Bloggen Rockfashion använde av misstag en upphovsrättsskyddad bild, och fick utan förvarning en faktura på 8 900 kronor. När de vägrade betala stämdes de, och som argument för att de var skyldiga lyftes att en av ägarna är medlem i Piratpartiet. UP:s Gustav Nipe sammanfattar bra på sin blogg, och jag skrev ett lite längre inlägg på engelska till Pirate Times (kort sammanfattning nedan).
Bildombudsmannen is well known in Swedish Pirate circles for contacting websites concerning copyright infringment, and threatening to sue them if they don’t pay a cease and desist letter. Recently they targeted a blog editor, but this time with a tactic not previously known – using the editor’s membership in the Swedish Pirate Party as evidence of guilt.
Rockfashion, as many before them, first assumed that Bildombudsmannen was a government agency, and only after doing some research found it to be a privately owned company. They then contacted Teste, arguing that they had acted unknowingly, and that Rockfashion was a non-commercial website. Teste continued arguing his case, and so the Rockfashion editors chose to refuse to pay the requested money.
In response, Teste put forth additional factors as evidence of guilt, one of which is the fact that one editor, Joachim Persson, openly supports and is a member of the Swedish Pirate Party. According to Persson, however, while he sympathises with the party’s view on privacy, he is against its views on copyright issues, something he has clarified previously in public blog posts which Teste had chosen to ignore.This one case ended relatively well, but it still took all too much time and money, and there are many cases of bloggers who would rather just give up and pay the invoice immediately and without protest. There are literally hundreds of cases left to go, and there’s no seeing a stop to the business model any time soon.