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AEPOC alarmed over understanding of piracy

July 20, 2009

During the recent board meeting of AEPOC, Europe's Anti-piracy association for the protection of encrypted works and services, AEPOC discussed the "Pirate Bay" sentence in Sweden and the election of the "Pirate Party" into the European Parliament. AEPOC views the "success" of the Pirate Party, which questions the concept of intellectual property and copyright, and calls for the general removal of patent protections, as a strong alarm signal. "This should act as a wake-up call for national governments and the European Commission to take a clear position on piracy matters", said AEPOC's President Jean Grenier.

The vote for the Pirate Party follows the closure of "The Pirate Bay" filesharing website by a Swedish court in April this year ˆ an outcome that upset users and resulted in their sympathetic votes being cast on this single issue in the European elections.

AEPOC President Jean Grenier summarised the association's position: "Piracy is not a sport, it remains a theft. The election of the Pirate Party shows there is confusion among voters on this matter. The internet must not be a lawless territory that excuses or condones crime, be it theft, counterfeiting or child abuse." Grenier continued: "This is particularly relevant with regard to the younger members of our society who are susceptible to the message of the Pirate Party, a message which appears romantic, yet is criminal at its core."

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