Pirate Party Posts Manifesto Online

The Pirate Party's manifesto includes altering the "hopelessly out of date copyright law" to come up with a "fair and balanced" copyright law that is suitable for the 21st Century. The party says that although artists should be the only people making money for their work, there also needs to be a fair use policy for the public. "We will legalise use of copyright works where no money changes hands, which will give the public new rights," the manifesto promises. These new rights include:

A new right to format shift (for example, buy a CD then copy it to an iPod - which is currently illegal);A new right to time shift (record a TV programme for watching later) andA new right to share files (which provides free advertising that is essential for less-well-known artists).

Though it sounds like the Pirate Party is all for file sharing, the manifesto stipulates that counterfeiting, and profiting directly from other people's work without paying them, will remain illegal.

Copyright and file sharing aside, another big issue the Party wants to take on is the people's privacy. The Party wants forbid third parties from intercepting or monitoring your activity online unless they have a specific, court-issued warrant.

"We believe privacy of the individual should be upheld at all times. We feel citizens should have the right to private and confidential communication; and therefore we will forbid third parties from intercepting or monitoring communication traffic (i.e. telephone calls, post, internet traffic, emails), and require specific warrants to be issued by a court before the police are allowed to monitor traffic. We will give the public a new right to encrypt their private data."

The Party also wants to introduce stronger data protection laws and the right to apply for compensation if you have been affected by government data loss.

As far as freedom of speech goes, the Pirate Party says it plans to legislate in favour of net neutrality and pledges to prevent government censorship of the Web for anything other than the extreme (like state secrets and child abuse).

The manifesto also promises cheaper Internet service by having customers only pay for the connection they get, instead of the max speed they are promised.

"We will solve the problem of false and misleading advertising of internet speeds by giving customers a new right to pay only for the fraction of the claimed broadband speed that the provider actually delivers, so if you sign up for an 8Mb/s connection and only receive 2Mb/s, you would only have to pay a quarter of the agreed price."

The rest of the document promises rights for whistle blowers; better computing education in schools; rights for photographers and filmmakers to go about their business without persecution under anti-terror laws; not using libel law to smother free speech; encouraging libraries and museums to digitize their content and "a new right for disabled people to demand an unrestricted version of DRM protected content where that is necessary to allow them to access it."

Check out the full manifesto here.

  • SAL-e
    If I was UK citizen they have my vote! :)
  • gamerjames
    Looks like they have some good ideas.

    P.S. Loving the alliteration ;D
  • JMcEntegart
    gamerjamesLooks like they have some good ideas.P.S. Loving the alliteration ;D
    You noticed!
  • kyeana
    I first thought this was going to be something completely outrageous, but they actually make some good well thought points without being over the top.
  • techd2
    I'll move to the UK and give them my vote. :)
  • Hilarion
    I like this... a LOT!

    I thought I was going to find something insane but instead have found something resembling sanity instead.

    Wish I could vote for 'em...
  • HalJordan
    Next up...EU declares that MS provide a torrent downloader selection screen, that is after you navigate past the "selection screen" selection screen.
  • thegreathuntingdolphin
    I like the vast majority of their manifesto, especially format shifting, protection from intrusion, and paying for internet speeds you actually receive. However, I am not a huge fan of the "right" to share files. The biggest problem with piracy is not people counterfeiting or profiting off of the original artist; it is the artist losing money because people are sharing it for free. Giving people "The right to share files provided no money changes hands" is crazy. Seriously, who would actually buy any music, games, or movies if you had the right to share it for free? Yes, many up and coming artists might need to be shared, but I feel like that is up to the artist, not us. It isn't illegal to share something if the artist lets people do it...

    Overall a pretty cool job they are doing. I love all the patent changes they propose - it's about time! Now if we can get this started in the USA...
  • If they had picked a more sensible name like the "fair use party" they could have got a lot more votes from many people who are just sick of the DRM Nazis. But with an inflammatory name like the Pirate Party they'll be regarded as an irrelevant joke.
  • rtfm
    I'm going to pirate their logo :p