me, given the SOPA/PIPA debate.

    One thing I am curious about is why MegaUpload don’t have mirror hosting sites located outside the US jurisdiction, or if they do, why there is nothing I can find on the net directing us to them. I am aware of a number of (admittedly naive) people who have lost files they thought were secure uploaded to MegaUpload because they didn’t have backup elsewhere.

  2. I wonder how they can arrest every teenager on this planet who has ever downloaded some random file…?

    I guess there’s always Australia. Once a convict colony, always a convict colony…

    What struck me about the raid on Kim Dotcom’s (cool name – like something out of a Robert Heinlein novel) house was their total over-reaction. Armed police converging en-masse, to arrest four computer geeks?!

    Christ, imagine if it had been Osama Bin Laden…

  3. Good overview Max; I finally get teh netz back on in my new flat & your post is there to keep me up with what’s going on around Auckland and he virtual world. Have only seen a bit about this in MSM news.

    How did we end up with extremely wealthy Germans taking refuge in our urban mansions? Amusing.

    The police overkill on the arrest is evidence of our forces’ complete and slavering tail-wagging to any USA agency that demands access to residents of our fair country, whether NZ law has been transgressed or not. See Operation Eight raids, 15th October 2007, for further examples of NZ Police working in ignorance of NZ law, at the behest of US spying agencies.

  4. Hello sir/ma,
    I am kate from Glasgow,scotland,please I want to make a report on a man over there in new zealand,I share tears as I write this mail to you and I want you to really help me and my sister because we have been

    scamed by this New zeland man.
    I met this man online for a very long time ago his name is David alister Oniell,he talk to me about dating and fall for him and we started dating,me and my sister we work as a slave to raise a little money and we

    start a small business selling ipods, and we sell online as well but most of fake people do contact us to ship and get money after payment I told david alister oniell about this issue that most people want us to

    ship ipods to them before we get money, david told us that he know much about selling items online and he promise to help us in getting money from customers so that we will not get scam, he gave us his bank

    account and address

    Bank name: Westpac Bank
    Name: david alister o’neill
    Acc: 030658003078326
    swift code is WPACNZ2W

    David O’Neill
    3/48 elbourne street,
    napier 4112,
    New Zealand

    He said we should provid it to all customers to pay in to his account or pay with western union and after he get the money he will tell us and we can ship the items to the customers, we do as he said and alot of

    customers sent him money, truly he sent us first transaction about 300 usd and secound about 165 usd,but to our suprise for about 2m0nths now customers sent him alot of money about 3,700 USD is with him

    now and if we told him to send us the money customers sent to him he will said is in a special account supper account that he can not get the money out for about 2 months now our business is down, please

    New Zeland police help us me and my sister work as a slave before we get a litttle money to start this business,my sister is in the hospital no very sick because of this money with david, now david said he will

    not give us our money, i have all our conversation for proof and i have is pictures, i have been always told that New Zealand is a good and peacful country so why this? don’t let david spoil new zeland image

    please help me to trace him to his address and get our money out for us…his phone number is +642102446763 please help us we are very poor.
    I will wait to read from you police please help us

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