German Police Seize Pirate Party Servers Days Before The Election... Because Anonymous Was Chatting?

from the oh-come-on dept

Early this morning, news started breaking that the German police had seized the German Pirate Party's servers. The timing was interesting, in that it happened just two days before an election, which certainly seems questionable. The details, so far, suggest that the action wasn't against the party, but due to a French complaint, because Anonymous was using the Etherpad installation on the server, PiratenPad, to communicate and plan. If you're unfamiliar with Etherpad, it's a pretty popular online collaboration tool. I've used it for other things, including preparing notes for conferences. It's ridiculous overkill to seize an entire server because of the way some people were using Etherpad. It makes no sense, and shows (once again) how law enforcement seems to overreact to things they just don't understand.


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    Anonymous Coward, May 20th, 2011 @ 11:03am

    The underlying intent is probably to harm the Pirate Party in the elections. Little do they realize that this will only serve to encourage more voters to vote for the pirate party after seeing them as the victims of government more wrongdoings.

     

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    Chris Rhodes (profile), May 20th, 2011 @ 11:04am

    Not Hard to Understand

    It's ridiculous overkill to seize an entire server because of the way some people were using Etherpad

    I think you're making the assumption that the stated reason was the real reason.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, May 20th, 2011 @ 11:07am

      Re: Not Hard to Understand

      It will only backfire. People are now aware of these wrongful seizures and they will view the pirate party as victims of more government wrongdoings and that will only further highlight the need for electing the pirate party. Governments are seriously so stupid sometimes.

       

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        :Lobo Santo (profile), May 20th, 2011 @ 11:40am

        Re: Re: Not Hard to Understand

        You're laboring under the assumption the gov is that stupid (and, let's be honest, they might be) but what if they're not?

        What if the 'Pirate Party' has already been secretly subverted, and whoever gets elected as a Pirate Party representative will tow the line and do the same science-damned thing every other politician does--which is "screw the public"?

        Then, these "stupid" actions from the government serve the interest of those really in power and get their hand-picked puppets elected as Pirate Party reps.

        (Set and natch.)

         

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          Anonymous Coward, May 20th, 2011 @ 1:14pm

          Re: Re: Re: Not Hard to Understand

          Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.

          or

          What if the government knows that you will think the 'Pirate Party' has already been secrectly subverted by doing this act, so they didn't subvert it knowing that you won't won't vote for the pirate party because you don't trust it-- thus lowering turnout, manipulating elections, and continuing to screw the public.

          If all we're going to do is throw what-if's and hypotheticals around I think this discussion would be better suited for alex jones' website instead.

           

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          Liz, May 20th, 2011 @ 1:17pm

          Re: Re: Re: Not Hard to Understand

          That sounds vaguely familiar. A home grown, grass roots, counter movement to an established political system. Subverted by those already in power and turned into a mockery of it's original goals. Next we'll see radicalized morons at the helm of the group who re funded by zealot billionaires that prefer the status quo.

           

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          G Thompson (profile), May 20th, 2011 @ 11:09pm

          Conspiracy of Conpsiracies

          You have been reading an old Text from the "Dark Horde" about the Conspiracy of Conspiracies haven't you? ;)

          [found late 1990's and I repost every so often]

          CONSPIRACY: Cliques Of Normals Secretly Performing Insidious Rituals Aimed at Controlling You!

           

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    Anonymous Coward, May 20th, 2011 @ 11:17am

    "The details, so far, suggest that the action wasn't against the party, but due to a French complaint, because Anonymous was using the Etherpad installation on the server, PiratenPad, to communicate and plan."

    I think the most important point here is that if this were any mainstream party, this likely wouldn't have happened. The government may have reacted, but not the way it did here.

    But, either way, it's still good publicity for the pirate party. You can't buy this sort of publicity, this sort of publicity is very valuable. Things often have unintended consequence.

     

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      ChurchHatesTucker (profile), May 20th, 2011 @ 11:55am

      Re:

      I hope you're right, but I fear the average voter will just hear that the police siezed their servers, and they must be some kind of terrorist enablers.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, May 21st, 2011 @ 12:16pm

        Re: Re:

        Looks like you're wrong. Things are different now.

        "In response to the takeover of its servers, the German Pirate Party has been tweeting up some sturm und drang today, and its "#servergate" hashtag is the second highest "trending" tag in Germany.

        Not surprisingly, the main German police website is now down, as is the website of federal investigators (the BKA). As one Anon put it in a tweet, "#Anonymous to german police: 'Let me introduce myself...' #servergate #PoliceMeetsCocks." "

        http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2011/05/german-police-seize-pirate-party-servers-lookin g-at-anons-toolkit.ars?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=rss

        The first time I clicked on the Twitter link just now I got the message that the Twitter servers were too flooded to render the website (forgot the exact message). Only upon refreshing did the rendition show up.

        Not only did the government fail at preventing Anonymous from attacking (they still conducted their attacks, though I disapprove of their activity), they actively brought more attention and publicity to the pirate party and further advanced their popularity. Their intent may have been to retard the efforts of the pirate party, but the result was that it only enhanced their efforts. The pirate party actually used this to their advantage to campaign for better laws and due process and to advertise themselves as the party to deliver such. Expect the pirate party to receive even more votes. It's called the Streisand effect.

         

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    Mr. Smarta**, May 20th, 2011 @ 12:09pm

    Yeah... sure.

    Considering the Etherpad app is opensource, why didn't Anonymous just set up their own server with SSL connections? What a load...

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 20th, 2011 @ 1:26pm

    Election ?

    In germany or france ?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 20th, 2011 @ 3:02pm

    missed me now ya gots to kiss my....

    ass

     

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    Anonymous Coward, May 20th, 2011 @ 7:22pm

    Quite honestly, given how Germany has ruled on hacking tools in the past, I wouldn't be surprised if some officials were conflating the Pirate Party with Anonymous. After all, they're both 'crooks', so they have to be collaborating, right?

     

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