Pirate Party pursues political plunder

The success of Germany's Pirate Party in the Berlin elections will help legitimise the movement, a member of Australia's Pirate Party says

The Berlin electoral success of the German Pirate Party will help legitimise the movement internationally and prove that it is no joke, according to Australian Pirate Party deputy secretary, David Campbell.

Die Piratenpartei has won 8.9 per cent of the popular vote, equating to 14 or 15 seats depending on how the numbers fall. Campbell said that the results came on the back of five years of work by the Berlin pirates and indicated that the party's message represents concerns held by the population that are neglected or opposed by traditional parties.

“It lends a little bit more legitimacy and sort of breaks us into a real parliament and shows we’re actually on track and getting somewhere, we’re not just a joke party,” Campbell said.

"Heavy handed tactics" employed against people accused of copyright infringement in European countries helped fuel the vote, Campbell said.

“I guess the world is also slowly waking up to the fact big media only have a copyright monopoly on music and videos because we gave it to them and originally that was established to protect music but as we can see with online distribution being as close to zero dollars spent, it’s free distribution these days so the big media companies are no longer required.

“I think it’ll give us more clout in the public view [and show] that we’re not just a joke, we’re here to stay, we have important issues to tackle and we need your support.”

The victory will have a positive effect on the Pirate Party movement around the world, Campbell said, by increasing its legitimacy.

“There’s that fear in the media that putting your hand up and saying you’re a pirate will land consequences on you and I think the more legitimate the party seems the more chance we have that people will be honest and stand with us shoulder to shoulder.

“I think there’s just a general atmosphere that people are sick of the lack of transparency in government and that’s another policy that we’re fighting for: We want transparency in government and we want to reform the copyright laws which make information and culture entirely free and improved.”

Follow Chloe Herrick on Twitter: @chloe_CW

Follow Computerworld Australia on Twitter: @ComputerworldAU

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