Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 11th Apr 2012 07:35 UTC
In the News "Germany's upstart Pirate Party has overtaken the Greens to become the third strongest political grouping in the country, according to a new poll. The survey by Forsa for broadcaster RTL showed support for the Pirates, whose platform is based on internet freedom and more direct participation in politics, pushing up to 13 percent and outstripping the Greens for the first time." Not surprising. I have lots of close friends in Germany (especially in the former DDR), and for obvious reasons, I've noticed they tend to have a very firm grasp of concepts like privacy and government spying. The bit about six parties being a lot and troublesome for coalition building made me smile.
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Comment by YEPHENAS
by YEPHENAS on Wed 11th Apr 2012 07:57 UTC
YEPHENAS
Member since:
2008-07-14

The tax cut / free market / lobbyist party FDP probably won't be in the parliament after the next elections failing the 5% threshold. So there will be only 5 parties again.

Reply Score: 1

What's in a name
by Soulbender on Wed 11th Apr 2012 09:18 UTC
Soulbender
Member since:
2005-08-18

Every time I see news about these "pirate" parties I keep thinking that using the word "pirate" in the name is not that good an idea.
Sure, we all know pirates (the swashbuckling kind) are cool but I'm pretty sure that's not the associating most people will make.

Reply Score: 6

RE: What's in a name
by Laurence on Wed 11th Apr 2012 09:29 UTC in reply to "What's in a name"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

Every time I see news about these "pirate" parties I keep thinking that using the word "pirate" in the name is not that good an idea.
Sure, we all know pirates (the swashbuckling kind) are cool but I'm pretty sure that's not the associating most people will make.

I've certainly (shamefully) never taken them seriously because of the name and they should be exactly the kind of party I'd advocate given what's been summarised here.

If I (a great believer in freedom of speech, privacy, an open internet and transparent government) have ignored this party because of the name, then I can only imagine how many other potential voters have been turned off too.

A great shame as scoring votes is a hard enough challenge already - and expensive too!! - without having to create additional hurdles for yourself.

Reply Score: 2

RE: What's in a name
by reez on Wed 11th Apr 2012 09:36 UTC in reply to "What's in a name"
reez Member since:
2006-06-28

Every time I see news about these "pirate" parties I keep thinking that using the word "pirate" in the name is not that good an idea.
Sure, we all know pirates (the swashbuckling kind) are cool but I'm pretty sure that's not the associating most people will make.

I agree, but I love the fact that names seem to become less important. It has always been one of the biggest flaws. Everyone associates different things with them and they are nothing more like a historical thing that has nearly nothing to do with reality.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: What's in a name
by Doc Pain on Wed 11th Apr 2012 10:38 UTC in reply to "RE: What's in a name"
Doc Pain Member since:
2006-10-08

"Every time I see news about these "pirate" parties I keep thinking that using the word "pirate" in the name is not that good an idea.
Sure, we all know pirates (the swashbuckling kind) are cool but I'm pretty sure that's not the associating most people will make.

I agree, but I love the fact that names seem to become less important.
"

For german political parties, the names never really related to what they do. Letting people work for less money than unemployed get isn't christian. Acting against the will of the majority of the people isn't democratic. Letting employers in trouble vanish so they need to "set free" their employees, but artificially keeping greedy and unresponsible banks on life support from taxpayers' money isn't social. Opening the way for weapons exports to countries (that later surprisingly appear as "villain states" with "undemocratic regimes") isn't green.

There's nothing in the names. But if there is something in it, it's the opposite.

It has always been one of the biggest flaws.


It belongs to the play "democracy" which we can see for many decades. There are rules on how to play it. Showing some "diversity" and "disagreement" is important to keep the spectators on their places. When they sit and watch, they don't act, and that's good. Names belong to that rules. They say nothing.

Everyone associates different things with them and they are nothing more like a historical thing that has nearly nothing to do with reality.


Correct. When parties did identify theirselves in the part as "mass party" or "workers' party", it was because that has been their target audience - the people for who's rights they wanted to fight. Today, the target audience has changed, but the name has been kept. Nobody would like to vote for a "bankers' party" or "tax criminal party".

Reply Score: 5

RE: What's in a name
by cyrilleberger on Wed 11th Apr 2012 10:13 UTC in reply to "What's in a name"
cyrilleberger Member since:
2006-02-01

Considering their stance on "copyright" and intellectual property in general, the term "pirate" is a well fitted word. While I agree about some of their points (the length of copyright protection and patents on drugs/software), I think they are taking things a bit too extreme:

* "Non-commercial use should be free from day one." how would anyone be able to makes any kind of money from their artistic work ? Except some musicians, from concert. I am all for limiting copyright length to something like 5 to 10 years, but during that time, you should not be able to exchange the copyrighted piece over p2p. Otherwise, you release an ebook, then someone buys it, put it on his non-commercial website, or non-commercial peer, and everybody goes for it. (or you would have to sell your book for 120000€, since you would sell only one). There are two cases where you could still make a profit, some music group are very good in concert, most just sucks at it but are still able to produce good music, and would deserve to get paid for it. This could work to some extent for movies. I am also fascinated by the number of open source people who like and vote for the pirate party, while their copyright ideas would destroy things like the GPL (companies would find loop hole in the non-commercial thingy for shipping closed source modification of GPL with hardware, arguing they sell hardware which happen to contain non-commercial software).
* as for the patents, I agree with them that software patent should be banned (they duplicate copyright, but then they have suppressed copyright...), and drug patent replaced by public research funded by tax on drug (mostly because commercial companies promote research on drugs that will give them the most profit and not the most benefit for the health of the population, not blaming companies, they are designed for making profit) but patents should stay for manufactured product "merely pointless (patents in the mature manufacturing industries)"... right... it smells the "I don't know anything about industry and still talk about it...", without patents how companies like ARM would manage to sell license and keep developing their CPUs ? I am assuming they consider patents to be useless for traditional industries such as clothing industry, which is again wrong, why would a company invest in research on a new type of textile (for properties like easier to cleaner, warmer, better for the environment...) if they could not protect their invention. Patents are still very good for the manufacturing industry, and should stay.

Quoted from http://www.piratpartiet.se/international/english


That said, a raise of the Pirate Party is good for putting pressure on the government to look into the issues related to IP and Privacy, and possibly come up with more reasonable policies than the existing ones and the pirate party ones.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: What's in a name
by Sandlord on Wed 11th Apr 2012 21:11 UTC in reply to "RE: What's in a name"
Sandlord Member since:
2006-07-12

Considering their stance on "copyright" and intellectual property in general, the term "pirate" is a well fitted word. While I agree about some of their points (the length of copyright protection and patents on drugs/software), I think they are taking things a bit too extreme:

[snip]

Quoted from http://www.piratpartiet.se/international/english


That said, a raise of the Pirate Party is good for putting pressure on the government to look into the issues related to IP and Privacy, and possibly come up with more reasonable policies than the existing ones and the pirate party ones.


There is a big difference on that topic between the swedish and the german pirate party.
The german pirate party wants that the artists earn most of the money, not the ones who distribute the work like it is now. There is no mention about legalizing "pirating" of music.

Reply Score: 3

RE: What's in a name
by Neolander on Thu 12th Apr 2012 06:49 UTC in reply to "What's in a name"
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

They probably should take inspiration from Nick Park's latest film posters. I still wouldn't vote for them (AFAIK I can't, they are not a recognized party here yet), but THAT would bring some fun in the middle of all these dull election posters.

Reply Score: 1

Another Weimar?
by p-OS on Wed 11th Apr 2012 09:58 UTC
p-OS
Member since:
2006-01-19

Cause of the experiences in the Weimarer Republic the 5% threshold was introduced to make it easier to form coalitions for government.
According to Forsa the FDP will not be in the next federal parliament, according to other surveys however they might get over the 5% threshold. So despite having a threshold there might be up to 7 parties in the parliament after the next federal elections in 2013.
That makes forming a government really difficult.
Nonetheless an exciting development.
We will see.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Another Weimar?
by kaiwai on Wed 11th Apr 2012 10:07 UTC in reply to "Another Weimar?"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

Cause of the experiences in the Weimarer Republic the 5% threshold was introduced to make it easier to form coalitions for government.
According to Forsa the FDP will not be in the next federal parliament, according to other surveys however they might get over the 5% threshold. So despite having a threshold there might be up to 7 parties in the parliament after the next federal elections in 2013.
That makes forming a government really difficult.
Nonetheless an exciting development.
We will see.


The drop in support for the FDP has been something repeated around the world - ACT Party, the NZ equivalent of the FDP (we have MMP in NZ too) has been declining for quite some time in part due to the shift in the publics view of their policies and equally due to the infighting.

Reply Score: 4

Made me smile
by _Wannes_ on Wed 11th Apr 2012 13:59 UTC
_Wannes_
Member since:
2010-12-29

"The bit about six parties being a lot and troublesome for coalition building made me smile."

Well, just across the south border, there is a country called Belgium, and we sure know what coalition building means ;)

Reply Score: 1