CLBR #256/Kim Dotcom: Caught in the Web Director Annie Goldson

clbr 256 cover

Director Annie Goldson on
Kim Dotcom: Caught in the Web



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The Film

Kim Dotcom: Caught in the Web premiered last month at South by Southwest.

Update – It is Now Available for Download via iTunes.


Goldson has produced a rare thing: a documentary about a controversial Web personality that’s balanced and informative. Ars Technica

I’d consigned Dotcom to being a clown in an overheated intellectual property rights circus but this film rounded out my sense of him.  Gizmodo

. . . the film, which humanizes its antihero, successfully raises a few questions about the nature of piracy, ownership, and motivation . . . Esquire

I highly suggest you see this important piece of filmmaking – it will make you think and force you to choose which side of internet history you belong on. EQ Music

The Filmmaker:  Annie Goldson

CLBR 256 revAnnie Goldson (Tw: @anniegoldson )  is probably New Zealand’s most awarded documentary filmmaker. Her work — including the feature-length Punitive Damage, An Island Calling, and Brother Number One — often examines the political through the personal. Goldson’s films have played widely overseas, and won awards in New Zealand, England, Spain, France, the Philippines and the United States.

Annie is also a writer and her book Landscape, Memory, Dad and Me was published by Victoria University Publications. She has been director of the biennial New Zealand International Documentary Conference (Expanding Documentary); a trustee of the New Zealand International Documentary Festival, Documentary Edge and the Africa New Zealand Film Festival; and was President of the Screen Directors’ Guild of New Zealand.

Receiving her PhD in Film and Television Studies from The University of Auckland in 2005, Annie is a Professor in the disciplinary area of Media and Communication teaching across the production and theory divide.  In 2006 she was awarded an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for Services to Film and was appointed a Fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand in 2017. Annie also received a Research Excellence Medal from the University of Auckland for her film Brother Number One, one of two recipients in the Faculty of Arts and was awarded a Research Excellence Medal from the Faculty of Arts itself.

Kim Dotcom/Megaupload 101

Kim Dotcom (Tw: @KimDotcom), was born Kim Schmitz in Keil, Germany.  His early career in Germany includes convictions for computer fraud and data espionage, insider trading and embezzlement.  He moves to Hong Kong where he changes his name to Kim Dotcom and founds cloud file storage company Megaupload in 2005.  At its peak, the site had 50 million unique visitors and was the 13th most visited site on the internet.

In 2007, Dotcom was granted New Zealand residency and purchased $10 million in government bonds as part of the process.

In 2012, Dotcom and others were arrested in raid, as U.S. files criminal action for copyright infringement, racketeering and money laundering.  Dotcom’s assets were frozen and the FBI states they generated $175 million from the seizure.  The U.S. has sought extradition of Dotcom which remains on appeal.

In 2014, major Hollywood studios and record labels file separate copyright actions against Dotcom.

New Zealand and Hollywood

See separate New Zealand backgrounder.

Next Week

David Sandel Returns to Discuss the State of the Gigabit Cities

David is an accomplished Gigabit City executive focused on leadership, planning and the successful execution of Gigabit Community or Smart City economic development initiatives. As President of Sandel & Associates. David and his team work with cities, community organizations and service providers to develop plans for the economic development of their Gigabit Community or Smart City. In this regard, David currently serves as an advisor to the Google Fiber Mayors Bi-state Innovation Team MBIT and Mid-America Regional Council MARC of Kansas City.

David is also the founder of The Gigabit City Summit. The Gigabit City Summit is a Telepresence based global round-table which explores the issues of leadership, funding, economic development and collaboration that are central to the success of all Gigabit Community or Smart City initiatives. Cities that have participated in the global round-table thus far include San Francisco, Kansas City, St. Louis, Toronto, Amsterdam, Barcelona and Singapore.

Past Shows

The Gigabit City Challenge (January 30, 2012)

The World’s Fastest Internet (May 18, 2011)