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Thursday, June 7, 2012

EU Pirate Party Offered Copyright Platform

Christian Engstrom, the Pirate Party MEP, with its founder Rick Falkvinge, are trying to offer a better alternative to ACTA treaty by releasing The Case For Copyright Reform, which is a 107-page e-Book explaining the Party’s vision for reconciling copyright protection with online sharing.

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The International Pirate Party appeared in Sweden 6 years ago and has decided to take the bull by the horns, offering the clearest and detailed statement on the way their outfit is going to act on the problem of digital piracy.

First of all, their proposal highlighted that the growth of file-sharing can’t be stopped without monitoring private communication. This means that such strategy would violate basic human rights. The Pirate Party points out that they don’t want to abolish copyright. Albeit copyright management systems would be banned under their suggestion, copyright would still prevent people from making money on someone else’s works. Non-profit copying and use is suggested to be made absolutely legal. In order and to make things clear on the meaning of copyright, the Party agreed that Internet users could once copy a poem or a cassette and send it to friends without infringing the law.

Moreover, in order to clarify the boundaries for sharing, the Pirate Party offered setting explicit guidelines for legitimate audio and visual sampling, such as the kinds of established legitimate quotation rights for text. Copyright protection is suggested to be cut from 70 to 20 years since the time of publication. In addition, these copyrights should be renewed 5 years after publication in order to “allow orphaned works quick entry back into the public domain”.

The Party’s proposal also details on how current copyright legislation meddles with technological and creative progress, let alone the freedom of private communication and due process. They also offered evidence from Norway and Sweden to prove that musicians are still able to get revenue in a world where their works can be copied without restrictions, by shifting to other revenue sources.

The hopes are that this suggestion will help some German intellectuals change their minds, as they have reportedly turned against the online party recently.

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