back to article The Pirate Party is the shape of things to come

A clear winner is emerging from the Digital Economy Bill - and it's the UK Pirate Party. The penny only really dropped for me yesterday, after the Open Rights Group's big demonstration at Westminster. "What was all that about, Andrew?" someone asked me in the pub afterwards. He'd been at the Commons for a meeting, and walked …

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Big Brother

Swedes vs Brits

How much do the UK Pirate Party's aims differ from those of the original Swedish version?

The latter seemed to be as much about a battle against the creeping censorship, 'net monitoring and general population-control that started (rightly) with the control of kiddy porn before moving into the realms of digital media (the implicit question being "then what?").

All quite noble. Of course, a few free choons is the flip-side, but at least they made a reasonable attempt at some form of righteous indignation. If the UK PP concentrate too much on the actual sharing side they won't really be able to claim much of the moral high ground.

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IIRC

Our pirates want 10 year copyrights, while the Swedes want 5 year copyrights. They both want fewer patents, and especially fewer patents on medicines. They both ask for more freedom of speech and improved privacy (reformed libel laws, court orders to spy on communications and stuff like that).

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Heart

F

Amen to that other Steve...why are all PP supported A/C?

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Troll

Oh wow...

On Slashdot, there is a popular phrase which is applicable here.

*WHOOSH!*

The Pirate Party *WILL NEVER* be a major political party. They *WILL NEVER* run the country. Not one of them thinks that they will, and in that sence they're very much like UKIP, Green, and the BNP; They each have a group of voters who they represent, who want to *INFLUENCE* legislation in which they, and their electorate, are interested.

The party needed a manifesto because without it they would just be aimless. With a set of published ideals nobody can say they're just a bunch of "freetards" who want music for bugger all money or effort.

In short, well done on completely missing the point of The Pirate Party. But hey, don't let logic stand in the way of a good rant! After all, that's what the Daily Mail^W^WThe Register is good for.

By the way, the icon isn't for my post.

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FAIL

"WHOOSH" is right

That was the sound of you rushing full speed toward those conclusions without actually reading the article. The buzzer you are about to hear is the Fail siren.

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Megaphone

:D

"With a set of published ideals nobody can say they're just a bunch of "freetards" who want music for bugger all money or effort."

The Pirate Party are a bunch of freetards who want music for bugger all money or effort.

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Copyright duration..

I seem to remember there was a large investigation done into copyright terms, and approximately 10-15 years duration was calculated to be the optimum time of protection required to enable a content owner to make the money from their work, and allowing the greatest benefit to society by introducint relevant 'culture' into the the public domain (which in turn allows more ideas bsaed on this to prosper).

Lapse of copyright means that you can publish anything in the public domain that you wish to. So, that'd be cheaper paperbacks from your favourite author 15 years after publication as competition widens the market, or cheaper access to music 15 years after (or maybe free for electronic items, though I think the ISPs would charge a little more for the bandwidth, being a 'publisher'). Hell, you could make money from seeding the 'free' stuff..

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FAIL

Oh goody ...

"I seem to remember there was a large investigation done into copyright terms, and approximately 10-15 years duration was calculated to be the optimum time of protection required to enable a content owner to make the money from their work,"

Then you can post a link to it so that we can all see it.

"Lapse of copyright means that you can publish anything in the public domain that you wish to. So, that'd be cheaper paperbacks from your favourite author"

Without my 'favourite' author getting a penny. Why would I want to do that to my favourite author ?

"or cheaper access to music 15 years after"

Let me give you a concrete example here, Slade's "Merry Christmas" is still feeding Noddy Holder's children*, do you want Noddy's children to starve ? Well ? DO YOU ? Should Noddy go out and get a shelf stacking job to put food in his children's mouths just so you can get 'cheaper' music ? Because this is precisely what you are proposing should happen.

*yes, I know, ta.

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Silver badge

And copyright isn't the only IP law

Short copyrights would not necessarily harm companies (the original Statute of Anne which kicked this off was a 14 year period with the option to renew once only for a further 14 years if the original author was still alive)

But copyright is not the only protection creators have on their products. Trademarks don't expire so long as you continue to use them. The oft-repeated case of Mickey Mouse and copyright law is a complete red herring (one spun successfully by Disney I might add).

Even if MM's copyright expired tomorrow, Disney would still have all the rights to the character because MM is trademarked. Disney would lose the exclusive right to redistribute archival MM as copyright expired on the movies (they make negligible amounts anyway), but the company would still be the only ones able to make new MM materials or licence the wretched rat's image.

Let's go back to 14 year copyright terms, one renewal, none of this nonsense about 'x years after death' - there's no justifiable reason why the law should guarantee the great, great grandchildren of an author an unearned source of income.

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hm

http://arstechnica.com/old/content/2007/07/research-optimal-copyright-term-is-14-years.ars

"Without my 'favourite' author getting a penny. Why would I want to do that to my favourite author ?"

Even if the copyright expires, there's nothing stopping you from giving the author money. Also, it would be difficult for someone to publish a book whose copyrights have expired but many aspects of it are still trademarked, because that probably class as counterfeiting.

"do you want Noddy's children to starve ?"

Don't care about his children. If I die, I could leave my kids money and a house. Why should his children get money, a house and something that magically keeps making more money even though he's dead?

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Silver badge

Do you want Noddy's children to starve?

No I want them to go out and earn their own fucking money.!

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Yes ...

"Don't care about his children"

.. that's what I thought.

"If I die, I could leave my kids money and a house. Why should his children get money, a house and something that magically keeps making more money even though he's dead?"

When you die, your assets will continue to appreciate in value. And Slade's back catalogue doesn't make money by 'magic', so I think I can see where you're getting confused.

What happens is radio stations want to play it, because it's popular, so they pay for it, and he gets some money. See ? No wonder the freetards are angry if they think all that happened by magic.

Anyway, I think the take away message here is that you want Noddy Holder's children to starve so that you can get free stuff.

You aren't nice.

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FAIL

lol.

If I build a chair, should I get paid every time somebody new sits in it?

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FAIL

Free data inside

"Without my 'favourite' author getting a penny. Why would I want to do that to my favourite author ?"

Here is some news for you: Actually most profit for the sale of a book is made in the first ten years after publication, and when I say 'most' I mean something close to 99%. And the same happens with music. The only exceptions to this rule are artists like The Beatles, Madonna or Bruce Springsteen. On the other hand, those artists could gain a boost in sales for their new works after appearing in some cheap compilation made, say, 12 years after the original publication.

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FAIL

Oh yeah, and I checked the 'research'

The chap who did it "Pollock has been an advocate for restricted copyright terms and stronger public domain for years"

E.g. for years before he wrote the paper you're referring to (which is neither extensive, or even a study, or even research, but speculation couched in equations), which gives him a credibility rating of approximately zero, at least it does if we apply, say, the same level of rigour to his analysis as you would to that of a record company releasing a study saying P2P and related piracy is costing them money. Viz : he is very firmly in camp X and therefore everything he says is polluted by that fact.

The whole thing is an exercise in sophistry designed to prove to himself and other believers that he is right. Epic fail.

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FAIL

Oh I see

"there's no justifiable reason why the law should guarantee the great, great grandchildren of an author an unearned source of income."

OK then, when you die you agree to forfeit all your assets. Property, bank accounts, car, all that, all of them will be given away. You will not be able to leave any of it to your children* Because there's no justifiable reason why your children, children's (etc) should get any benefit from them.

Yes ? That's OK with you ? Good.

*was that a troy or labour policy, I can't tell them apart any more.

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FAIL

Other Steve is the face of FAIL

You are wrong. The appreciation rate of tangible assets (and most types of tangible assets depreciate in reality) is tiny compared to the royalties produced by his back catalogue. It's the difference between leaving your kids a tree and a money tree!

You can't accuse anyone of not being nice in this sort of exchange. You don't give a toss about his children either, but you are USING them to make your point? That's dishonest and hypocritical. His children don't deserve to be treated any different than any other children.

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FAIL

Now we get to the heart ofthe matter

"It's the difference between leaving your kids a tree and a money tree!"

Ahh I see, so it IS pure jealousy then ? I thought so. If you had a money tree, you;d destroy it rather than give it to your hypothetical progeny ? Out of principle ? Thought not.

"You don't give a toss about his children either, but you are USING them to make your point? That's dishonest and hypocritical"

Actually, I was at school with his daughter (quite a while ago, hence the asterisk), which is why I used the term 'concrete example', so you'll have to think of a better straw man argument than that.

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Or maybe this Noddy chap...

...could release some new content that people want to pay for.

I'm not able to keep living off the proceeds of last year's computer deployments. I have to go out and deploy more if I want to keep getting paid.

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FAIL

Stevie Wonder of FAIL is back

"Ahh I see, so it IS pure jealousy then ?"

How shallow ye be. Money trees should NOT exist, because they are a drain on society -- the REAL freetards are people who make money for nothing (i.e. money which is finite and has real value), not people who copy files with zero real value on the internet.

"Actually, I was at school with his daughter (quite a while ago, hence the asterisk), which is why I used the term 'concrete example', so you'll have to think of a better straw man argument than that."

I'm sure her daddy left her a small fortune besides the money tree.

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(Written by Reg staff)

Spite Inc.

You're really proving that "motivated by spite" point for me.

I hadn't thought of "jealousy", though. I'll put it in the next article - with a credit, of course.

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Boffin

The economics of culture

Having a society with copyright requires some economic activity be diverted to ensuring that copyright is effective. Therefore the more copies of copyrighted work the more effort it will be to be effective. Therefore the efficiency of that process would likely be increased by reducing the amount of work under copyright and reduce the cost of copyright on society.

It is only proper for there to be a balance because at some point the cost of society of enforcing copyright for a particular work will be greater than the value it has provided to society.

In other words copyright is not free for society so it shouldn't be for the copyright holder either - they pay the cost by having their copyright expire.

It's that simple. The complex bit is in trying to calculate a fair value.

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Flame

OK, here's a comparison

I am a Web developer, which makes me a content creator - I create websites. Now, by the reasoning of the copyright pigs here: I create you a website. I expect you to pay me a royalty every time someone visits that website. For the rest of my life. If it's a big website and you get millions of visitors a day, I don't ever have to work again. Not only that, but you have to continue paying my nieces and nephew (since I have no children of my own they inherit my assets), their children, and THEIR children, for 70 years after I'm dead. So not only do I never have to work again, but my nieces/nephew and their children and grandchildren never need to do an honest day's work in their lives, because their uncle designed a website 100 years earlier.

Can you, honestly, not see the greed and parasitism inherent in this? Are you so blinded by your own gluttony that you actually consider it reasonable that your descendants for at least the next three generations don't need to work at all? Would you really be willing to pay the architect who designed your house every time you invited someone else inside? Or the engineer who designed your car every time you start it? No, I don't think so, and so by NOT lobbying for Web developers, architects and vehicle engineers to be paid over and over again for a century you show us your true hypocrisy.

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Badgers

@ Steve Roper

You sound very angry.

It's not such a big deal.

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FAIL

Web Designer != Roxy Music. Shock!

"Can you, honestly, not see the greed and parasitism inherent in this? "

No. Perhaps I could, and I make this point one more time if you forced people to pay you for your website in that way.

As a lowly web designer, the market places a low value on the content that you create. Your licensing deals with your clients will reflect that, and indeed your business acumen.

The market places a higher value on other types of content, and I make this point one more time, get over it. No one is extorting people, no one is forced to consume.

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Free clue inside

"Here is some news for you"

No, here's some for you, I live with a writer and I personally contributed some large chunks of work to a book a couple of years back.

So at this point, I think you need to stop imagining that you know anything at all about publishing royalties.

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o rly

"The market places a higher value on other types of content, and I make this point one more time, get over it. No one is extorting people, no one is forced to consume."

IT DOESN'T. The market obviously wants the price of ALL easily copyable content to be Very Low If Not Zero. Consumers are extorted, by making unchecked copying illegal and giving a small number of "rights holders" a monopoly.

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y rly

"IT DOESN'T. The market obviously wants the price of ALL easily copyable content to be Very Low If Not Zero."

If the market felt that way, that's the way it would be. It isn't.

"Consumers are extorted"

Or perhaps they just want stuff and are prepared to pay for it. If that were not so, the market price would fall and the "extortionists" would be shit out of luck wouldn't they ?

"by making unchecked copying illegal and giving a small number of "rights holders" a monopoly."

A monopoly on what ? The right to charge what the market will bear for things that they own the rights to. And I'm still not clear, who are this "small number of rights holders" we keep hearing so much about ? Name them.

Let's take the example of a web designer above shall we ? If he creates some original content he automatically has the same rights as any other creator. He owns the copyright to his work under exactly the same terms as this shadowy conspiracy of rights holding extortionists you seem to be so frit of. And yet it seems that a web designer is not able to derive the same value from his output, even should he desire to do so, which in fairness our example above does not.

So what is the essential difference ? Between a web designer's work other sorts of content that allows those who create other sorts of content to 'extort' money from people while our poor downtrodden web designer must slave another day in the dark satanic PHP mills of oppressionville ?

None. None at all. Zip. Zilch. It's almost as though there were some kind of magic afoot, some kind of invisible hand at work.

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FAIL

simple:

"If the market felt that way, that's the way it would be. It isn't."

If internet pirates are not part of the market, then you would be right.

"Or perhaps they just want stuff and are prepared to pay for it. If that were not so, the market price would fall and the "extortionists" would be shit out of luck wouldn't they ?"

Or perhaps they don't have a choice? Perhaps the prices are artificially inflated as intangible goods don't abide by the laws of scarcity or supply and demand?

"A monopoly on what ?"

On distribution of infinitely copyable material.

"And I'm still not clear, who are this "small number of rights holders" we keep hearing so much about ? Name them."

You, for one.

"So what is the essential difference ?"

The website is already on the internet and most probably uses an ad-funded business model -- anyone can access it by just typing a url in. Sure, someone can steal the website's design, but that's plagiarism, not just copyright infringement. Capeche?

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FAIL

Seek help

"If internet pirates are not part of the market, then you would be right."

They're not, because they are not participating in it at all. Which is why I am right.

"Or perhaps they don't have a choice?"

Except that they do have a choice. The men with guns forcing people to shop in HMV are a figment of your delusion. And once again, please make some attempt to understand economic theory before cutting pasting bits of it from slashdot ...

"On distribution of infinitely copyable material."

... without even bothering to read any of it.

"You, for one."

Hook line and sinker there, I'm afraid. You hold exactly the same rights as I do over anything you create. You still fail to get this point, and until you do all your arguments will be pure fail.

"The website is already on the internet and most probably uses an ad-funded business model -- anyone can access it by just typing a url in. Sure, someone can steal the website's design, but that's plagiarism, not just copyright infringement. Capeche?"

None of that is at all relevant to the question that I asked you, so no, I don't 'Capeche' (sic), and why would our putative web designer not care about 'just' copyright infringement, it still impacts his opportunity to charge for his work. Or are you saying that it's OK to take it as long as you don't pretend that it's all your own work ? Did your English teacher tell you that ?

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Anonymous Coward

P2P still isn't legal...

Dear oh dear, you wouldn't be confusing the distribution method with the distribution contents would you?

P2P is perfectly legal. It all depends on what sort of files are being shared though.

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(Written by Reg staff)

Re: P2P still isn't legal...

I think we're talking about P2P music services. Labels would license their exclusive right to make copies of sound recordings.

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Hmmm

As long as we keep concentrating on the semantics of which *word* they use to describe copyright infringement over P2P networks, we won't actually progress anywhere in getting the real issue (fair use) discussed properly.

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Anonymous Coward

single issue all bad?

Every 4 or 5 years we get a new lot who have new ideas on EVERYTHING and want to change EVERYTHING in 4 / 5 years.

Why do i need the conservatives to have a policy on family?

Why do i need constant meddling in the way the country is run, wouldn't it be better to try and plan and run things for the longer term instead of this childish sniping between left and right in the house of yawns.

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Thumb Up

Someone has seen the light

Always nice to see something that goes agaist the will of the unwashed non-masses.

Freetards love to quote that its their human right to share files due to 'freedom of expression'. Its also in the UN's universal human righs that everyone is entitled to earn a fair wage and that they can protect their own artistic, literary and scientific works.

And if anyone says 'We'll just use Linux', lets not forget the big companies who fund a significant amount of Linux development.

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yes indeed

"Its also in the UN's universal human righs that everyone is entitled to earn a fair wage and that they can protect their own artistic, literary and scientific works."

And no-one is taking that away from them. It's just a proposal to take it from the current length of time, down to JUST 10 years. It's also interesting, the 'fair wage' bit. By some interpretations the current copyright laws could be argued that the encourage a non-fair wage. That is a wage far in excess of the work performed.

My gods, ONLY having 10 years to recoup, before having to work again to earn, how WILL they survive?

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Massive Green Eyes

"By some interpretations the current copyright laws could be argued that the encourage a non-fair wage."

By _your_ interpretation. And you've just given yourself away completely, you have literally just said "that's not fair!" I can even imagine you stamping your little feet to go with it.

"That is a wage far in excess of the work performed."

Some things that people create have more value than other things. Get over it.

If people are willing to continue to pay for a piece of IP - and look around you, they are - long after it was created, why complain ? Let the market take care of it. You seem to be suggesting that there should be some arbitrary cut off point, decided by you, where the value of something to the creator becomes zero simply because - in your opinion - they've made enough money by then and you don't think it is right for them to make any more.

If the value were truly zero, people would not part with their hard earned in exchange for it. No one forces them to. So there is already a solution for the problem you seem to think exists, except that it doesn't kick in, which rather suggests that the problem isn't there at all.

"My gods, ONLY having 10 years to recoup, before having to work again to earn, how WILL they survive?"

Sorry, I know you're all heartfelt and committed and everything, but what you've just posted reveals to me that your whole creed is, in fact, based on jealousy and (as Andrew noted) spite. It is the politics of envy, pure and simple. You yourself are unlikely to ever create anything that is of such value (and it is truly sad that you think this), so you don't see why anyone else should be able to either. Toys, pram, etc.

I'm glad you came and bothered to comment though, because prior to this, when I saw news about the Pirate Party I thought "Heh, cool, jokey, just a crazy bunch of porn downloaders having a laugh"

Now I know different. You are not in any way amusing. Not in the least. You are petty jealousy made flesh. There is not the icon to express how abhorrent I find you, so I'll stick with old faithful.

Epic Fail

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WTF?

..vs. society's Massive Black Balls

I don't see your point. It's clearly not jealousy, it's just that people are dissatisfied with the system and want it to change -- fairness is a reasonable thing to ask for. You obviously don't want that to happen because you make your money off copyrights and the system is massively skewed to favour you. You are basically afraid you might have to do an honest day's work in your life!

As perpetual copyrights fall apart (and you wouldn't be bitching all day long if they weren't), you can no longer pull an arbitrary price tag out of your ass and cram it down people's throats. The market price on content is getting much lower than you want it to be, so get used to it. That's the beauty of capitalism: you don't get to set the price, the market does.

It's only gluttonous individuals like you who have any motivation to argue that copyright law as it is can be an overall positive to society.

The Pirate Party is just your worst fear come true. They are actually asking to repair the loophole you've discovered to make money by doing the least amount of work at the expense of everyone else. What's more, there are millions of people who also agree that people like you are leeching off society... and they could vote against you.

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Oh, really, seriously epic

"You obviously don't want that to happen because you make your money off copyrights"

I make my money off software, consultancy and R&D. As it happens, I do own some valuable IP, and I'm not going to give it away to some grasping freetard like you just because you think it's not fair that I can earn more in an afternoon than you can in a week.

"You are basically afraid you might have to do an honest day's work in your life!"

Far from it my vociferous and multi failing freetard friend, I'm afraid (well, I'm not afraid, because your about as likely to get anyone with more than a couple of living brain cells to bang together to listen to your fallacious drivel as monkeys are to fly out of my butt) that some twat like you will come and take away the the value that I spend my time creating.

"As perpetual copyrights fall apart (and you wouldn't be bitching all day long if they weren't)"

Except that I don't think perpetual copyright is necessarily a good thing, but then you would know that if you'd actually bothered to engage with the arguments that have been put to you instead of just throwing your toys out of your pram and ranting about corporate greed mongering conspiracies and various other straw men as soon as you encounter anyone who disagrees with you.

"The market price on content is getting much lower than you want it to be, so get used to it. That's the beauty of capitalism: you don't get to set the price, the market does."

I don't know quite where you are copying and pasting your 'economics' from, but I'd suggest that you might tale the time to actually go and learn something about how it works, because the argument you make about markets setting the price is exactly right, and exactly why there is no need for you to go around reapportioning property rights, which is YOU setting the price to an arbitrary value of zero.

That's not the market, it's you.

"The Pirate Party is just your worst fear come true."

That actually made me laugh out loud. Truly.

"They are actually asking to repair the loophole you've discovered to make money by doing the least amount of work at the expense of everyone else."

Again, I have to point out that you seem to be mistaking me for some kind of serial blackmailer rather than a software developer.

"What's more, there are millions of people who also agree that people like you are leeching off society... and they could vote against you."

Dah Dah Daaaaah!!!! FFS, a) they can't vote 'against' me because I'm not standing in an election, b) they aren't going to be voting for some tiny minority single issue party that can't even explain itself without throwing a massive tantrum when someone disagrees with them.

PP may think itself to be very important, but in electoral terms you are effectively invisible.

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Heart

Excellent

Thanks for this article...you restored my faith in humanity (along with the other commentards here).

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Anonymous Coward

Missing the point

I think that El Reg may be missing the point on the appeal of this party to some groups, perhaps because this point is not made so well. I'm all for the Pirate party, but not because of music sharing, I never download music I always buy it. But from a small software developers point of view. Similar issues relate to copyright as to patents, they screw the viability of the small guy in favour of big companies that use legal process to destroy competition. As someone who doesn't pirate music I take great exception to the collection of a tax on the sale of all CD's (not in Britain but in several European companeis) and the distribution of this money to the music industry. Does any of this money go to the software industry who experienced pirating first? No.

For me this is personal, I owned a software company that some time after the digital millenium copyright was taken to court after a conflict and all my software was seized and hardware was seized. The courts was under the impression the software was owned by someone else. After more than a year in the courts and a vast sum of money on legal fees, all whilst earning no income as my assetts were frozen, the courts conceded that my company owned the software after all. However, my company was unable to operate for a year. This was in a European court btw. However, the courts often like compromise and made a ruling "Without prejudice" which mean that I either had to go on for some years more, or accept that I cannot sue for damages. So my company had been bankrupted, quite unjustly, with absolutely no recourse on the basis of untruths utilisating harsh copyright laws.

This is the future for small companies with the current trend that the music industry is pushing for. This may be all in the name of music, but the laws equally apply to software and the dangers through elimination via legal process still exists. If you are a software developer for whom the thought of a future on your own and not within some large corporation is appealing, then the law changes that are coming via music company lobbying are very threatening to your future existence.

I'll be voting the pirate party.

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Clue

"small guy in favour of big companies that use legal process to destroy competition."

Not really - let the small guy do the research and development - and then THEY can have the patents/copyrights whatever. They just need to get there first. The big companies put a lot of money into these things. They don't always work out - in fact more often than not they fail. There has to be a big payoff to shovel all of this money into R&D. You are benefiting from this expenditure. That nice fancy phone you have - or that computer you are typing on came from this culture.

Atlas.

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Clueless

He's talking about copyrights, you seem to be talking about patents! Are you seriously just replying to random comments, always with the same inane argument?

Also, since your business was never bankrupted like his was, you have NO RIGHT to criticise him.

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Silver badge
Pirate

Virtual Governance with CyberIntelAIgent Security Systems Software

If the likes of a Private and Pirate Party were to be an HyperRadioProActive Virtual Political Entity, with IT and InterNetworking Savvy could New and Better and Beta Ideas Shared reach Billions Easily for a Radical and Fundamental Change.

Which might lead to Panic and Horror and Change being Status Quo Resisted .......so that the Old Guard and Terror Gravy Train Rolls on? ........ over the Cliff?

Oh dear .... what a Shame. Did they not Heed and Think to Follow the New Posted AIdDirections ...... SMARTer Instructions?

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Unhappy

I'm amazed at the bile...

...against a party with three core policies:

- Reform copyright and patent law.

- End excessive surveillance.

- Ensure real freedom of speech.

Sounds just like the taliban or any other bogeyman you want to conjure up.

It would be quite nice if we lived in a functioning democracy where such issues could be discussed in an open and reasonable manner.

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(Written by Reg staff)

Re: I'm amazed at the bile...

As I wrote in the article, you can get to your goals in a way that means nobody gets poorer - or spied upon, or has their rights stripped.

On the other hand, if you create a belief system based on a bunch of prejudices, then advocate policy based on spite, then of course people will react.

Yet you seem surprised by this reaction. Failure of empathy?

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Spite?

My involvement with the Pirate Party is certainly not out of spite.

Drug patents kill people. Libel law protects those with money, rather than those who are wronged. Censorship is bad. Privacy is important. Creativity is good, cultural gatekeepers are not.

This is not spite, it's about forcing a discussion on important issues so we can come to a sensible conclusion about what's fair for everyone - creatives and consumers.

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FAIL

Drug patents don't kill people. Mustaches kill people.

Not having drug patents would kill more people. But then, you already know that, because it's not possible that you could regularly express this retarded opinion without having had someone beat you with a cluebat.

Nonetheless : Drug development costs money, big, big, big money. Without the ability to recover that investment and make profit, there would be no drug development. Therefore no drugs. Whoops - everybody's dead Dave.

Diseases kill people, poverty kills people. Drug patents save people. People who would otherwise have died because there was no cure for the disease they contracted.

Poor people die because they aren't rich enough to buy drugs.

Please don't have the temerity to suggest that drug development is getting cheaper and therefore drug patents are bad, because even assuming that to be true, the economics will be tilting toward providing drugs for poorer people, because they'd be cheaper.

Now if you were to say to me "Some people will die who needn't have done because some pharmaceutical companies are greedier than they could be" we could have a sensible conversation about it. If you were to say "people in third world countries have no access to expensive drugs because the kleptocrat dictators that we prop up use the entire GDP to buy their fat ugly wives shoes and that is really unjust", ditto.

Drug patents do not kill people. Diseases kill people. Fail ahoy, me hearty.

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Yes!

Exactly right. It's about having the debate, the discussion, going through the thought process and actually coming up with an idea of what is truly right and wrong. At the moment we've got to this stage without that debate, and if the Pirate Party encourages it then all credit to them.

Of course they won't get everything they want, and probably most them wouldn't want to anyway, but the entire point of aligning oneself with a political party is that it seems to be pulling in a rough direction that seems right.

Abolition of copyright? Will never happen. Nor should it. Preventing big business from restricting how you use the 'net? Much better.

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Given...

...the rhetoric of the average PP member (which appears to revolve around telling people they are wrong and stupid if they have even the smallest of grievances with PP policy), I doubt that they can engage in a sensible debate without falling back on fallacious arguments based on people dying because of X and big business is nasty because of Y and why shouldn't they Z because it isn't illegal and it's their human right to do so.

Their recent rally involved them...er...saying nothing and holding up placards with nothing on them. An idea cooked up in a fair trade coffee shop no doubt (there's a product which harms nobody!), while contemplating a cigarette made from natural leaves harvested by smiling and happy farmers in third world countries (another fantastic industry which benefits the poorest!).

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