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Thursday, June 7, 2012

Piracy Religion Crossed into America

21st century has shown a few cargo cults whose believers were people looking for god in the form of technology. On top of them you will find Apple, with its worship of Steve Jobs and its swirling queues around sacred places of worship (apparently, Apple stores).

Nevertheless, a new religion is now rising up to challenge Apple in its own latte belt. The talk is about the Swedish “online piracy religion”, which is now seeking official recognition in America. Calling itself “Kopimism”, the religion says that any act of copying data is sacred and therefore can’t be limited by any human legislation.

It was introduced back in 2010 to a 19-year-old philosophy student named Isak Gerson. Unlike other religions that have crucifixes, Kopimism holds Ctrl+C and Ctrl+V as sacred symbols. As for the name of the religion, it was inspired from a mistranslation of 1 Corinthians 11:1, “Copy me, my brothers, just as I copy Christ himself”. Actually, the original verse really says “follow me” instead of “copy me”, but it seems that Koptics haven’t read the rival religion’s texts.

Meanwhile, Kopimism has already set branches in eighteen counties, and has recently been registered in Illinois, USA. The American branch of the church is now doing its best to get federal recognition and tax status.

This may appear a bit tricky, provided that the United States is considered by many the home of the Great Satan of Kopism – pro-copyright industry. Entertainment industry is the key persecutor of all pirates, and the religion believes that if it had its way, all pirates would have been crucified in public places.

The American branch is led by Christopher Carmean, a student at the University of Chicago. He has told the local media that almost 500 people have already registered in his church, while 30 of them are already actively participating in congregations. Although there haven’t appeared to be any martyrdoms, it’s still early days yet.

Although the religions usually need a founder (most preferably if he or she dies while carrying his or her mission), and even Apple is still leading the pack on that one, Kopimism doesn’t have any.

In the European Union, the Pope is the biggest enemy of Kopism, claiming that this religion was a send up of religion, of copyright and of the government to register such an outfit as religious.

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