With a website carrying the message “this is going to be awesome” and an app for people to join online, Kim Dotcom’s Internet Party is up and running in New Zealand.
At the top of its “action agenda” is a promise to deliver cheaper, unlimited, high-speed internet to all New Zealanders.
The internet tycoon, who is facing an extradition hearing to answer copyright infringement and racketeering charges in the US, says he aims to stimulate people to vote on technology-related issues and give New Zealanders the opportunity to challenge the status quo.
“This is a movement for the freedom of the internet and technology, for privacy and political reforms,” he said in a statement on Thursday.
“It’s a movement for people who haven’t voted before, who have been disappointed by voting, or who don’t like the political choices on offer.”
Also launched was an app people can use to join online, with a $NZ1.29 ($A1.21) membership fee for three years.
The party’s guiding principles are listed as the delivery of fast, cheap internet, the creation of high-tech jobs, the protection of privacy, and the safeguarding of New Zealand’s independence.
Mr Dotcom says he’s going to become a political force, playing an important role in this year’s election.
Before he can do that he’s going to have to sign up 500 members and register the party with the Electoral Commission.
And to get MPs into parliament he’s going to have the reach the 5 per cent threshold of the party vote.
Mr Dotcom has previously said he’ll close the party down if he doesn’t reach 5 per cent in the opinion polls by the time ballot papers are printed.
That’s going to be about a month before the September 20 election.