Sweden Recognizes File-Sharing Group as Church

Posted January 5th, 2012 at 8:35 pm (UTC-5)
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The Swedish government has recognized as a “church” a group that openly opposes copyright protection.

The group, called “Kopimism,” considers itself a religious organization. It says on its website that it believes information is holy, copying is a sacrament, and file-sharing is a form of religious service.

Kopimism's self-appointed “spiritual leader,” 20-year-old philosophy student Isak Gerson, says Swedish government recognition was a “large step” toward the day when the group can live without fear of persecution. The group has applied for official recognition three times.

Gerson says the group opposes any form of copyright and encourages piracy of all types of media.

Critics say government recognition of the group could hamper a crackdown on piracy, but others have dismissed the significance of the move.