The Party of Open: Open Government, Open Culture, Open Innovation & People First

Monthly archive: January 2012

Mass. Pirate Party Condemns Shutdown of Megaupload

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Despite overwhelming, worldwide public opposition to the current trends in ever-tightening and ever more intrusive copyright laws and copyright enforcement, the Department of Justice has seized and shutdown Megaupload, a popular online service that is not based in the United States. To make matters worse, New Zealand authorities have arrested 4 members of the Megaupload team due to pressure from the US Department of Justice and a sealed indictment handed down by a Virginia grand jury. None of the accused individuals are residents of the United States. Megaupload is a Hong Kong based web service with servers in numerous countries, allowing users to store and share their files online in a file storage locker. Like other cloud computing sites, Megaupload provides an easy way for users to back up and/or transfer files through a remote server. Prior to the seizure, the American entertainment industry has accused Megaupload of being a “pirate” site, based on users ability to transit files to one another through the Megaupload service. A number of major recording artists including Kanye West, Snoop Dogg, and Alicia Keys recorded a video performing the “The Mega Song”, in which they sang about their support for Megaupload based on its ease of use and its potential to aid in the distribution of music to the public. The Mega Song was uploaded to YouTube with the artists’ consent. Universal Music Group (UMG), the largest record company in the world, demanded repeatedly that YouTube remove the video. The justification for such removal is unclear. When UMG refused to reverse its demands or give an apology, Megaupload filed suit against UMG in the US District Court for the Northern District of California. Before the case was heard, it appears that pressure from the entertainment industry resulted in Megaupload being seized and shutdown by … Read more

published under Censorship, Copyright, Freedom of Speech | Comments Off on Mass. Pirate Party Condemns Shutdown of Megaupload

SOPA & PIPA: The Internet Goes On Strike, Pirates Join

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[From the Florida Pirate Party, but it includes our sentiments as well since this site will go black on the 18th.] On January 18, many websites will voluntarily go on strike [1] to demonstrate against the threat of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and PROTECT-IP Act (PIPA) bills, pending US legislation that would restrict freedom of speech, negatively impact economies, and degrade internet security. Participation in the strike has been confirmed by Wikipedia [2], Reddit, Mozilla, and Free Software Foundation, among others. Many organizations, including Google, Facebook, and Twitter, have expressed grave concerns over the bills [3]. Regardless of whether its purpose is legitimate or whether it will work; the legislation is not compatible with democratic values. It promotes censorship by giving the US Government and corporations the power to block access to – and take down – websites that they consider to be infringing on their copyright monopoly, including search engines or blogs which link to such sites. This would be done by ordering Internet Service Providers to censor access to the Internet and by cutting funds to the infringing websites by forcing the advertisers and payment services to cancel their accounts [4]. These laws would make social networks, search engines, and all websites providing space for discussion and information exchange impossible to run without massive surveillance of all users and the censorship of everything they publish. A link placed by a user in the comment section of an article in a regular Internet magazine could result in the magazine going bankrupt and the owners being charged with a crime. This would not only cripple innovation and entrepreneurship, it would be a flagrant violation of the fundamental human right to free speech. The bill’s supporters refuse to acknowledge the anti-democratic aspects of the bill as a problem; instead … Read more

published under Censorship, Freedom of Speech | Comments Off on SOPA & PIPA: The Internet Goes On Strike, Pirates Join

IRC meetings moving to Tuesdays at noon

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We are moving the IRC meetings to Tuesdays at noon starting tomorrow, the 18th, SOPA Blackout Day.  Talk with you then!

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IRC meeting moving to Thursday this week

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We are moving the IRC meeting to this Thursday, January 5th.  It will still be at 9:30pm.  Talk with you then!

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A Treat on New Years: Video of Gregory Engel’s Talk

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A treat for New Years 2012!  Erik Zoltan posted the video we took of Gregory Engel’s talk at Tufts University. Mr. Engels is the German Pirate Party’s International Coordinator, parliamentary group leader on the Offenbach am Main city council and founding co-chairman of the Pirate Parties International.  He talked about the German Pirate Party, its issues and strategy and the tools they use to facilitate democratic decision making.

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Further information

Help Build the Pirate Party

Help organize a local Pirate chapter

IRC Meetings Tuesday Night

The Mass. Pirate Party weekly chat is every Tuesday at 9pm, Eastern time. To get on:

  1. Go to
  2. Fill out the web form with the Nickname of your choice and enter #masspirates in the Channel box next to it, then click the Connect button
  3. Start typing and reading

You can also connect via your IRC client at one of the servers listed at

Contact us

call / txt: (617) 863-6277 (MAPP)

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