by Mike Masnick

Filed Under:
activism, germany, pirate party

Pirate Party Wins Again In Germany

from the momentum dept

It really appears that The Pirate Party is no fluke in Germany. After winning 9% of the vote in the Berlin parliament elections, and then 7.4% in Saarland, the party has now received 8.2% of the vote in Schleswig-Holstein. These are each local "state" elections, and there's another big one next week, in Northrhine-Westphalia, where they're apparently polling in a similar range. It seems clear that The Pirate Party is certainly surpassing the German Green Party as the preeminent 3rd party -- and it seems to be having an impact. As we noted, the Greens have tried to co-opt much of the Pirate Party's agenda as their own, and Germany's major political parties have started to show a much more reasoned approach to copyright as well.

And it's definitely getting increasing notice. Last week, we pointed to an op-ed piece in the NY Times about the Pirate Party in Germany, and this week, they've followed it up with a full article about the Party's success, which also discusses how the Greens are frantically trying to convince the younger generation that they're cool, too:
The Greens were once the insurgent activists on the political scene. Now founding members from the ’68 generation have started collecting their pensions. A Green campaign poster with a cursor arrow pointing at a Facebook thumbs-up icon carried a whiff of desperation to keep up with the Pirates.
Of course, it's worth noting a point that's been left out in many of the discussions about the success of the German Pirate Party: Germany has some of the worst copyright laws around, especially on issues like secondary liability. Perhaps those two things are linked... and perhaps those who keep pushing for more draconian enforcement of copyrights might want to take that into account. There's little to no evidence that such laws do anything to slow down infringement, but it sure seems to make people respect copyright law even less.

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  1. identicon
    InnerPartisan, 8 May 2012 @ 9:27am


    Zippy, you seem to oblivious to the fact that Germany has a mixed-member proportional representation voting system. That basically means that small parties get representation in both houses, and do in fact become part of governments. You know, coalitions? Like in the UK right now?
    Case in point, neither the FDP nor the Greens ever had more than 15% of votes on the federal level, yet have been part of German governments, and influenced national politics immensly.
    I'm not saying the Pirates are there yet, but if they manage to keep present numbers the *will* have quite an impact on German politics.

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