German Pirate Party Wins Seats In Fourth Straight State Election

from the it's-becoming-a-movement dept

It now seems pretty clear that the German Pirate Party is a legitimate player in that country. A week after its third straight win in local state elections, the German Pirate Party appears to have won a similar percentage of votes in the country’s largest region, North Rhine-Westphalia. The estimates are that it will end up with 18 seats on a little under 8% of the vote (Update: more final results are now showing 20 seats, so it’s an even larger victory). In Berlin, Saarland and Schleswig-Holstein, the party was able to get similar votes as well, suggesting that this isn’t a regional thing and has become a recognizable force — especially among young people in Germany. The real question now is if it can use this to create some momentum going into the national elections next year.

Separately, it’s worth pointing out that this result came about after it was noted a few days ago that the German Pirate Party’s website was being censored in state schools, by a filter that claimed that the site was about “illegal drugs”. It seems like pretty blatant censorship to block a political party’s website — even if it was “accidental” — for daring to question the prevailing law enforcement regime around certain banned substances.

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Comments on “German Pirate Party Wins Seats In Fourth Straight State Election”

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30 Comments
Mike Masnick (profile) says:

Official numbers say 20 seats, not 18

Minimal research would have yielded the official (preliminary) results: and they show 20 seats for the PIRATEN

That’s great. I’ll update the post.

As for the “minimal” research, I wrote the post last night when it was at 18. Please do not assume laziness where a perfectly reasonable explanation might suffice.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re:

Not that internet should be filtered for the nation but schools require certain content to be blocked in the US. Working with that system is complicated and ever changing. We try to keep most content open but block what is required by state such as porn, weapons, drugs, etc. Sometimes we will come across a site that should be open and sometimes it should be blocked. The only thing to do is to change the filter’s policy on those sites. It isn’t a keyword filter and most of the time it does a good job but no system is perfect.

Anonymous Coward says:

not surprising really. the Dutch Pirate Party is being subjected to censorship over TPB. i bet there are some seriously worried politicians around atm! i wouldn’t be surprised by further blocks for the party in other countries as well, especially if the entertainment industries can see their grip on the corrupt slipping away!

Anonymous Coward says:

I am surprised of where the voters seem to have come from. The Conservatives is not the first place I would look. The left wing party seems to have lost a lot too. Guess a good deal of protest-votes went their way in the previous election.
The Greens are a pretty new party politically. I would have thought that they would bled more to the pirates than they did.
It was expected that CDU lost a lot of voters since they went for the “austerity is king”-tactic. Could be Die Gr?ne gaining a lot from CDU and loosing about the same to Piraten.

Would love to hear a German giving reasonings for how the things went as they did.

Anonymous Coward says:

You know that your political opponents are too powerful when they decide to go the censorship route to prevent you from educating others about your political agenda.

Just look at Texas, and how their state education board butchered US history, doing things like making Joseph McCarthy into a hero, and claiming based on widely debunked evidence that most of the lives his communist witch hunt ruined were actual communists, which makes what he did perfectly ok.

mudlock (profile) says:

Proportional Representation

Mike, you seem surprised that they got so many seats with just 8% of the vote. Well, of course they got that many seats; 20 is 8% of the legislature, and Germany uses proportional representation. Every party that gets at least 5%, gets a proportional percentage of the seats. And that’s the #1 reason that the Pirate Party has been able to have these successes.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re:

Privately, on ones own internet connection I agree, but with a school district and limited funds it is better to deny access to certain sites to avoid being litigated by an angry parents. Even if the school district wins the lawsuit, it still loses with the time and money lost defending. Besides the school internet is used for educational reasons. Extra curricular activities can be done at home.

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