Thursday, July 23, 2009

Goddamn hippies

'Pirate Party founder Rick Falkvinge, who advocates reforming copyright laws to allow free file-sharing, downloading, and the right to copy everything from the latest Hollywood blockbuster to patented pharmaceuticals.

"The thing is you can't just monitor some internet traffic," he told me. "In order to find out what you want to see you need to see all of it. It's not about swapping music as such. It's about the Big Brother society that is being set up using the excuse of catching file-sharers.

"We know where this road ends, even though each step of the way can be justified, because so many societies have been down it before."

To make the point, activists deluged Swedish parliamentarians with copies of George Orwell's totalitarian satire 1984 ahead of last year's vote.'

'...Some musicians and artists, like Abba's Bjorn Ulvaeus, have spoken out against the Pirate Party, but few will go on the record because the debate is so explosive.' Explosive?

'An exception is Alexandar Bard, a musician behind 100 Swedish top 40 hits, and latterly an academic specialising in the internet.

He says file-sharing is killing the Swedish music industry: "Six years ago Sweden was the third biggest producer of music in the world and last year we were only the ninth.

"So today in Sweden it's impossible to get a recording contract because there are no record companies around to sign with. It means you can't get paid for making music and you can't get a budget to make music.

"File-sharing is not a big issue politically, it's not like climate change or the environment. And the Pirate Party has turned it into a big issue to win votes."

But Pirate Party founder Mr Falkvinge is unrepentant.

"We are going to put the record industry out of business", he says. "And we are very much looking forward to that."'

Oh, ok. I was wondering if the true end-point of these capers was going to be revealed in this article, and it almost is. A country that does not respect property rights ends up a poverty-stricken shithole. Something Mr Falkvinge has never experienced and is therefore looking forward to. Please get back to us Mr Falkvinge after Sweden becomes a poverty-stricken shithole. I especially would want to hear from your children.


Rick Falkvinge (pp) said...


I agree that property rights need to be respected. You will recall that copyright is a monopoly, which is by definition a limitation of property rights.

However, the most important part of the Pirate Party's platform is civil liberties. All the rest follows.


Edmund Ironside said...

How can you 'agree that property rights need to be respected' while at the same time campaigning to have them all revoked? Ludicrous. Anyway, as even the half-educated know, both copyright and patent are time-limited and are therefore NOT 'monopolies'. When you copyright a movie, or patent a new washing machine, you OWN those ideas. People wanting to make money from them have to rent them from you by license. How is that a limitation of the licensees property rights? The licensee HAS NO PROPERTY RIGHTS OVER MY PROPERTY. Right your own goddamn songs you lazy bastard. Make a movie that takes you ten years, and costs $100 million and give it away to people for free. Put your money where your mouth is!
What you call civil liberties are in fact the gifts of rich and hard-working and militarily successful nations, to pampered and lazy morons.