Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom wants to give file hosting another try — but this time around, he wants to help content owners make money.
Dotcom teased his new venture, dubbed BitContent, with a video posted on Twitter that showed a screen-cast of what seemed to be an early version of the service.
The service will allow content publishers to upload their files and then sell them directly to users at a price of their choosing, with all transactions being handled in the anonymous crypto-currency Bitcoin.
BitContent will apparently launch alongside BitCache, a wallet and payment system meant to manage Bitcoin transactions. Dotcom didn’t reveal the exact launch date of the ventures.
Self-serve digital publishing platforms that allow creators to sell their content aren’t exactly new. In fact, a number of others have already given up on similar ideas. Last year, BitTorrent tried to commercialize its Bundle offering, allowing publishers to charge for P2P-hosted premium downloads. But the company eventually shuttered those efforts, effectively sunsetting Bundles when it fired its two co-CEOs last October.
Dotcom’s combination of self-serve digital content sales with BitCoin could potentially help the company attract publishers that have a harder time with credit card companies and other payment processors, including porn producers. Other than that, it’s still unclear how his venture will differ from any existing transactional content store.
Granted, we do know one difference: Other companies don’t have Dotcom’s name attached to them. The Germany-born internet entrepreneur has repeatedly shown a talent for self-promotion and headline-grabbing stunts.
Dotcom is also fighting an extradition to the U.S., where he is wanted for copyright infringement and money laundering charges in connection with Megaupload, his original file storage and sharing venture that got shut down by authorities in early 2012.