Peter Brett's blog

Pirate Party Germany Server Raid - Open Letter

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In response to the raid on the German Pirate Party's servers on Friday 20th May, the following letter was delivered to the German ambassador to the UK this morning.

Excellency,

We are writing to you to express our concerns regarding the events of Friday the 20th May 2011.

As you will be well aware, German police officers seized a number of servers belonging to the Piratenpartei (The German Pirate Party), provided by AixIT in Offenbach. Some of these servers constituted the information technology and communications infrastructure of the party, a legal and officially recognised political party in Germany apparently at the behest of French investigators.

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Hargreaves and the Future of Pirate Policies

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As you may be already aware, today the Government published the long-awaited Hargreaves Review of Intellectual Property and Growth.  As we had made clear in our submission to the review, copyright and patents should 'make not break markets', and the rights of innovators and artists must be balanced with those of the public to enjoy such work.

Unfortunately the review has not presented the kinds of radical shifts and reforms that we hoped for. It deals with some of the peripheral issues — albeit fairly well, and in a way that we support — but it still leaves the core, vitally important and urgent problems we face unaddressed.

The report presents us with one of the many battlefields upon which we are likely to find ourselves fighting over the next few years.  This review may form the basis of future legislation, but it is quite likely that those points on which we agree with the review will face serious opposition from the deep pockets and powerful lobbyists of the traditional media and content industries.

Treasurer election results

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Voting on the election of a new Party Treasurer has now closed. Gavin Meredith received 52 votes (with 5 for reopening of nominations), and is duly elected (full results).
Hopefully he will post a blog later this week to introduce himself and lay out his immediate plans as our new Treasurer! 

Campaigns: looking back, looking forward

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Nominations for the role of Campaigns Officer are now open, and will close at midnight on 21st May 2011.

This time a year ago we were celebrating the first ever Pirate candidates in a UK general election.  In May 2010, we stood candidates in nine Westminster constituencies, and received an average of 0.4% of the vote.

Although many of us were disappointed that the numbers weren't higher, it provided a good benchmark to judge our success in future elections. Over the last year, there've been quite a few of them!

Everyone wants more CCTV, apparently

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On Tuesday 1st March, the Second Reading of the Protection of Freedoms Bill was debated in the House of Commons. As you may be aware, the Protection of Freedoms Bill introduces the requirement for a Code of Practice for CCTV installations, something that the Pirate Party has been demanding for some time.  Several MPs expressed the opinion that there was nothing wrong with CCTV, and far from demanding regulation, constituents were demanding more of it.

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