Top Pirate Party Member Has DMCA Takedown Notices Issued In Her Name

from the thinking-it-through dept

Julia Schramm is one of the rising stars of the German Pirate Party: in April, when she was just 27 years old, she was elected to the national party's executive committee. No surprise, then, that she is against copyright: in a podcast she described intellectual property as "disgusting" (original in German.) More surprising is that, despite this, she signed a contract with Knaus-Verlag, part of the publishing giant Random House group, to write a book. Perhaps the $130,000 advance had something to do with it.

The book is called "Click me: confessions of an Internet exhibitionist", and sells for around $22 ($18 for the Kindle version), which seems a bit pricey for just 208 pages. That wouldn't matter if the contents were of particularly high quality. Alas, it seems that many feel they are not: at the time of writing, the book has 10 one-star reviews on Amazon.de, some of which are pretty damning -- "it's really a shame about the trees that were cut down for this book" -- just two five stars, and one three stars. The German magazine Der Spiegel called the book "a disaster."

Schramm can probably live with the reviews (after all, she still has that $130,000 advance.) What's slightly more problematic for her career as one of the top Pirates is the fact that just one day after the book appeared, her publisher sent a takedown request to a site that was hosting a, er, pirate copy -- and in her name:

"This file is no longer available due to a takedown request under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act by Julia Schramm Autorin der Verlagsgruppe Random House."
Given her background and stated views, some might say that's pretty, well, disgusting....

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  •  
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    Ninja (profile), Sep 18th, 2012 @ 10:52am

    I think I may find myself agreeing with the trolls if they choose to express themselves in this article.

    Other than that... Damning.

     

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      Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Sep 18th, 2012 @ 11:14am

      Re:

      Pirate Mike is supporting piracy by pirating the news article about the Pirate Party's pirate leader's pirate book! piracy!

      :slobbers on the couch: Rawr!

      /troll

      [yes, I know its Glyn's story]

       

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 10:54am

    If I were her, I'd upload another copy to make up for it.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 10:54am

    best she loses her position in the Pirate Party, issues an apology and crawls under a rock somewhere after reading her publisher their fortune.

     

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    Zakida Paul (profile), Sep 18th, 2012 @ 10:57am

    Ah Politics

    "Something is only unacceptable when I don't do it"

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 11:06am

    Wow, another hypocrite in the piracy movement!! Welcome sister!!!

     

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    sehlat (profile), Sep 18th, 2012 @ 11:07am

    It may be her publisher, *claiming* her approval.

    Let's see how she reacts.

     

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    Dionaea (profile), Sep 18th, 2012 @ 11:19am

    WTF?!

    The bimbo signed a publishing deal?! What the hell happened to self publishing?! She could have seen this coming a mile away. If you're the leader of the pirate party one of the stupidest things you can do is get a publishing deal. It's like being in league with the enemy, even more so if they inevitably start taking down the content you produced. Whether you consent to the takedowns doesn't matter, you can't get into a contract with an oldfashioned publisher and run a party which advocates more open access at the same time.

     

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      Dionaea (profile), Sep 18th, 2012 @ 11:22am

      Re: WTF?!

      Correction: *a* leader, not *the* leader. I got so pissed I misread...

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 11:36am

      Re: WTF?!

      That is precisely what I thought.
      On the other hand: It proves that she is pretty cheap to buy.

      I guess that is good for her in the long run, if she can fend off this incidence! It is just good business to make people aware how to approach you and principles are only applicable as a platform to launch a career as a lifelong politician.
      If someone cannot be bought there is something seriously wrong with them!

       

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      E. Zachary Knight (profile), Sep 18th, 2012 @ 11:40am

      Re: WTF?!

      Based on the the reviews of the book, self publishing would have made her nothing while the publishing deal got her $130,000. Doesn't make it right, just saying.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 11:52am

        Re: Re: WTF?!

        shouldn't be about the money, she should do it for the movement that shes trying to support by being in the Pirate Party. And maybe do one of the pay what you want for it or a donate type thing for people to support her. Stepped in to the line of fire and embrace piracy like we have been seeing some content creators recently.
        Most recent article http://www.techdirt.com/blog/casestudies/articles/20120917/20071120413/pirate-bay-pays-off-one-enter prising-game-developer.shtml

         

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          E. Zachary Knight (profile), Sep 18th, 2012 @ 12:31pm

          Re: Re: Re: WTF?!

          I'm not defending anything. I just think that on a purely financial basis she did the right thing for her. Nothing more, nothing less.

          On a philosophical level, I agree with you. What she did and by association has allowed to be done, is quite contrary to the position she held.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 1:25am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: WTF?!

            "I'm not defending anything. I just think that on a purely financial basis she did the right thing for her. Nothing more, nothing less."

            What's she appears to be doing is saying "do as I say, not do as I do". Why should it be all good for her, and all suffering for everyone else? Why can't she stand up like a big girl, release her book as an ebook for free, and sell the scarce like miniputt games or lottttts of t-shirts?

            Nope. She supports piracy, but also is more than willing to sign into the copyright world and take the big advance money.

            The Pirate Party needs to either show her the door, or accept that they will be labeled as being two faced about this stuff.

             

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            Tim Griffiths (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 5:04am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: WTF?!

            She's never going to be paid to write a book again and has effectively destroyed her future as a politician. Even looking purely in financial terms the best can be said is that it was right thing to do for short term gain.

            Sad thing is so long as she'd been vocal about reforming copyright rather than it being disgusting, which is likely more in line with German PP policy, this really wouldn't have been as much of an issue.

             

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      zegota (profile), Sep 18th, 2012 @ 1:47pm

      Re: WTF?!

      "Bimbo?" Fucking seriously? Can you criticize someone without using sexist terminology?

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 6:53pm

        Re: Re: WTF?!

        Some people here think not being able to access a movie due to regional restrictions is equivalent to racism, so I'mma guess no.

         

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      monkyyy, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 11:58pm

      Re: WTF?!

      "she still has that $130,000 advance."
      ummmm i think i know why she didnt selfpublish

       

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    gorehound (profile), Sep 18th, 2012 @ 11:31am

    Why would anyone ever think that a Politician will remain Honest and True.
    Every one of them have greasy palms and ulterior motives.
    This News did not surprise me one bit.Welcome to Reality Pirate Party as you have now been assimilated.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 11:43am

    she should have done a digital copy only on her own and im sure she could have found some one with in the pirate party that would also help, then release it for free and use the pirate bay for that.

     

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    The dude, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 11:47am

    Pissrate Party

    Bruhahahahahahahah!

    A delicious story, measured with her own ideas and ethics and reproved.
    The piraten partei should make her head roll and issue an apology to his members; how are they going to be credible if they don't practice what they preach?

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 12:03pm

      Re: Pissrate Party

      Most pirated do practice what we preach by at the very least releasing under CC-BY-(sa)-(nc)

      Not that all who release under that license under that are pirates mind you, but there are many who are.

       

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        The dude, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 12:17pm

        Re: Re: Pissrate Party

        I am by no means attacking writers or members of the pirate party, but what pisses me of here is that she criticizes the "system", belongs to the head of the PP, but when it comes to put her pocket where her keyboard is she just closes her eyes and plays dumb.

         

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    weneedhelp (profile), Sep 18th, 2012 @ 12:01pm

    Given her background and stated views, some might say that's pretty, well, disgusting....

    C'mon Glen, you know she has no controll over the take-down. She sold the rights.

    Whats disgusting is them issuing the take-down under her name instead of Knaus-Verlag, or Random House group. They issued the take-down.

    So a twenty-something year old girl made a mistake. Wow never in the history of man have we seen a person in their 20's do something stupid.

    Now this stupid little pirate party hit piece will give the trolls an excuse to say she is a hypocrite, etc.

    Im sure you did your due diligence Glyn and tried to get her side of the story before you wrote this; Right?

     

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      The dude, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 12:11pm

      Re: Given her background and stated views, some might say that's pretty, well, disgusting....

      The problem is that she as a pirate party member, in fact as a visible figure, leading figure should have known better what would happen in such a case, and she isn't that young anymore 27 (the book came out in 2012 if i am not wrong).
      If this was done without her knowledge it just proves that she may not fit her position in the party

       

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      Ninja (profile), Sep 18th, 2012 @ 12:21pm

      Re: Given her background and stated views, some might say that's pretty, well, disgusting....

      Im sure you did your due diligence Glyn and tried to get her side of the story before you wrote this; Right?

      That would be nice. But you see, he's just pointing the inconsistency here. It's worth following the story to see what happens next. I do agree that we make mistakes (and you don't need to be in your 20's to make some pretty dumb ones) but I disagree this is a pirate party hit piece.

      Also, if the tolls come troll we actually have ammunition against them. TD also criticizes the pirates. I know, I know TD never condoned piracy but rather what they often do is to suggest new ways of facing it instead of criminalizing your entire population but a direct critic is something the trolls can't possibly twist. Can they?

       

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      William Chambers, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 2:47pm

      Re: Given her background and stated views, some might say that's pretty, well, disgusting....

      Couldn't agree with you more, but then I suspect most folks would rather rant then think about it for a moment.

       

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      MJ Ray, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 11:50pm

      Re: Given her background and stated views, some might say that's pretty, well, disgusting....

      Random House is owned by neoliberal Bertelsman. Of course they choose to do whatever inflicts most damage on neoliberalism's opponents.

       

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      MJ Ray, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 11:50pm

      Re: Given her background and stated views, some might say that's pretty, well, disgusting....

      Random House is owned by neoliberal Bertelsman. Of course they choose to do whatever inflicts most damage on neoliberalism's opponents.

       

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      techflaws (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 8:57am

      Re: Given her background and stated views, some might say that's pretty, well, disgusting....

      Her side of the story? Like this?

      - "I'm not against copyright, I'm against the term copyright, cause it's loaded!"

      - "It was to be expected. Now the angry mob* is raging against me".

      * her term for anyone who uttered criticism of her book.

      That position? Yeah, makes the whole story look really thought through.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 12:27pm

    Long John Silverette

    Aren't Pirates notoriously untrustworthy ?

    This is just typical political doublespeak...say one thing, do another...nothing new here.

     

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    bigpallooka (profile), Sep 18th, 2012 @ 2:36pm

    I smell a conspiracy...

    Lure the lady in with a wad of cash... upload the book because you have paid her for the rights...send down a take-down notice in her name... copyrightists 1 - pirates 0

    Easily could have been that way... if you believe she has enemies in the "industry"

     

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  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 5:58pm

    just like Mike Masnick,, quite willing to sell out for a quick buck..

    if the price is right, you can buy and sell masnicks ass..

     

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      gnudist, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 7:13am

      Re:

      Funny that "selling out" seems to mean Mike says what he actually believes.

      The main example of Mike "selling out" is that mike is accused of being on the google payroll and yet mike is still consistant with his views from before google even existed.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 2:03pm

      Re:

      If the price is right you can buy or sell anything or anyone. Some are not so interested in money, but everyone can be persuaded by the right kind and/or amount of leverage(tm)!

      Selling yourself is all anyone do in a capitalistic society!

      It is like peeing in the bath: Most men do it and those who deny it are doing it more than the rest!

      Mike Masnick at least has the gut to admit who has leveraged him for certain services to show where the some of the potential conflict of interest occur. You don't...

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 18th, 2012 @ 6:04pm

    Wow, this is possibly one of the most damning pieces when it comes to the whole Pirate Party movement. Why would one of their leaders even consider signing a book deal and taking an advance, knowing that the work would be copyright as a result?

    This is the basic stuff. It's not like she signed a deal without knowing or anything. $120,000 doesn't just pop up out of the ground from people planning to give your stuff away for free.

    It shows a healthy dose of "do as I say, not do as I do". It makes you wonder how many other Pirate Party members are profiting from the old system privately, while calling it out publicly?

    Thanks Glyn, you just ruined Mike's week.

     

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      Tim Griffiths (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 2:22am

      Re:

      The pirate party, at lest in the UK (not read up on the Germans policy) espouses reform of copyright not it's abolition. As such I do not see a problem with members of that party using copyright so long as they do so with in the bounds they'd like to see in reform, such as pledging the copyrighted work to the public domain in the term they think should be set.

      So to look at this and say "she can't use copyright and be a PP member" is silly and unhelpful. The issue here is that she's gone against her publicly stated personal beliefs which means that as a member of that party people can rightly no longer trust her to do what she says.

      It's not an indictment of the party it's self but of one member. How the party and their members react to this that is what the movement should be judged on.

      Hypocrisy of politicians is only relevant to their party when it means going against policies and laws they are pushing for. Which depending on the German PP may or may not be the case here.

       

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        Seegras (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 4:25am

        Re: Re:

        You're on the spot.

        And besides, all the pirate parties have somehow different views. Ours (the Swiss one) stands in for
        - copyright lasting 14 years from publication
        - every work the state finances must be public domain
        - no third-party and additional rights for broadcasters
        - no liability for transmitting entities
        - no data retention laws
        - no mandatory collecting societies, and no mandatory inclusion of the whole body of works for members of such a society.
        - strong fair use
        - DRM must be illegal
        - private copies must be legal

        We've got quite a nice paper on that, in German, tough: http://www.piratenpartei.ch/Modernisierung_des_Urheberrechts
        The German Pirate Party would better have copied that one (it's CC-BY, so they could legally) ;)

         

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          Tim Griffiths (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 5:08am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Seems pretty much in line with the British Party. I'm about to start research on that party with a view to joining it in the near future. I've always been worried I'd be disturbingly good as a politician so I thought I'd start dipping my toes in to the water of a party who's main drive is something I can agree with... in a none hypocritical way :)

           

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            identicon
            Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 6:20pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            I wouldn't join it until they change then name. For the moment, they appear to be yahoos and freetards, and that will mean they will never get past being a one plank party.

            Basically, you would be cursing yourself to forever be voting for a party that will have no real power.

             

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      techflaws (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 8:59am

      Re:

      Thanks Glyn, you just ruined Mike's week.
      Or not.

       

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    identicon
    Anonymous Cowherd, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 1:27am

    Oh look, publisher sending out takedown notices without asking the author...what else is new?

    If someone wanted to pay me $130,000 for writing some crap nobody wants to read, I'd take it. Pretty much everyone would. This wasn't a book that had anything to do with pirate ideology. I'd object to my name used in a takedown notice, but I wouldn't call it hypocritical, much less "disgusting," to sell a bad book for good money if someone wants to buy.

     

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    Squig, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 4:21pm

    This interview clears some aspects of this up (in German): http://www.welt.de/politik/deutschland/article109312559/Mit-feindlicher-Netz-Reaktion-habe-ich-gerec hnet.html

    And this blog post brings up some other, different perspective (in German, too): http://blog.fefe.de/?ts=aea722a5

    As regards the pricing: that is pretty normal for Germany, books are massively more expensive here than in the US/UK, and E-books haven't really taken off here because they are bound to the same pricing laws as physical books (which is kinda stupid, but at least kept more independent bookshops in business than you have elsewhere, which in itself is also stupid, but on a more understandable level I guess).

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 20th, 2012 @ 11:45am

    @ 130k, she stuck it to the man.

     

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