Sweden Formally Recognizes Piracy as Religion

The Swedish text in this image translates roughly to 'Internet is my distributed brain.'

The Swedish text in this image translates roughly to 'Internet is my distributed brain.'

The Missionary Church of Kopimism (pronounced Copy-Me-ism) is a legal religion with 3,000 members.

The act of peer to peer file-sharing is a holy act and information is sacred, according to the tenets of the Missionary Church of Kopimism. An offshoot of Sweden’s Pirate Party, the 3,000 members of the church have been attempting to be recognized as an official religion since 2010. After their third application, the Swedish government agency called Kammarkollegiet finally accepted Kopimism as a formal religion when the organization outlined how members pray and conduct services. Despite the ruling, file-sharing of copyright protected creative works is still illegal in Sweden.

“Being recognized by the state of Sweden is a large step for all of Kopimi. Hopefully, this is one step towards the day when we can live out our faith without fear of persecution,” said Isak Gerson, spiritual leader of the Church of Kopimism.

“Since Kammarkollegiet has been strict with formalities, we had to apply three times,” said Gustav Nipe, a leader in teh Church. “I think it might have something to do with the governmental organisations abiding by a very copyright friendly attitude, with a twisted view on copying.”

If you’re interested in joining the Church of Kopimism, you’re in luck because there is no formal initiation or anything. All you have to do is join the members for a “kopyacting” or religious service “where the kopimists share information through copying and remix.”

Since the announcement, the Kopimism website has been down due to excessive traffic but the organizers urge you to come back once “the storm has settled.”

Source: Kopimistsamfundet

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