April 19, 2009
Pirate Bay sentences prompt protests
More than 1,000 people turned out across Sweden to protest the convictions of the Web operators of Pirate Bay for illegal file-sharing, activists said.
Protest leader Malin Littorin-Ferm of the Pirate Party's Ung Pirat youth league said the Swedish government was trying to control the Internet by convicting the operators of the popular Swedish Web site, the Swedish news agency tt said Sunday.
We young people have a whole platform on the Internet, where we have all our social contacts -- it is there that we live. The state is trying to control the Internet and, by extension, our private lives, Littorin-Ferm said.
The four operators of the Web site, which tracked BitTorrent files for visitors to share, were convicted of violating Swedish copyright law and sentenced to a year in prison each Thursday.
Pirate Party leader Rickard Falkvinge, whose party has 21,000 members, told the tt news agency the conflict surrounding file-sharing gives Swedish youth a chance to become politically active.
These citizens have never previously had a significant issue with which to become involved, he said.