Advertisement
Advertisement

German celebs fire at Pirates over copyright

Share this article

German celebs fire at Pirates over copyright
Photo: DPA
09:07 CEST+02:00
Over 1,400 German celebrities and artists have signed an open letter protesting a new political culture that they believe sanctions the "theft of intellectual property" on the internet.

The letter, to be published in major weekend paper Die Zeit, is an indirect attack on several political parties who have responded to the rampant success of the Pirate Party by announcing initiatives to relax copyright law when it comes to the internet.

The letter had 100 initial signatories, including writers Charlotte Roche and Martin Walser, author and musician Sven Regener, and veteran actor Mario Adorf.

The letter describes copyright as an "historically won civil right" and the "material basis for individual intellectual creativity." It also challenges the argument that the interests of copyright holders and so-called "hosts" - i.e. publishers, record companies and royalty collectors like GEMA – are automatically at odds.

This is a rejection of the view of some internet activists, that artists should bypass such companies and sell their work directly to consumers.

German artists have been campaigning against the political inroads made by the Pirate Party more vociferously recently.

A similar letter by 51 scriptwriters from Germany's long-running cult detective show Tatort accused the "internet community" of attempting insert a culture of "everything for free" into German law.

Several artists also took out an advert in financial daily Handelsblatt in which they appeared under the slogan "My head belongs to me."

Much of Germany's creative community was also galvanised by a March radio interview by Regener, singer in the band Element of Crime, in which he ranted against the Pirate Party.

Christopher Lauer, spokesman for copyright issues in Berlin's Pirate Party, responded to the artists on Twitter, "Regardless of how little we agree with the campaign in Die Zeit, we have to take it seriously. We need to reach out."

But Leonhard Dobusch, blogger on netzpolitik.org was less understanding: "the attempt to suggest there is a unified front between copyright holders and hosts," only proves that "that this unity is breaking down."

The Local/DPA/bk

Share this article

Advertisement
Advertisement

From our sponsors

7 ways to help your child adjust to life abroad

Moving abroad can be a big adjustment for anyone - and it's even harder when the move wasn't your choice. So how do you help your children settle in when your family makes the move?


Database error:

You have an error in your SQL syntax; check the manual that corresponds to your MySQL server version for the right syntax to use near ')
			ORDER BY
				entries.ENTRY_MODIFIED DESC
			LIMIT
				10' at line 20