Will the real Kim Dotcom please stand up?

As the days pass, the Mana Dotcom sideshow keeps pumping out its peculiar brand of entertainment.

The Mana Party conference has been and gone over the weekend, with its seven branches all agreeing to continue negotiating with the Internet Party. That’s despite the Internet Party still not having a leader or candidates.

The Internet Party then has a party/picnic for 700 members at Kim Dotcom’s opulent mansion, just a day after Dotcom has finished telling Mana’s supporters how he’s so in tune with those in poverty. The irony appeared to escape him. And just to add to the fun, Dotcom announces a policy of free education, but declines to take questions. He won’t say just how far it extends or whether he’s costed it, because it’s Sunday and he’s not taking interviews…

Dotcom’s framing of his upbringing – as the son of an alcoholic father and a mother who worked three jobs, and the stories of sugar or tomato sauce sandwiches – will be told time and time again in the coming months. It’s the only way the proposed Mana Dotcom alliance can be seen to work.

The issue Dotcom (formerly Schmitz) has is whether his life story is in fact true. Cameron Slater, as part of his anti-Dotcom vendetta, has unearthed a few interesting websites (see here and here) dealing with Dotcom’s life:

Either those statements above are true, or his real life was something else.

“Schmitz was born in 1974 in Kiel, Germany, and grew up in northern Germany. His father piloted the luxury cruise liner “MS Deutschland.” His mother was a chef. He attended a posh boarding school, the Staatliche Internat Schloss Plön, and got his first computer when he was nine. Because gaming software cost too much for him to buy, he figured out how to make illegal copies and went into business selling them to friends for a few marks a piece.”

So, how does a man starving and only eating bread and sugar afford a computer in 1983. In the hagiography dictated to David Fisher Kim Dotcom claims that his first computer was not at age nine rather it was at age 11 and a Commodore C-16. Which even in a house that is eating bread and sugar or bread and ketchup seems a bit far fetched that they would be able to afford a computer ahead of food.

Now, frankly I have no idea about what Dotcom’s early life was like. I have no idea whether he went to a posh boarding school or not, and I have no idea what age it was that he first acquired a Commodore C-16 computer. It’s entirely possible that his family’s financial circumstances changed considerably, allowing him to attend boarding school and buy a computer. It might all be covered in David Fisher’s biography of Dotcom, but I haven’t read Fisher’s biography and it’s unlikely I’ll get round to doing so any time soon.

My point is simply that everything about Dotcom feels fake. He creates a persona based on what he thinks his audience wants to hear.

Cameron Slater, having all but called Dotcom a liar, is evidently digging. At this point, all Mr Slater appears to have are websites about Dotcom/Schmitz, containing biographical details and allegations of past untruths by Dotcom which seem somewhat difficult to verify. In the meantime, the bro-mance between Dotcom and Hone Harawira will continue, but the Mana party might pay to give some thought to the possible fallout if Mr Slater drops a further grenade into the ring.


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