Legalizing Internet Piracy through State-Invented Religion? a Case Study of the Swedish State's Acknowledgement of the Missionary Church of Kopimism As Religion

Tuesday, July 15, 2014: 9:45 AM
Room: Harbor Lounge B
Distributed Paper
Per-Erik NILSSON , Research Fellow, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden
In 2011 the Swedish Kammarkollegiet, the oldest public authority in Sweden, acknowledged The Missionary Church of Kopimism (Det missionerande kopimistsamfundet) as a faith based community (trossamfund). The Church is built on the idea that copying and the spreading of information is an ethical right. As a registered faith based community the Church qualifies as an organized and by the state approved religion, as such it is protected by Swedish constitutional law where it is stated that freedom of religion is absolute. Regardless of the sincerity of its creators, does this mean that the Church has found a way to legalized piracy for its members? If so, what future implications could this case have? The overarching question we would like to ask in this article is how the category religion enables the state apparatus to produce legitimate and illegitimate subject positions and what the consequences of this production are in relation to power and ideology.