The Pirate Party Sets Sail in MassachusettsDecember 18th, 2011
The Massachusetts Election Division has officially recognized the Massachusetts Pirate Party (MAPP) as an approved political designation. So now you can register as a “Pirate.” Of course we’re not talking about the black-bearded scallywags of a 16th century Spanish galleon, or the volunteer coastguard of Somalia. We’re talking about the kind of pirates that piss off record labels and movie producers alike (except Lineplot Productions of course).
The Pirate Party “Captain” James O’Keefe (Not to be confused with James O’Keefe, the ACORN pimp) has set his sights on the PROTECT Intellectual Property Act (PIPA or S. 968) which he says would, “fundamentally challenge our cherished right of free speech” by allowing the holder of a copyright to blacklist any website suspected of intellectual property violations, cutting off access to it’s domain name, its search engine hits, its ads and its financing even if no judge has found them guilty of an actual crime. PIPA was called “disastrous” by the Electronic Frontier Foundation who said it was, “the worst piece of IP legislation we’ve seen in the last decade.” On December 6th the Pirate Party and other Internet freedom activists held a rally in Boston in front of the JFK Federal Building to call on Senators Brown and Kerry to oppose this bill and others like it.
There is an international organization of Pirate parties known as Pirate Parties International (PPI) that was formed in 2010 and a United State Pirate Party (USPP), but the MAPP is the only chapter officially recognized as an official political party in the US. The MAPP is currently looking for candidates to run for office in 2012. They want to challenge incumbents in every position from town school board seats to state senator and above. They are currently running classes to help potential candidates learn the basics of organizing a campaign. And in February they will hold their first Pirate Conference in the Boston area.