Thursday, January 5th 2012

Church Of Kopimism: The New File Sharing Religion

Church Of Kopimism: The New File Sharing Religion (updated)

With file sharers all over the world being hunted by copyright holders and aided by the governments they lobby, there's now a new angle to this fight: file sharers turn their hobby into a religion. Since 2010, a group of self-confessed Swedish 'pirates' have tried to have their beliefs recognized as an official religion, but were denied several times. However, just before Christmas, they have finally succeeded in convincing the authorities that the Church Of Kopimism is a real, genuine bona fide religion. How they exactly achieved this isn’t clear, however. The Missionary Church of Kopimism was founded by philosophy student Isak Gerson, who is one of a large group of Swedes that believe file copying to be a sacred act. Gerson is ecstatic at this development and hopes more people will now feel able to come out as 'Kopimists'.

Gerson explained to TorrentFreak, "I think that more people will have the courage to step out as Kopimists. Maybe not in the public, but at least to their close ones. There’s still a legal stigma around copying for many. A lot of people still worry about going to jail when copying and remixing. I hope in the name of Kopimi that this will change."

Of course, although the church now has formal status, just as with any other religion, the laws of the land still override the religion's dogma, which means that copyright infringement is still not permitted. However, Gerson hopes that their beliefs will be considered when drafting future laws. However, he might have a long wait, because dollars talk louder than beliefs. What's especially surprising about this new religion though, are the number of members that belong to it. In just the last six months, their membership has swelled from 1000 to 3000 members, so it's reasonable to believe that this news will cause another surge in membership. Regardless of whether someone is a member or not (membership is free) Gerson urges everyone to keep right on file sharing: "We confessional Kopimists have not only depended on each other in this struggle, but on everyone who is copying information. To everyone with an internet connection: Keep copying. Maintain hardline Kopimi."

It remains to be seen how long this religion lasts, whether it spreads to other countries and how much effect this will have in drafting copy-friendly laws in Sweden and elsewhere.

The church has issued the following press release:

Just before Christmas, the Swedish governmental agency Kammarkollegiet registered the Church of Kopimism as a religious organisation. This means that Sweden is the first country to recognize kopimism as a religion.

The Church of Kopimism have tried to become registered as a religious organisation by Kammarkollegiet for more than a year.

- Since Kammarkollegiet has been strict with formalities, we had to apply three times, a happy Gustav Nipe - board chairman for the organisation - says. He continues, 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.

For the Church of Kopimism, information is holy and copying is a sacrament. Information holds a value, in itself and in what it contains, and the value multiplies through copying. Therefore, copying is central for the organisation and its members.

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, says Isak Gerson, spiritual leader of the Church of Kopimism.

The Church of Kopimism is a religious organisation with roots from 2010. The organisation formalizes a community that's been well spread for a long time already. The community of kopimi requires no formal membership. You just have to feel a calling to worship what is the holiest of the holiest, information and copy. To do this, we organize kopyactings - religious services - where the kopimists share information with eachother through copying and remix.

Copy and seed.


UPDATE

New Scientist now have an interesting interview with Isak Gerson about Kopimism.
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59 Comments on Church Of Kopimism: The New File Sharing Religion

#1
TheMailMan78
Big Member
This is why no one takes the pirating argument seriously. These guys are the NAMBLA of the internet.
Posted on Reply
#2
Widjaja
I'd like to see an official Church built in which followers go to. lol
Posted on Reply
#3
Steevo
Perhaps if they only shared at the "church" they wouldn't have the issues as who could prove it?
Posted on Reply
#4
TheMailMan78
Big Member
by: Widjaja
I'd like to see an official Church built in which followers go to. lol
They do. Its called prison.
Posted on Reply
#6
MGF Derp
Hey look a group doing illegal acts and then tying to hide behind religion...like thats never happened before.
Posted on Reply
#8
Widjaja
by: TheMailMan78
They do. Its called prison.
At the moment that's certainly officially where they would go.
Still not a church. :/
Posted on Reply
#9
Rule-R
by: Widjaja
At the moment that's certainly officially where they would go.
Still not a church. :/
In there they can have one, out here such a church would be perma raided by the SWAT or some..
Posted on Reply
#10
TheMailMan78
Big Member
by: Widjaja
At the moment that's certainly officially where they would go.
Still not a church. :/
Oh sure it is. When they get on their hands and knees to pray they get exactly what they deserve in prison. I think prison is holy ground for pirates. They should all go there once a year like Mecca.
Posted on Reply
#11
Novulux
What exactly makes it a "church". Is it a branch of Christianity?
The leader must be crazy or trying to use this as a smokescreen.
Posted on Reply
#12
Frick
Fishfaced Nincompoop
by: Novulux
What exactly makes it a "church". Is it a branch of Christianity?
The leader must be crazy or trying to use this as a smokescreen.
I don't think a church have to be christian.
Posted on Reply
#13
PremoGS
by: TheMailMan78
They do. Its called prison.
Trying to be funny or something?
Posted on Reply
#14
qubit
Overclocked quantum bit
by: Novulux
What exactly makes it a "church". Is it a branch of Christianity?
The leader must be crazy or trying to use this as a smokescreen.
by: Frick
I don't think a church have to be christian.
Anyone can start a church/religion and it can be about almost anything, too.

Welcome to TPU Novulux. :toast:
Posted on Reply
#15
devguy
by: qubit
Anyone can start a church/religion and it can be about almost anything, too.

Welcome to TPU Novulux. :toast:
Yup, look at the United Church of Apple. Although, that one seems to have hit a snag; their Messiah Steve Jobs didn't rise from the dead.
Posted on Reply
#16
qubit
Overclocked quantum bit
by: devguy
Yup, look at the United Church of Apple. Although, that one seems to have hit a snag; their Messiah Steve Jobs didn't rise from the dead.
Yeah, bit of a problem that, innit?

There's better ways to fight copyright corporatism than starting some pathetic religion. Namely, get funded and fight them the same way they fight you. It's not easy, that's for sure, but not impossible and organizations like the EFF and the Pirate Party are a start.
Posted on Reply
#18
Lazzer408
I'm a member of the TPU Church of Tech of Latter Day Geeks.
Posted on Reply
#19
TheMailMan78
Big Member
by: PremoGS
Trying to be funny or something?
Nope just stating the facts. Some pirates should go to prison. That way they could be with like minded people.
Posted on Reply
#20
Volkszorn88
by: Widjaja
I'd like to see an official Church built in which followers go to. lol
There's tons of them around. Just go to any IKEA store. Remember they're swedish.
Posted on Reply
#21
qubit
Overclocked quantum bit
by: Liquid Cool
If they get bored...

They can always check out Lady Gaga's new church.

The New 10 Commandments

LC
Oh FFS that's nuts. :wtf: I wonder how many other pop 'stars' have pulled something like this?
Posted on Reply
#22
Wrigleyvillain
PTFO or GTFO
by: TheMailMan78
Nope just stating the facts. Some pirates should go to prison. That way they could be with like minded people.
Makes sense to me.
Posted on Reply
#23
Saidrex
...more and more people goes crazy, another proof that internet eats away people brains
Posted on Reply
#24
Recus
Let any one of you who haven't downloaded anything be the first to throw a stone at me. : P
Posted on Reply
#25
largon
Lookit that...
Them religions are still being invented, these days.
Posted on Reply
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