The issue of copyright law and infringement is a hot-button that often leads to a great divide between those for and against strict laws and penalties to control it. Now, a radical group in Sweden, whose members believe strongly in free sharing of information, has decided to start their own religion based upon that belief.
Isaac Gerson, a 19-year-old college student majoring in Philosophy, founded The Missionary Church of Kopimism in a movement to push back against government oppressors. Church members subscribe to the beliefs that “copying and the sharing of information is the best and most beautiful that is” and that “[having] your information copied is a token of appreciation that someone thinks you have done something good.”
They follow four postulates:
* All knowledge to all
* The search for knowledge is sacred
* The circulation of knowledge is sacred
* The act of copying is sacred
“We challenge all copyright believers – most of which have a great deal of influence in politics, and who derive their power by limiting people’s lives and freedom,” the group’s website states. “What they most of all want to limit the knowledge. We need to steel ourselves for their hatred and aggression.”
Of course, one cannot just simply begin a religion due to persecution and expect to be granted a safe harbor from oppressors.
“In late 2010 the church applied to the authorities to be accepted as an official religion,” explains a report by TorrentFreak. “That application was denied at the end of March on the basis that although the church is indeed a community, its meetings did not constitute ‘worship’. Undeterred, the church founders have requested a meeting to find out what is required in order to gain official acceptance.”
While it’s an interesting idea, I highly doubt that Gerson will ever get the government support to continue the initiative. Frankly, this seems to me like a lazy way of attempting to dodge the law. After all, the Pirate Party is now the 3rd largest political party in Sweden and is quite active in fighting those who oppose their platform of free information. Joining them in that cause would likely be more productive than sitting back and waiting to gain shelter under the veil of religion.