Friday, April 08, 2005

Faces of the Piracy Cult

Take a good long look. This is what the entertainment industry is up against: teenage Long John Silvers roaming the networks with the biggest grin. These particular self-acclaimed pirates are from Sweden. The photograph is an entry into a competition launched by the site Piratbyrån that asks "pirates" sent in photographs of themselves in pirates' clothes. To make it all the more easy they refer to the site's "piratshoppen", where young models show off shirts with the Piratbyrån logo.

Yeh, piracy is cool, sexy and very fashionable. Piracy is a life style, and these teenage kids are getting their kicks and living it out. The piracy cult is mainstream culture and surfacing under the repressive enforcement of copyrights. Well, that is the picture you might (literally) get from this stylish piracy propaganda.

In light of the recent "piracy" crack down Piratbyrån has also asked its readers to boycott the companies behind the anti-piracy organisation Antipiratbyrån and the IFPI: Don't Buy DVDs *Don't Rent Movies*No Cinema, is my crude translation of the call at the site [Swedish]. Seems a bit strange, to call kids to boycott content they hardly bought in the first place, true pirates as they are. The Bojkott logo and some more Colgate teethed pirates:

So, are these the new rebels without a cause? Rebels, yeh. No cause, nah. They've been branded pirates by the industry and now they live up to its high expectations, tasting the fruits of freedom that the internet brings them. You might just wonder to what extent the free in freedom means gratis to them. If the industry's accusations of pillaging are cultivated, and this cultivation becomes culture, what then happens to the fight for true user rights?
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Related: Swedish Anti-Piracy Organisation and ISP Shae Hands


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