Yo ho ho! Pirate Party in Berlin parliament, for the first time



Berlin, Germany: the new sanctuary and Mecca for international software pirates?

I seriously expected this to be about people who supported the notion of piracy on the high seas, focusing specifically on swilling grog and collecting booty.

I am disappointed.

In good part reaction to the EU’s latest copyright extension.

This is why I hate big fucking media. They keep driving young people to a political party which wants a (disastrous for creative media) personal copy exemption. When existing copyright law in particular is MORE than strict and long enough (shit, I’d be happy with 25 years).

In good part reaction to the EU’s latest copyright extension.

No, not really. And I’m not guessing here because, well, I live in Berlin. The Pirate Party basically mostly tried to avoid IT- or copyright-related topicy in their election campaign since they’re clearly worried about being perceived as a one-issue mobile. Their campaign program tried to cover lots of bases, and none of them was really about copyright or downloads. (You can see the campaign posters here and a program overview here.)

You should rewrite the title (you can’t) to: German Hipsters Win Election, Shocking Non-Indie Media.

This section of their manifesto made me chuckle, because I’m pretty sure it doesn’t mean what the translator turned it into:

The PIRATES Berlin reject the prosecution of black drivers in accordance with § 265a of the Criminal Code. According to the Berlin Executive Committee (BVB) 60 percent of the custodial sanction sit in jail for driving black. This applies especially to the sick and socially underprivileged people: alcoholics, drug addicts and homeless people. The detention of these people is untenable.

From an economic perspective, the pursuit of black drivers for Berlin is harmful. An average loss of 23, - € are not dissolved by the process tickets and Inhaftierungskosten of about 6,000, - compared with € per case. Therefore be abolished only for economic reasons, the persecution of black drivers. We will enter the House of Representatives and the Federal Council for the Abolition of Penal Code § 265a. Civil claims against black drivers are unaffected.

I’m thinking “black driver” means something other than a black person who is driving a car.

Using public transport without a ticket.


Yeah, it’s not racial but since I’m not German I’m not going to go into detail since I’ll probably get it wrong.

I don’t think they get that the whole point is for the state to waste all sorts of resources on chasing down people who don’t pay so that other folks will see it and pay. You gotta have people paying into the transit system, it’s the only way to keep things fair.

Like, in NYC, I am a heavy public transit user. I, like all New Yorkers, subsidize it through my taxes because it’s assumed that everyone benefits from transit existing (and therefore reducing congestion on the streets). As someone actually using it, rather than benefiting indirectly, I also pay $100 a month for an unlimited pass (I need four swipes a day, at 3$ a swipe this is a huge savings). So I indirectly subsidize it through the tax code, and directly subsidize it on a usage basis. This is fair, and ensures that the burden is shared but falls more heavily on those benefiting the most.

If I wasn’t worried someone would hunt my ass down and fine me, you can bet I’d jump over the turnstyles and keep that hundred bucks in my pocket. It’s the needless waste on enforcement that keeps me continuing to pay.

Am I a moral person? Moral enough!

Yea, but what they’re saying is people shouldn’t get a criminal record for it. Which makes sense.

I’ve been sold the wrong ticket in the UK before by train companies, and despite the fact it was for the right amount, they fined me and nearly took me to criminal court because I had the temacity to complain about their incompetence. If it had been a civil court, I’d of pressed it since they were clearly at fault (but it’s not worth getting a criminal record over).

(To this day, ten years later, I take an extra 60 minutes on a otherwise 90 minute journey I do ~twice a month, on average to avoid paying that train line company a penny ever again - it’s also cheaper, so…)

JD - Sure, but that doesn’t mean a lot of young people didn’t do it for that reason anyway.

I think you mean “temerity.”

…tenacity. Also, I’m dyslexic. &blowme, if you’re complaining about my spelling. But don’t.

No you meant temerity, unless you complained on several occasions over a period of time.

No, I picked the word correctly, it took quite some time to get through the guy’s head that I was not refusing to pay the fine, I was just saying that both he and the person who sold me the ticket were incompetent.