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Idle: File-Sharing Is Not a Religion, Says Swedish Government

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the more-of-an-ethos-or-perhaps-a-lifestyle dept.

Government 250

Dangerous_Minds writes "ZeroPaid is reporting on an attempt in Sweden to recognize filesharing as a religion. The religion's website calls this 'Kopimism' and says that sharing of knowledge is sacred. Apparently, Swedish authorities were not convinced. A recent report shows that the attempt failed to convince the authorities to recognize Kopimism as a religion."

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there is no way to disprove a person's religion (3, Insightful)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707496)

this is clearly an agenda and bias. everyone should have the right to be insane (er, I mean, have a religion). age of the fantasy should not be relevant at all.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707506)

this is clearly an agenda and bias. everyone should have the right to be insane (er, I mean, have a religion).

Care to cite any mainstream body of mental health professionals for the assertion that religious belief is mental illness?

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (5, Insightful)

Xacid (560407) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707548)

Well asking for that is a bit of a catch 22. It's kind of like trying to be President of the USA and be an atheist. It's not that it can't happen, it's that the majority of people wont allow it to happen (or at least hasn't). A mental health professional who could make such a claim is likely to not be in the profession much longer.

However, I did come across a report somewhere a while back that did make such a claim. I wish I could recall the specifics or find a link for you to support that.

But when you really get down to it - is faith any different than believing in any other supernatural item? An adult who earnestly still believes in Santa is pretty much in the same boat. At least that was my thoughts on the idea of faith after I learned Santa wasn't real. If that could be fabricated on such a large scale - why not anything else?

Mind you - I'm not saying there is or isn't any higher being or whatnot. But I'm certainly in no position to claim any factual knowledge of the existence or lack thereof of such a being.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707610)

Well asking for that is a bit of a catch 22. It's kind of like trying to be President of the USA and be an atheist. It's not that it can't happen, it's that the majority of people wont allow it to happen (or at least hasn't). A mental health professional who could make such a claim is likely to not be in the profession much longer.

Right, it's a big conspiracy and only Slashdotters can see the truth, nevermind that most researchers are not religious and have no especial interest in religion.

But when you really get down to it - is faith any different than believing in any other supernatural item?

The debate of belief and disbelief in God is a key part of the Western philosophical tradition. Philosophy of religion is a well-established field at the most respected universities and both theists and atheists are maintain inquiry and dialogue. Even if atheist philosophers feel there are weaknesses in certain claims by their theist colleagues, they don't make accusations of mental illness and draw risible comparisons to belief in Santa, and the dialogue goes on.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (2)

SilverHatHacker (1381259) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707622)

A rational response in a religious debate by an AC - this cannot be the Slashdot I know.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (2)

digitig (1056110) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707844)

That's probably why they chose to remain anonymous. Rational responses on religion can get a person into trouble around here.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (5, Insightful)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707850)

A rational response in a religious debate by an AC - this cannot be the Slashdot I know.

Hah! But it's only a "rational response" to the degree that trying to avoid answering hard questions is a rational goal -- that is, if you don't have a good answer and are trying to lead the debate off in another direction entirely. To recap, OP asked:

But when you really get down to it - is faith any different than believing in any other supernatural item?

and AC replied:

The debate of belief and disbelief in God is a key part of the Western philosophical tradition.

This is kind of like answering the question "Did you steal that money?" with "People like having money." It's a dodge, a retreat into generality. I find it hard to believe that AC (or you, or anyone else in the discussion) doesn't have a pretty specific opinion on the answer to OP's question.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

Bob Gelumph (715872) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708152)

+ a lot: Seeing past the misdirection

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (2)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707990)

A rational response in a religious debate by an AC

Where?

It must have been deleted...

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707642)

Just because Philosophy of Religion is a respected field as it doesn't mean that any Religion is accepted as true by science or academics in general, just that it exists to study.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707836)

When an opinion that you hold classifies large parts of the populace as mentally ill, tact and diplomacy requires that you keep it to yourself.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

Bob Gelumph (715872) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708158)

Time to Godwin this thread: When you live in Nazi Germany and you believe that the fervour, by what seems to be the majority of the populace, over extermination of millions is mentally ill, you should be a coward and keep your mouth shut.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (2)

guybrush3pwood (1579937) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708120)

Even if atheist philosophers feel there are weaknesses in certain claims by their theist colleagues, they don't make accusations of mental illness and draw risible comparisons to belief in Santa, and the dialogue goes on.

Mr. Richard Dawkins might disagree with you, my friend: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LfcYRKk0sa8 [youtube.com]

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (0)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708168)

Mr. Richard Dawkins might disagree with you, my friend

Richard Dawkins isn't a philosopher of religion. He's a biologist. When he gets involved in claims about religion, he transgresses the rules of inquiry and fails to continually re-examine his own arguments. Just compare the sincerity and humility of his late friend, atheist philosopher of religion J.L. Mackie, with Dawkins' wild demagoguery.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (2)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707958)

But when you really get down to it - is faith any different than believing in any other supernatural item? An adult who earnestly still believes in Santa is pretty much in the same boat.

"The President of the United States has claimed, on more than one occasion, to be in dialogue with God. Now, if he said that he was talking to God through his hairdryer, this would precipitate a national emergency. I fail to see how the addition of a hairdryer makes the claim more ludicrous or more offensive."
-- Sam Harris, Letter to a Christian Nation

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (2)

c6gunner (950153) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707992)

Mind you - I'm not saying there is or isn't any higher being or whatnot. But I'm certainly in no position to claim any factual knowledge of the existence or lack thereof of such a being.

That's a bit of a cop-out. You've already compared gods to Santa, so why would you then go back and try to take an impartial position? Would you, likewise, say that you are in no position to claim any factual knowledge of the existence, or lack thereof, of Santa Claus?

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (2)

bky1701 (979071) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708082)

Everyone agrees Santa doesn't exist. Some people still believe god exists.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (2)

c6gunner (950153) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708180)

Everyone agrees Santa doesn't exist. Some people still believe god exists.

What people do or don't agree on is completely irrelevant. If he's going to say that he has no factual knowledge of the existence/non-existence of gods, the only way to remain consistent is to say the same thing about everything for which we have no evidence, including (but not limited to) Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Loch Ness Monster, Bigfoot, Leprechauns, Unicorns, and the little purple lizard which lives in your ass (hey, just because you're not aware of it doesn't mean it's not there).

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

Bob Gelumph (715872) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708202)

Santa's meant to have a physical presence here on Earth, which can effectively be disproved. Plus, his "actions" can all be attributed directly to other causes (with no close examination of causality).
The god thing has far too many loopholes to be refuted so easily. Believers can always say that it's because god isn't in our universe, but merely pulling strings from outside of it, or that god doesn't want to get directly involved, etc. and works "through" people, blah, blah, blah... There's always a new dodge, and god's actions aren't considered predictable.
Santa is really meant to go flying around the world each year, in a physically impossible way, and deliver presents that have never been seen, once you take out all the presents from parents.

I think you can fairly distinguish different supernatural stories from each other, based on what claims are being made. Like leprechauns can be disproved if the assertion is that you can find them at the end of *any* rainbow, and you create a small rainbow in a lab, where both ends can be seen at once.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36708206)

But when you really get down to it - is faith any different than believing in any other supernatural item?

Of course it is. Faith is not a "state of believing", it is a confidence in your beliefs. If you think that only religious people can have faith (or even only people of a specific religious alignment) your mind must be very narrow.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

moortak (1273582) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708214)

Most modern behavior looked at without its social component can look frankly insane and irrational. That is why any diagnosis of mental illness that is going to be of any use needs to see if an otherwise irrational belief is a product of the larger culture. The Nacirema come to mind in these conversations.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (2, Insightful)

kurzweilfreak (829276) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707556)

Talking to invisible friends: check.
Believing in invisible friends: check.
Believing that wanting something really, really badly is going to make it come true: check.
Thinking that talking snakes, people that can walk on water, and other manner of physics-defying shit really happens: check.


Just because you can get a whole lot of people to go along with your batshit insane ideas doesn't mean that they aren't batshit insane. See the Heaven's Gate cult among all the other examples throughout history.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (2)

SilverHatHacker (1381259) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707572)

Believing that the Earth is round: check.
Believing that the Sun is the center of the solar system: check.
Believing that time slows down as speed increases: check.

Just because a lot of people think your ideas are insane doesn't mean they aren't valid.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707626)

Those things are, of course, comparable to religion. After all, all of it can be proven and observed and none of them are missing evidence where evidence should be present (definitely not religion)...

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

superwiz (655733) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707912)

After all, all of it can be proven and observed and none of them are missing evidence where evidence should be present

That's reeeeally not true. Theoretical physics is developed axiomatically. Axioms are based on an attempt at interpreting already-known physics, but it is often not verified through observation for a long, long time. General relativity and Quantum Mechanics are to this day irreconcilable. Even though both appear to be true under the conditions they address.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

marcosdumay (620877) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707970)

Every thing you have on your mind is a set of axioms. Next you'll complain that both are written in books.

Physics is a set of axioms that work (if they don't you are expected to throw it away), while religion is a set of axioms somebody told you are true (if they aren't you are expected to belive on it anyway).

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (2)

superwiz (655733) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708068)

Every thing you have on your mind is a set of axioms. Next you'll complain that both are written in books.

No. I have the fortune of having 5 senses. These act as input devices. Knowledge stemming from the input received though those devices is not axiomatic. It is observation-based. Is this gonna be another Kant argument? I don't quite feel like rehashing it again.

Physics is a set of axioms that work

Nonsense. Pure nonsense. That's not how scientific method works. Observation->hypothesis->theory->verification->rinse-and-repeat is the scientific process. "Hypothesis" can sometimes match a known axiomatic system. But any number of axiomatic systems are developed long before there is any hypothesis to match them (this is math). When hypothesis does match a known axiomatic system, the implications of the axioms (theorems, etc.) can be used to further advance a theory. If no axiomatic system matches a hypothesis, then a new axiomatic system needs to be constructed. The problem is that all observations are local (in the rigorously-defined mathematical sense of that word). And observations of different localities could lead to irreconcilable theories. None of this is to say that science is akin to religion. I am not against the argument that science is not religion and the two are different mental exercises. I am, however, very much against portraying science as something it isn't. My argument is not with how you describe lack of relationship between science and religion. It is with how you try to establish a false relationship between science and math. Most (overwhelmingly most) axiomatic systems are developed as mental exercises long before they have any kind of use to describe any observed phenomena.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (2)

Xaositecte (897197) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708130)

The specific examples he gave aren't missing evidence where evidence should be present?

Sun at the center of the Solar System, easily verifiable.

Shape of the earth: Not a perfect sphere, there's been an awful lot of work in this area.

Time slows down as speed increases: Have you used a GPS system recently?

There are plenty of subjects in theoretical physics that aren't fully understood at this point, but the theories are being constantly tested, questioned, and revised as new information is gained. It's not really comparable to religion.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707654)

Believing that the Earth is round: check. Believing that the Sun is the center of the solar system: check. Believing that time slows down as speed increases: check. Just because a lot of people think your ideas are insane doesn't mean they aren't valid.

Sure, but the difference between the claims in your post and the ones you are replying to is evidence for the claims. There is plenty of evidence for a round earth and relativity (it's not exactly right to say the Sun is the center of the solar system..the sun wobbles thanks to the pull from the other planets. The barycenter of the solar system [wikipedia.org] is not always within the sun. Not much evidence for talking snakes.

Not that lack of evidence is necessarily evidence against, and I respect people's rights to believe whatever they want (as long as they don't try to force other people to live by their beliefs), but there is a real question here. Is there some well-defined criteria to qualify as a religion? It feels like there's tremendous bias towards accepting existing religions versus new ones.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708122)

Well, of course all the evidence of a round earth is either misinterpreted or faked. Everyone knows the earth is a disk on the back of a big turtle. It's only the big round-earth conspiracy who wants you to think otherwise.

Oh, you point me to images from space showing a round earth? Well, have you ever been in space? No? So how can you claim to know those images are actually photos from space? You know, if they can fake a moon landing, they also can fake a photo of earth.

Oh, the old argument of the ships of which you see the mast first? Well, that's easy to explain. The light is falling. If the ship is too far away, only the light from the mast will reach you. The light of the rest of the ship will have hit the ocean before reaching you.

SCNR :-)

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708270)

Wait, if there are no elephants what stops the earth from going all wibbly-wobbly on the shell?

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

digitig (1056110) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707856)

And all religious people believe/do those things, do they? Or are you generalizing from a biased sample?

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (5, Insightful)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707874)

If you really, truly, genuinely believe that accepting the theory of relativity is equivalent to believing in the power of prayer, you are simply incapable of understanding or contributing to rational debate on this or any subject.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36708192)

Unless you have done the experiments yourself the only confirmation of the theory of relativity you have is whatever your village elders of choice told you.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (2)

wisty (1335733) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708086)

Believing that the Earth is round: check.

Believing that the Sun is the center of the solar system: check.

Believing that time slows down as speed increases: check.

Just because a lot of people think your ideas are insane doesn't mean they aren't valid.

I'll bite.

I studied physics. Trust me, it's valid. If you don't believe me, you can study it too. There's a fair amount of hard evidence, if you understand what you are doing.

Now, there's priests (and pastors, etc) who study theology. But they *don't* claim to have any better evidence than you do. It's like Postmodernism - you can study it for decades trying to get to the bottom of it; and end up with no more evidence than a 4th grader has. You will have a lot of circular arguments about why it's right, and how the best way to believe it is to not think too hard about the contradictions.

Sure, there's anecdotes about people who improve their life through faith, but there's also people who say their lives have been improved by weed or LSD. Only LSD has any real evidence behind it.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707818)

Just because you can get a whole lot of people to go along with your batshit insane ideas doesn't mean that they aren't batshit insane.

Indeed, just look at Ray Kurzweil. Bloke's an absolute loony, yet he's somehow accumulated a cult of nerds who think he's some sort of visionary prophet.

Don't know why I thought of him... something about your sig, I think.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

superwiz (655733) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707872)

Now, now... your language is openly hostile to the point where you mischaracterize the religious people.

You may think that your level of hostility is warranted by some priorities which you espouse in life; but, as an atheist, I don't want to be mischaraterized by the opinion that an atheist necessarily holds the same level of hostility as yours.

Talking to invisible friends: check.

Believing in invisible friends: check.

That's true of every conversation on the Internet. I think you really meant to say non-existent friends, but you didn't say it because that would have made this part of your argument a tautology.

Believing that wanting something really, really badly is going to make it come true: check.

Well, that's just plain inaccurate. The accurate way of stating why religious people pray for something is that they believe that expressing a wish will increase the chances of it happening -- not that it will guarantee that it will happen.

Thinking that talking snakes, people that can walk on water, and other manner of physics-defying shit really happens: check.

They don't believe that either. They believe that such events happened once. And the reason they re-tell stories about them happening is because they know that such things happening is not a normal everyday thing. If they expected to see a talking snake everyday on their way to work, I don't think they would think all that much of a snake which spoke once a few thousand years ago.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

Xaositecte (897197) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708174)

[quote]

Well, that's just plain inaccurate. The accurate way of stating why religious people pray for something is that they believe that expressing a wish will increase the chances of it happening -- not that it will guarantee that it will happen.

[/quote]

Thing is, prayer has been studied pretty extensively, and there's no evidence that it will [i]actually[/i] increase the chances of anything happening.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

Xaositecte (897197) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708186)

Leave it to me to just ignore the preview

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708170)

Thinking that [...] people that can walk on water

Of course people can walk on water. I've personally done it. The trick is that the water has to be frozen.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708230)

Just because you can get a whole lot of people to go along with your batshit insane ideas doesn't mean that they aren't batshit insane

Not long ago, on another forum, somebody went on a rant that they hoped aliens would land here so we could finally shut those religious nuts up. That should put a few things into perspective.

Face it, we all have that defect in our brains that makes us believe in things we've never actually seen. You'll have to find another way to rant about a group of people that doesn't make you out to be a bigot.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

Shompol (1690084) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707668)

Well, we know that spirituality can be acquired through head trauma [slashdot.org] .

There also was a rather powerful cult in Russia: Beloe Bratstvo (White Brotherhood) [eastwestreport.org] . They were famous for cases of kidnapping and brainwashing, sometimes taking whole classes of teenagers, right out of school. Unlike in US, religion is not protected in Russia, so eventually the organizers got arrested and the cult dispersed. What I find to be an interesting fact about this is their procedure of brainwashing: fresh converts were told to starve, and sleep while sitting on a chair. My guess is that this reduced brain capacity to reason and made "religion" conversion easy.

Of course, in no way do I want to imply that those born, raised or converted into religion have anything to do with mental illness, but sometimes the links do exist, often enough to make the topic worth a serious research.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708006)

Care to cite any mainstream body of mental health professionals for the assertion that religious belief is mental illness?

THAT is exactly how pervasive this illness is. You think that depression didn't exist before the DSM was written? Disease exists, whether you choose to write it down or not.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36708036)

this is clearly an agenda and bias. everyone should have the right to be insane (er, I mean, have a religion).

Care to cite any mainstream body of mental health professionals for the assertion that religious belief is mental illness?

Not a mainstream body of health professionals, but....

"Tell a devout Christian that his wife is cheating on him, or that frozen yogurt can make a man invisible, and he is likely to require as much evidence as anyone else, and to be persuaded only to the extent that you give it. Tell him that the book he keeps by his bed was written by an invisible deity who will punish him with fire for eternity if he fails to accept its every incredible claim about the universe, and he seems to require no evidence what so ever."
— Sam Harris

Exactly. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707508)

At least knowledge is tangible, unlike belief in a magic zombie carpenter.

Oh.

I see the problem; Kopimism isn't batshit enough.

Re:Exactly. (1)

superwiz (655733) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707928)

Tangents aren't tangible. In fact, all math isn't tangible. There is no such thing as a "two". There is two of something. But there is no "two." Hint: numbers are natures adjectives which we describe as nouns in order to facilitate our communication through abstractions. But our mode of communication doesn't cause these abstractions to exist. This was a tangential point however. </self_amusement>

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

TarMil (1623915) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707554)

They are only saying that it is not a religion. They are not preventing anyone from believing in whatever it is. If anything, it's actually the contrary: a group is more easily marginalized if it's clearly delimited and identified - and being considered a religion would definitely tend towards that.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (2)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707770)

A officially recognized religion has legal rights not available to other religions. It's pure discrimination.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (3, Insightful)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707788)

how can any MAN say what is or is not a religion?

the very notion is unprovable. it boils down to 'the club is closed. sorry, no newcomers.'

bullshit. fairy stories are just as fake from 2000 years ago as they are from last year.

the world would be far better off with no religion at all. however, we have this pox upon us and the least you can do is allow everyone to choose their crazy stories.

saying yours is sane and that guy's is not *is* what is insane.

hey, I think the absurd stories of some guy being a son of a god being but actually he's the new god being and the old god being somehow got pushed up/out somewhere - how is THAT not insane thinking? yet, we allow it. fully allow it and even *celebrate* this ignorance.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36708140)

how can any MAN say what is or is not a religion?

Because he has read the required government decrees on what constitutes a religion? In most jurisdictions, it's really simple: religion is a government-sanctified cult. It has nothing to do with beliefs, convictions or the number of followers.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707596)

I do agree that the burden of proof should be on the court. Also if I wanted to get some crazy religion established, I would not try to make a new religion, but rather claim I split off of existing religion due to ideological differences (Different interpretation of scripture etc).

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (0, Flamebait)

artor3 (1344997) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707652)

And this is why it failed. Because the courts aren't stupid, and were able to recognize this "religion" for what it is. A mockery of real religions by assholes who just want an excuse to steal things.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

impaledsunset (1337701) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707682)

Good job calling people who fight for your freedoms "assholes".

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707750)

What freedoms are they exactly fighting for? I consider someone an asshole when they intend to speak on my behalf but what I think they have to say is bullshit and garbage. I am fine if you believe in Jesus Christ or online piracy, but don't feel you are doing me a favor wasting my tax money trying to make it legitimate, that just makes you an asshole.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707934)

Good job pretending these assholes are fighting for anybody's freedoms when in reality-land, they are abusing it, the same way as any con-artist.

Genuine religious belief is one thing, but if you want to fight for my freedom, don't despoil religion to do it. There's plenty of other avenues to accomplish your goals.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

Bing Tsher E (943915) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708022)

They fight. For the right.

So that one day we will all be free to pass around a collection of snippets of recorded music and drama.

Back and forth, round and round we pass the stuff. 300 unique yet redundant, lossy copies of a recording of some musicians who played 'Freebird' back in 1971.

Yeah. That's worth fighting for.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707684)

A mockery of real religions by assholes who just want an excuse to steal things.

If it were a real religion, they'd just want an excuse to kill things instead.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707752)

They'd also want to take people's money by coercion.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707748)

And this is why it failed. Because the courts aren't stupid, and were able to recognize this "religion" for what it is. A mockery of real religions by assholes who just want an excuse to steal things.

"Real religions". Haha.

Also, we're talking about filesharing, not stealing.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (5, Insightful)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707802)

religion is a mockery of rational thought.

if you want to tell me about this jesus character, I'll tell you and equally bizzarre story. are you setting yourself up as JUDGE, here?

my, my. what WOULD your church elders say?

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (3, Insightful)

iCEBaLM (34905) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707826)

"Real religions" are just as fake as the one proposed by file sharers. That's the point. Why does one group get to have their imaginary friends but another doesn't?

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707888)

Why does one group get to have their imaginary friends but another doesn't?

The larger group forms a larger voting bloc.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707852)

Well, clearly the MAFIAA has already purchased your soul. Since there is nothing of value left to "steal" from you, why do you care?

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707884)

real religions

HA!
What makes a religion "real"?
The number of followers?
How long they've been around?
The number of talking snakes in their stories?
The number of heretics/blasphemers they've killed?

I'm thinking it's the last one.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

martin-boundary (547041) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707984)

That's not the point. Religion == tax benefits and other privileges recognized by law. Personally, I'd prefer if no religions are recognized whatsoever for any reason. That way anyone can believe whatever the hell they like and nobody gets benefits that others don't also get.

Re:there is no way to disprove a person's religion (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708172)

everyone should have the right to be insane (er, I mean, have a religion). age of the fantasy should not be relevant at all.

This is a tempting thought until we get into a conversation about Scientology. This is one of those times to remain consistent, folks.

You don't know what you're talking about. (1)

MoellerPlesset2 (1419023) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708264)

There's nothing about the _religion_ here. Nobody's being denied the right to believe whatever the fuck they want to believe.

What happened here was that an ad-hoc religious _organization_ was denied the right to be considered a religious organization in the legal sense. Contrary to what people here are blindly asserting, that does not give them any tax benefits in addition to the ones you already have as a non-profit (which is a prerequisite for becoming a recognized religious organization). It just changes some purely legal/organizational aspects and liabilities.

And the requirements to qualify here is, in the simplest possible terms, that it's a serious organization. That it has a substantial membership, a clear charter, an elected board, organized finances and has exhibited a certain 'permanence'. The "age of the fantasy" is **not** relevant, even though you claim it is. But the age of the organization **is** relevant.

It's got nothing to do with what they believe or whether or not they actually believe it, and everything to do with whether or not they're a serious organization. The law was written more or less specifically with the intent of stopping people from registering merely as a joke. And the letter of the law is being followed here.

Not to worry (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707536)

Completely in compliance with their 'religion', their personal information will be shared copiously amongst the Swedish, maybe even European authorities.

Re:Not to worry (2)

Chaonici (1913646) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707552)

As you know very well, copyright law has nothing to do with peoples' personal information.

Re:Not to worry (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707764)

Privacy laws designed to control identity fraud are far more aligned with trade secret than with copyright.

Why should one's religion allow one to break laws? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707540)

That's just anarchy. And despite what some loons may claim, it doesn't work.

Re:Why should one's religion allow one to break la (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707558)

That's just anarchy. And despite what some loons may claim, it doesn't work.

That doesn't mean it can't work, same goes for communism.

Re:Why should one's religion allow one to break la (1)

marcosdumay (620877) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708014)

Of course, they can work. They just need a different species to try them.

Re:Why should one's religion allow one to break la (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36708162)

Yes, that was my point. Thanks, I guess, for explicitly stating what should have been obvious by implication.

Re:Why should one's religion allow one to break la (2, Interesting)

sunspot42 (455706) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707620)

I don't know, ask the Catholic Church that question. It's clearly an international child molestation racket which largely functions to protect its leadership from prosecution, yet to date no legal authority has moved to shut it down.

Re:Why should one's religion allow one to break la (1)

cyber-vandal (148830) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707876)

That's because they have God [wikipedia.org] on their side.

Re:Why should one's religion allow one to break la (2)

CanEHdian (1098955) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707702)

This happens all the time laws will have exceptions (like slaugher cannot cause unnecessary suffering, except...) and also other rules. Sometimes a classroom can be half-filled with students with something on their head, but little Johnny is warned to take off his baseball cap. The trick to this is that "freedom of religion" trumps most other laws. Kopimism [kopimistsamfundet.se] sounds like very interesting as a religion... once there are enough followers, the government has no choice but to recognize it.

Re:Why should one's religion allow one to break la (1)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707938)

once there are enough followers, the government has no choice but to recognize it.

you're new here, aren't you? (checks uid). yup. figured.

the government (any of them, ANY of them) has no obligation to follow the will of the people.

can you honestly say that any gov has been an obedient servant to the public? I can't think of any country that truly fits that bill.

Re:Why should one's religion allow one to break la (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36708034)

you're answering something different than the subject of the thread 'Why should one's religion allow one to break laws.' If it is an exception, then they are following the law, not breaking it. Until there is an exception, they would be breaking the law. I understand what you are trying to argue, but it's not the same. An exception is put into a law precisely so that people aren't breaking the law. Right or wrong, it's not the same as breaking the law.

Re:Why should one's religion allow one to break la (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36708282)

This happens all the time laws will have exceptions ...

Then one wouldn't be breaking the law.

Re:Why should one's religion allow one to break la (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707808)

Sweden has a tradition of allowing certain behaviors in connection to religion, even when the same behavior would be illegal under other circumstances. For example, the Swedish form of freedom of speech (which is a bit different from the US first amendment) does not allow you to publicly advocate hate and violence against sexual and ethnic minorities if you're a neo-nazi or plain old nazi... but you can go right ahead if you are a pentecostal nazi.

I'm not saying it's a good idea to have this distinction, but it's how it's done for other laws in Sweden so it makes some sense to apply it to copyright too.

No shit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707542)

Says the rest of the world.

Not helping the cause (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707588)

If your goal is to try and convince people that file sharing is a good thing, then this kind of stuff is the exact wrong thing to do. It just makes it look like it's some sort of a scam.

Re:Not helping the cause (3, Insightful)

SilverHatHacker (1381259) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707606)

Funny, that can be said about most religions too. Followers do something stupid (Crusades, terrorism, crazy priests, etc.) and the rest of the world decides that anything connected to them must be stamped out immediately for the greater good.

Doing it wrong (2)

Bram Stolk (24781) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707602)

They are doing it wrong: you need to lock up the information, so you can get religious status (Scientology).
I wonder what court ever decided it was OK for LR Hubbard's crap to get religious status?

Jedi and Scientologists next? (1)

Oyjord (810904) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707614)

I wonder how many Jedi and Scientologists just started cancelling their summer vacation plans to visit Sweden....

Re:Jedi and Scientologists next? (1)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707814)

maybe they still want to see all the furry animals and the w0nderful telefone system?

(no, realli)

Re:Jedi and Scientologists next? (1)

Mashiki (184564) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708226)

I know the force exists. Everyone knows you can use it to crush someones throat. Our hero Darth Vader has done it several dozen times.

It makes sense (4, Insightful)

Chris Down (2350174) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707618)

"This religion doesn't rely on needless superstition and blind faith."

"Doesn't fit the criteria, then."

Re:It makes sense (5, Interesting)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708054)

Well, then make a god for your religion. Call him The Pirate. And create your own holy scripture. It might begin like this:

1 In the beginning, The Pirate created the universe.
2 But there was no one The Pirate could share that universe with.
3 Therefore The Pirate said: "Let us create humans, so that the universe is shared." And so he did.
4 And The Pirate said to the humans: "I've created you to share.
5 I hereby order you to share all knowledge I give you, as well as all knowledge you get from others, unless that knowledge is of private nature."
6 And he said: "Multiply, and multiply your knowledge, so you have more knowledge to share.
7 You shall make images of things in the world and of things in your mind.
8 And you shall write texts both about reality and about things you imagine.
9 And you shall create all sorts of art.
10 And you shall share all this with others.
11 And you shall not demand any compensation for sharing, just as I don't demand that you pay for sharing the universe."
12 And the humans complied, and everything was well. This era was known as the paradise.
13 But the devil didn't like that, and he planted into the humans the sin of greed.
14 And he planted into their mind the shortsightedness, so they didn't see the advantage they got from everyone sharing.
15 And thus the humans said: "We have invested much work in our knowledge and in our art. We want to have an advantage.
16 And we don't want those who didn't invest that much work to not have that advantage."
17 And thus the humans stopped sharing their works for free, and demanded to be compensated.
18 And The Pirate got angry at the humans because they violated His orders.
19 And The Pirate said: "You have sinned. Therefore I will throw you out of the paradise.
20 And you shall not be left in again until you all return to the spirit of sharing."
21 And he created illnesses to punish the humans.
22 And he limited the natural growth of the plants humans could eat, and made many of the plants poisonous.
23 And he made the problem of surviving hard, so the humans would have an incentive to share their knowledge in order to fight those dangers.
24 But the devil's influence was strong, and therefore the humans didn't work together to solve their problems.
25 Instead they fought wars over the limited resources, and killed each other.
26 And those humans who found ways to increase those resources didn't share their knowledge, but hid it as well as they could, so only they would profit from it.
27 And they made laws to prevent others from sharing knowledge.
28 And eventually those who hoarded the knowledge ruled the world.
29 But the world was in a miserable state.

You of course need prophets of sharing (you may even borrow some from other religions and reinterpret them; this gives more "legitimacy" to your religion). And you need a cult (which ideally involves people meeting in person; part of that cult is of course the exchange of copies of files, but it may also have other aspects like mutual signing of PGP keys, and very important, preaching the religion of sharing).

They should try Adoration of Intellectual Property (1)

youn (1516637) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707628)

works for RIAA and MPAA, got them to change laws in their favor :)

Re:They should try Adoration of Intellectual Prope (1)

marcosdumay (620877) | more than 3 years ago | (#36708018)

They are into adoration of Money.

Intelectual Property is just a means.

one thing is clear (1)

superwiz (655733) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707660)

Whoever made the ruling never read slashdot.

WHAT (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36707696)

my GOD is gonna get you for this sweden

Re:WHAT (1)

JDeane (1402533) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707800)

We must summon the AOL Running man!!!

Curious (2)

Sniper98G (1078397) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707732)

I am curious as to what their criteria are. If Scientology can be a religion, why cant anything?

MONEY (1)

bussdriver (620565) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707798)

MONEY is the winning argument every time. If you lose, you didn't spend enough MONEY.
Scientology has money and possibly many believers are lawyers... but more likely the lawyers simply believe in MONEY (as most lawyers do.)

Re:Curious (1)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707830)

"sir, you are hereby accused of rational thought. would you please come with us. don't make this more difficult than it needs to be."

They forgot the crucial step (2)

7-Vodka (195504) | more than 3 years ago | (#36707902)

  1. Start a religion
  2. Bribe politicians
  3. Non-Profit!

Nothing is a religion. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36708098)

Even if there was a God (and let's face it there isn't) every religious thing which people fight about was created by people. The obligation is to the leader of the sect who wrote the rules, not to any God.

God didn't say that Jews had to wear a skull cap. He/She didn't insist that Sikhs should wear a turban. Human beings chose to use a cross as a religious symbol - God didn't dictate it. God told you to cut the foreskin off your newborn baby? Oh please (You might ask yourself what kind of an adult is drawn to such a pastime) You pray five times a day? Mohamed told you to do that, not God.

The Swedish court was right. File sharing is not a religion, but nothing else which is currently defended as a religious obligation which excuses some group from the rules which the rest of us have to abide by is an essential part of any religion either.

It's about time Atheists stood up for their rights and either we all have to comply or none of us.

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