On November 29, 2010, the Pirate Party of Canada made history by being the first Pirate Party outside of Europe to run a candidate in a federal election, namely Jeff Coleman in Winnipeg North. Running on a platform of strengthening dialogue with government and safeguarding leadership in the exchange of information, Coleman finished in 5th place, nearly edging out the Green Party candidate.
Canadians are starting to tire of politics as usual, getting tired of surrendering their rights with no one willing to stand up for them, and are open to new entrants to the political system that are willing to offer a compelling alternative. The Pirate Party has at its heart the goal of safeguarding the free flow of information while protecting individuals’ right to privacy. We have risen to defend these rights in the past, as we do now and will in the future, both within Parliament and without.
We look forward also to the next election, where we will work to further progress and to provide all Canadians, particularly those disenchanted with the current political system, with an opportunity to voice their discontent. There is of course always room for improvement, and we will be taking the strengths and weaknesses of our campaign in Winnipeg North to apply to our next election campaign, and to the one after that. The Pirate Party of Canada is here to stay.
Founded in 2009 and registered in 2010, the Pirate Party of Canada was established to protect the rights of consumers of information and culture against increasingly-draconian laws enacted in response to the demands of corporate interests. Specifically, the Party is committed to reform Canadian copyright laws, encourage innovation through patent reform, protect all Canadian citizens with strengthened privacy laws, and affirm their right to monitor their own government by promoting the ideals of open government.
Today, three men formerly involved in the operations of the file-sharing site The Pirate Bay were presented with prison sentences and multi-million-dollar fines by a Swedish Appeals Court. Despite shorter prison sentences than originally assigned, the damages are considerably higher, and will be awarded to music industry organizations for alleged harm caused.
This ruling hints at a dangerous prevailing legal sentiment in the international community, that one person can be held accountable for the wrongdoing of another. No copyright infringement is alleged on the part of the defendents, but rather the users of their site. If the site’s users break the law, any legal penalties should be incumbent on them alone.
As this sentiment grows within the old business model, it expands to ever more implausable lengths. First web hosts and applications were held liable, then peer-to-peer systems such as BitTorrent where no copyrighted material is stored on a server, and now search engines, indexers, and internet service providers have begun to be affected by increasingly-strict and unreasonable laws and enforcement.
Furthermore, the Pirate Party of Canada rejects the notion that the entertainment industry should be entitled to exorbitant damages for “facilitating” copyright infringement. Capitulating to these demands again and again serves only to encourage further predatory lawsuits against parties unable to defend themselves.
While it does not condone illegal activity, the Pirate Party stands firm in its belief that present copyright law is skewed in favour of big businesses scrambling to prop up their obsolete and unsustainable business models at the expense of consumers and content creators who would be better served by a more lenient law that enables collaboration and derivative works to flourish.
Founded in 2009 and registered in 2010, the Pirate Party of Canada was established to protect the rights of consumers of information and culture against increasingly-draconian laws enacted in response to the demands of corporate interests. Specifically, the Party is committed to reform Canadian copyright laws, encourage innovation through patent reform, protect all Canadian citizens with strengthened privacy laws, and affirm their right to monitor their own government by promoting the ideals of open government. It is currently running the first Pirate Party candidate outside of Europe in the Winnipeg North by-election to be held on November 29, 2010.
1) Do Canadians want an election now?
2) With the Speaker of the House ruling against the Government on “Contempt” charges should the P.M. resign and go to an election?
3) With the ruling from the Speaker against Minister Bev Oda should she be forced to resign?
4) Are you willing to support a new / fresh Federal Party?
Ask any Canadian to explain the loss of the hundreds of thousands of Canadian soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice during the wars of the last hundred years. Chances are that the response will be that they died fighting for our freedom. And they did: many fell for having the courage to stand up against those who threatened the freedom of our nation and the world, and we are all the less for their absence.
As we mourn the dead, we must also ask if we have the courage to follow their example. Tyranny is not the exclusive domain of would-be assailants from abroad. The most insidious threat to our freedoms is that which originates at home, and this every one of us has the ability and the responsibility to fight.
The Pirate Party of Canada has at its heart the protection of our fundamental freedoms, particularly the freedoms of speech, expression, and media. If you believe as we do, you are welcome to join with us in our fight. If not, we encourage you to stand up alone or with others to defend what you believe in against the inevitable onslaught of those who would compromise our freedoms for personal, political, or economic gain.
No one should respond to Remembrance Day with, “Whew, I’m glad all of that stuff is over.” The precious freedoms that we as citizens take for granted can always be taken away from us if we are not vigilant. Today we remember the sacrifices that have been made, but we must also remember the duties and responsibilities that remain. Every one of us as Canadians must always defend the Canada we are proud of against all those who would attack what it stands for, from without and from within.
Lest we forget.
Pirate Party of Canada
“The price good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by evil men.” —Plato