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Pirate Bay Co-Founder In Solitary Confinement

Soulskill posted about 2 years ago | from the has-arms-and-is-extremely-danger-ish dept.

Crime 259

pigrabbitbear writes "Things aren't looking awesome for Pirate Bay founder Gottfrid Svartholm, who's currently under lock and key in a newly built jail about 15 minutes north of Stockholm. Svartholm's mother Kristina says that her 28-year-old son is being held in solitary confinement for 23 hours a day without any human contact other than his interactions with the guards. It's been nearly two months since Svartholm was arrested in Cambodia, where he'd been living for years, and extradited back to Sweden, where he's due to spend a year behind bars and pay a $1.1 million fine for copyright offenses related to his role at the Pirate Bay. But that's not why Sweden's being so tough on him in prison. Authorities believe he may have played a role in the hacking of Logica, a Swedish technology company with ties to the country's tax authorities. They haven't charged him with any crimes yet in that case, however."

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As Fashion Nihilist said : Fuck you Stockholm ! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41733895)

As Fashion Nihilist said : Fuck you Stockholm !

Real nihilists(tm) say: (1)

hessian (467078) | about 2 years ago | (#41734385)

If you flout their rules, AND THEY CATCH YOU, expect to find yourself in solitary confinement.

Moral of the story: don't get caught.

-or-

Have sensible rules.

LOL (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41733897)

Take that pixel thief

Re:LOL (2)

Penurious Penguin (2687307) | about 2 years ago | (#41734555)

To the gallows with this barbarous binarian plagiarist beast!

Messed up (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41733903)

This is insane, why is a computer programmer under solitary confinement?

Re:Messed up (5, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | about 2 years ago | (#41733937)

Because information is more dangerous than violence.

Re:Messed up (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 2 years ago | (#41734277)

Assuming the information is used to hack into a secret government computer, and you choose to play "Global Thermonuclear War." If you decide to play chess instead, not really.

Re:Messed up (1)

Synerg1y (2169962) | about 2 years ago | (#41734371)

Shhh... nobodies caught on yet!

Re:Messed up (2)

helix2301 (1105613) | about 2 years ago | (#41734403)

They did the same thing to Kevin Mitnick he spend almost all of his 5 years in jail in solitary be cause "he could launch a nuclear bomb from a phone"

Re:Messed up (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734617)

I've known Kevin for years. He did not spend 5 years in solitary. He spent 8 months in solitary and it was over a dispute about whether to sign a document that, among other things, would allow them to restrict his telephone privileges (yes, there was actual concerns that he had the ability to hack the telco system - but not start a nuclear war.) He spent the vast majority of his time in general population awaiting trail.

Re:Messed up (1)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 2 years ago | (#41734641)

be cause "he could launch a nuclear bomb from a phone"

If that a quote from the powers-that-be, or from Mitnick?

Re:Messed up (4, Funny)

bobthesungeek76036 (2697689) | about 2 years ago | (#41733947)

Can you say "sending a message"? Sure, I knew you could...

Re:Messed up (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734063)

This is insane, why is a computer programmer under solitary confinement?

Because said computer programmer doesn't know shit about taking a stand - sometimes you end up in jail.

I don't beleive in his cause. Sorry, but copying others work isn't some noble work that will set me free. It's a delusional goal.

Getting me a "free" copy of anything doesn't make me free. Not at all.

You want freedom? Real freedom? Then you define freedom to me first.

Then we'll talk.

HINT: Getting free programs (source code too), movies, books, music, etc ... isn't freedom.

Other hint: see Saudi Arabia.

Re:Messed up (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734143)

lol you mad.

Re:Messed up (4, Insightful)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about 2 years ago | (#41734195)

I get your point: If you want to make money on content, rip-off creators and artists with LAWYERS, not with TECHNOLOGIES.

Re:Messed up (3)

Synerg1y (2169962) | about 2 years ago | (#41734397)

Then... please stop using netflix, itunes, amazon video & music, etc...

Piracy was only about stealing to some, to the rest it was a way of saying I'm sick of paying $15 for a cd to hear one song 10x.

Re:Messed up (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734161)

To protect him from all the other inmates that want to make him their b!@#h?

There's a conceptual problem with the policy, however.

Once the Criminals in government begin taking into account that "There's no where to hide from [Insert Country] law, irregardless of how wrong it is", their bid for global domination will commence. You can never have enough power.

Once the Criminals who break the law begin taking into account that "There's no where to hide from [Insert Country] law, irregardless of how wrong it is", they will adjust their tactics.

To steal one must willfully suspend belief in property, and to willfully suspend belief in property one must, inevitably through the discipline of practice, willfully suspend belief in self. Both the thief, and the victim, experience the loss of self.

Raids will evoke distributed "Terrorist" Cells, Arrests will be countered with retribution attacks in increasing severity, physical targets will move to countries where they can become hardened targets evoking military involvement resulting in casual piracy turning to militant piracy with the objective of destroying content producers. All the while the concept of property becomes perverted until it fails to exist whatsoever.

The fundamental problem here is the lack of a mediator to find a common ground upon which both parties can agree. The eventual result of no mediator, specifically a government mediator, means the publics view of the events swings towards extreme fascism until, inevitably, collapse becomes inevitable. If you think that's extreme, read Ben Bagdikians media monopoly and ask yourself why every news station ignores the same things at the same time (one would think each would cover something unique and different).

Re:Messed up (5, Insightful)

Doodlesmcpooh (1981178) | about 2 years ago | (#41734187)

They can hold him for a year for the Pirate Bay conviction possibly longer if they add on time for non payment of fines. However they think he was involved in hacking Logica but as yet they can't prove it. Most people break eventually in solitary and will say and do anything to get out of it. They probably plan on leaving him there for his whole sentence "for his own safety" unless he confesses.

Re:Messed up (3, Insightful)

r1348 (2567295) | about 2 years ago | (#41734431)

Basically they're giving him the Guantanamo treat.

Re:Messed up (4, Insightful)

nitehawk214 (222219) | about 2 years ago | (#41734301)

This is insane, why is a computer programmer under solitary confinement?

Because they can't find enough evidence to charge him with a real crime, so they just torture him instead.

Re:Messed up (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734581)

Solitary confinement doesn't technically fall under 'torture', so they can leave him there for 20 years if they want, going absolutely insane due to the complete lack of stimulus. But it's not torture, oh no. It will absolutely destroy his mind, and ruin the rest of his life, but it's not torture, so it's all fine and good and legitimate.

Isn't the legal system wonderful.

Re:Messed up (5, Informative)

blippo (158203) | about 2 years ago | (#41734391)

It's standard treatment in Sweden. If the crime is non-trivial, the attorney almost always requests solitary confinement. The reason is to prevent the accused from interfering with the criminal investigation, but I think at least partly it's done in order to break the accused, helping the interrogations.

Sweden has been criticized by the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture for this practice, but nothing seems to change.

I'd say that I am not that proud of our judicial system right now. This practice, the not-so-competent handling of Assange, the recent turn of events relating to a convicted serial killer (Tomas Quick) being found innocent for crime after crime, after withdrawing his own confessions, and the follow-up revelations of a closed boys-club judicial system - these events makes me ashamed and worried.

It's not necessarily attributed to malice, but it is certainly incompetence combined with the attitude among Swedish bureaucrats that the government is always right, always efficient, and certainly *never* wrong.

Re:Messed up (2)

frosty_tsm (933163) | about 2 years ago | (#41734595)

It's standard treatment in Sweden. If the crime is non-trivial, the attorney almost always requests solitary confinement. The reason is to prevent the accused from interfering with the criminal investigation, but I think at least partly it's done in order to break the accused, helping the interrogations.

As is the case with most slashdotters, he should be immune to their tricks. Better than being surrounded by frat boys and jocks (aka general population).

Re:Messed up (1)

YrWrstNtmr (564987) | about 2 years ago | (#41734631)

Bradley Manning in solitary in the US = TORTURE!
Julian Assange in solitary in Sweden = meh...business as usual.

I wonder why this is...

hacking of Logica? (2)

nurb432 (527695) | about 2 years ago | (#41733953)

If so, then that would be crossing the line.

Re:hacking of Logica? (5, Insightful)

shentino (1139071) | about 2 years ago | (#41733979)

His booking papers only cite pirate bay activities.

If it was because of hacking, then his paperwork damn well should say so. The fact that it doesn't means that this is nothing but an attempt to use allegations of hacking as an excuse.

Until someone puts their ass on the line and signs a piece of paper under oath as to why he's locked up, I'm not going to believe a word they say.

Re:hacking of Logica? (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734069)

Until someone puts their ass on the line and signs a piece of paper under oath as to why he's locked up, I'm not going to believe a word they say.

If you'll believe it afterwards, I have an affidavit stating that I own an over-water property I think you might be interested in purchasing.

Re:hacking of Logica? (-1, Offtopic)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 2 years ago | (#41733995)

If so, then that would be crossing the line.

Yeah... fingering a keyboard and embarassing some corporation is certainly a crime worthy of punishment equal to manslaughter. /snark

Re:hacking of Logica? (3, Interesting)

Mephistophocles (930357) | about 2 years ago | (#41734071)

...a crime worthy of punishment equal to manslaughter.

Remember, the death penalty for hacking has been seriously discussed [nytimes.com] . If such a discussion can be considered serious.

Re:hacking of Logica? (1)

nitehawk214 (222219) | about 2 years ago | (#41734423)

...a crime worthy of punishment equal to manslaughter.

Remember, the death penalty for hacking has been seriously discussed [nytimes.com] . If such a discussion can be considered serious.

What the fuck did I just read? John Tierney is a disgusting hack of a writer. Kind of drivel like this belongs on extremist blogs that nobody reads. This is why print media is dying.

Re:hacking of Logica? (1)

Synerg1y (2169962) | about 2 years ago | (#41734453)

Some may argue that the potential of hacking has only touched the tip of the iceberg.

W/b hacking the power grid during a heat strike & causing some deaths of the young & elderly?

Or causing a component at a factory to explode by overriding it's original programming?

It's no longer about gaining user names / passwords to pron sites and finding out-dated wordpresses. Something like stuxnet has shown the dangers of the next level.

Re:hacking of Logica? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734233)

Yeah... fingering a keyboard and embarassing some corporation is certainly a crime worthy of punishment equal to manslaughter. /snark

But is that commentary on the severity of the sentencing when it involves said corporation-embarassing-keyboard-fingering, or on the severity of the sentencing when it comes to manslaughter?

In addition, what jurisdiction is being referenced here? And what type of manslaughter?
If just going by Swedish law, wikipedia has citations stating "Manslaughter (DrÃ¥p) is defiend[sic] as murder when it is less severe, either due to the circumstances or the crime itself, and is punishable with a fixed prison term between 6 and 10 years. (3-2 Â)".
That's certainly more than 1 year.

In the U.S. you've got a bunch of distinctions of manslaughter. The lowest I've seen (under Measure 11) is 6 years 3 months for Man 2, 10 years for Man 1.

In the U.K. there is technically no minimum, but supposedly 7 years is pretty common.

That's not to say there aren't people convicted of manslaughter who walk scott free in sentencing, or that there aren't corporation-embarassing-keyboard-fingering people who have been sentenced to more severe punishments... but that would warrant a far narrower brush to be painting with.

If so... (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | about 2 years ago | (#41734177)

Of course, he has not been charged with any crime, so "if so" would be an overstatement. I might as well say, "nurb432 decapitated a 12 year old girl and drank her blood? If so then that would be crossing the line."

(But you probably would not face as severe a punishment for that crime as for running something like TBP...)

Re:If so... (1)

nurb432 (527695) | about 2 years ago | (#41734319)

Except im not in jail currently, and with a suspicion attached to my back. There is a difference.

Re:If so... (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | about 2 years ago | (#41734685)

He is in prison for aiding copyright infringement by running a torrent site. How does that raise suspicion of him hacking into anything?

Not charged (4, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 2 years ago | (#41733959)

So a man is languishing in solitary confinement for years, not allowed visitors, and is mistreated to a degree that if he were a prisoner of war it would be considered a war crime under the Geneva convention, without being charged, given a trial, or given an opportunity to defend himself... and when this man is finally released, they'll be sending him back to jail because he enabled people to download music and movies... and he's only in that country because of the aforementioned.

Does that seem right to you?

Re:Not charged (4, Insightful)

Vintermann (400722) | about 2 years ago | (#41733993)

He's not been there for years yet. However, it seems not unreasonable to think that they're trying to "soften him up" for the Logica case. Plenty of "civilized" governments exploit the fact that the population is largely unaware of the psychological effects of extended isolation.

Re:Not charged (5, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 2 years ago | (#41734181)

Plenty of "civilized" governments exploit the fact that the population is largely unaware of the psychological effects of extended isolation.

Yeah, it destroys a person, utterly and completely. A few months of it a person can endure; But a year? Years? When they finally open that door, there won't be anything left but meat. The person will have long ago left. It's disgusting and inhumane. A bullet would be more compassionate.

Re:Not charged (1)

Frank T. Lofaro Jr. (142215) | about 2 years ago | (#41734419)

I'd think putting a hacker in general population would be worse, with all the rape, beatings and stabbings.

Hackers could probably handle being alone a lot better.

Re:Not charged (4, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 2 years ago | (#41734619)

I'd think putting a hacker in general population would be worse, with all the rape, beatings and stabbings. Hackers could probably handle being alone a lot better.

That argument is patently absurd. That's like saying when a woman gets raped, it's not as bad because they can handle it better. It doesn't matter whether someone is better or worse equipped to handle violence and mistreatment -- it's still inhumane, and the person is still damaged after. Solitary confinement is torture; It's something no civilized society should tolerate. How we treat our most vulnerable and disadvantaged citizens is the true measure our own humanity.

Re:Not charged (1)

BadgerRush (2648589) | about 2 years ago | (#41734653)

They don't have “rape, beatings and stabbings” in Swedish prisons.

Re:Not charged (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734507)

It's hell for an extrovert, sure enough.

But an introvert? Oh please.

If you want to torture an introvert, force them to go to parties and dance with a bunch of people they don't know. Even better, have some of those dumb ass "icebreaker" games beforehand so everyone gets to talk about themselves to a bunch of total strangers.

Re:Not charged (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734651)

It certainly sucks, but just being in isolation for long periods of time most definitely does not automatically destroy a human being. People can survive that easily. Cosmonauts have had a lot of experience with this on Mir. It is inhumane, but can be survived in tact. You might come out a bit kooky right off the bat, but you aren't gone for good. Boredom and lack of social contact sucks. It doesn't drive a sane person insane (not at the time periods we are talking about.) If this were decades, and he was in a hole at alcatraz, I'd give you that. Otherwise, its just going to be very very boring and passing time will be a challenge. He can get books, he does have regular interaction with other people, etc. It is not as horrible as death.

Re:Not charged (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734429)

He's not been there for years yet. However, it seems not unreasonable to think that they're trying to "soften him up" for the Logica case. Plenty of "civilized" governments exploit the fact that the population is largely unaware of the psychological effects of extended isolation.

This does not sound like the kind of solitary confinement that produces severe psychological damage. He gets an hour a day in the exercise yard with others; his mother, at least, says that she visits him regularly, and if she can, perhaps others do; he has access to e-mail, books, and television; and he talks to the guards. I'm not saying I would like this, and I have no idea about the justice of his incarceration, but calling this solitary confinement really seems like trying to put the worst spin possible on the prisoner having a room to himself. His mother describes him as being quite entertaining during their talks, which makes some of the comments here sound alarmist.

Re:Not charged (0)

not already in use (972294) | about 2 years ago | (#41734007)

So a man is languishing in solitary confinement for years

No.

they'll be sending him back to jail because he enabled people to download music and movies

No, he made millions of dollars allowing other people to download music/movies/games/software that other people made and own the rights to. Oh, he was a brazen prick while he did it, too. Karma is a bitch.

Does that seem right to you?

If he gets a fair trial, yes.

Re:Not charged (4, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | about 2 years ago | (#41734079)

So what if he made millions? Does that warrant solitary confinement? What kind of bootlicking pro-authoritarian are you?

Re:Not charged (3, Interesting)

Elbereth (58257) | about 2 years ago | (#41734357)

When it comes to jail, many people will spontaneously express enthusiastic support for extreme authoritarianism, even when they'd never support it otherwise. Prisoners, by virtue of having been found guilty by a court, are safe to treat as subhuman, as far as they're concerned. It may very well be an outlet for their authoritarian tendencies, but I think it's also equally likely that they're just assholes experiencing shadenfreude.

Re:Not charged (2)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | about 2 years ago | (#41734383)

He's a member of the 1%. If there's anything I learned from OWS, it's that it's good for laws to be abused as long as the victims are acceptable targets.

Re:Not charged (1)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 2 years ago | (#41734693)

He's a member of the 1%. If there's anything I learned from OWS, it's that it's good for laws to be abused as long as the victims are acceptable targets.

Then you learned some bad lessons, man. "The rule of law does not mean that the protection of the law must be available only to a fortunate few or that the law should be allowed to be prostituted by vested interests for protecting and upholding the status quo under the guise of enforcement of civil and political rights. The poor too have civil and political rights and the rule of law is meant for them also, though today it exists only on paper and not in reality." - Supreme Court of India, PUDR v. Union of India (AIR 1982 SC 1473, 1477),

Re:Not charged (2)

pclminion (145572) | about 2 years ago | (#41734253)

No, he made millions of dollars allowing other people to download music/movies/games/software that other people made and own the rights to. Oh, he was a brazen prick while he did it, too. Karma is a bitch.

I'll agree with your sentiment when corporate leaders are held to the same standard. Wear a suit, fuck over another company or group of individuals for millions of dollars, you get solitary.

Until then, please cram your self-righteousness directly into your ass.

Re:Not charged (1)

Tokolosh (1256448) | about 2 years ago | (#41734585)

"Rodriguez's Sussex albums were issued in South Africa, where they sold upwards of half a million copies, but Rodriguez received no money for those sales."
http://www.nashvillescene.com/nashville/rediscovered-singer-songwriter-sixto-rodriguez-embraces-newfound-fame-through-the-doc-searching-for-sugar-man/Content?oid=3036007 [nashvillescene.com]

Ok, some more solitary cells needed.

Re:Not charged (5, Funny)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | about 2 years ago | (#41734263)

No, he made millions of dollars allowing other people to download music/movies/games/software that other people made and own the rights to

Hm...made millions of dollars on creative work that other people made and have copyrights on...where have I heard that before...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hollywood_accounting [wikipedia.org]

Funny how there was no torture^H^H^H^Hsolitary confinement for the people responsible for that.

Oh, he was a brazen prick while he did it, too

Otherwise known as a hero:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steve_jobs [wikipedia.org]

Re:Not charged (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734337)

So a man is languishing in solitary confinement for years, not allowed visitors, and is mistreated to a degree that if he were a prisoner of war it would be considered a war crime under the Geneva convention, without being charged, given a trial, or given an opportunity to defend himself... and when this man is finally released, they'll be sending him back to jail because he enabled people to download music and movies... and he's only in that country because of the aforementioned.

Does that seem right to you?

From the article:

“He is kept under restrictions as decided by the prosecutor. TV in his cell. He can buy cigarettes and sweets from a kiosk that comes Monday and Wednesdays,” Kristina explains.

“He is offered one hour ‘outdoors’ each day in some kind of exercise yard with high concrete walls. That is all he is allowed to leave his cell for. No gym, no opportunities to meet other people except for the guards.

“I have got permission so far from the prosecutor to meet him once a week for an hour each time, together with two policemen who listen to our conversations and stop us if we get close to the ‘case’, which we happened to do in the beginning. It has been a process of amazing bureaucrazy (Freudian spelling!) every time before getting there, I assure you.”

Allowed to exercise daily, allowed to meet with a loved-one that he trusts weekly, access to television and books, kept safe in solitary as opposed to housed with the general population of psychopaths; it's not quite the sensory deprevation white cell that we might imagine.

Depending on how long he's there, it actually sounds like my idea of the ideal vacation.

Re:Not charged (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734347)

He's been there for a couple of months, he has a access to books, tv, letters, and newspapers- plenty of things to keep him occupied. Heck, that's as much "interaction" as some unincarcerated people have every day.
I have little to no sympathy for people guilty of copyright infringement. It all boils down to their inability to control themselves. "Oooh I want that DVD now, but I don't have $20. Instead of waiting until I have the money, I'll just download it for free!" Or the digital hoarders who collect terabytes of video and audio files simply because they lack the intelligence to pursue a more useful hobby.
If people would exercise a little self control they wouldn't be getting themselves into troubles such as this.

Re:Not charged (1)

Nyder (754090) | about 2 years ago | (#41734609)

So a man is languishing in solitary confinement for years, not allowed visitors, and is mistreated to a degree that if he were a prisoner of war it would be considered a war crime under the Geneva convention, without being charged, given a trial, or given an opportunity to defend himself... and when this man is finally released, they'll be sending him back to jail because he enabled people to download music and movies... and he's only in that country because of the aforementioned.

Does that seem right to you?

That would never happen in The United States of America....

anonymity is the only defense against power (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41733971)

this guy offended power but didn't stay anonymous, so he was nailed

unless you are rich and powerful expect the machinery of society to be turned against you if you ever upset the rich and powerful

what we need is an anonymous, distributed internet

freenet and tor are both good starts but too hard to use for normal people

now is the time to start building it, when the regular people rely on the conveniences of the internet but don't yet feel the restrictions on their freedoms
if there is no alternative built by the time they do feel it and look for one then we will have lost

learn how to configure and run a freenet and tor node on an old computer in your house, throttle the bandwidth if you want to and don't run an exit node if that is scary

but run a node, you can be part of the solution

look at http://project-byzantium.org/ if you are feeling more adventurous

Re:anonymity is the only defense against power (2)

alexander_686 (957440) | about 2 years ago | (#41734157)

Martin Luther King, Jr., Mohandas Gandhi, and Henry David Thoreau would disagree.

If you want to change an unjust society, somebody has to step forward with pride and dignity to defy the system. If nobody does then we know then digital pirates are just selfish freeloaders who want to watch free movies.

If you want to be heard, stand up and be counted.

Re:anonymity is the only defense against power (1)

fredprado (2569351) | about 2 years ago | (#41734377)

In our cynical world martyrs don't work anymore. It avails not to sacrifice yourself for the cause. Anonymity is the only real defense against governments these days. And we are best served by efforts to make anonymity more impervious to governments than by martyrs.

Re:anonymity is the only defense against power (1)

Antipater (2053064) | about 2 years ago | (#41734629)

Really? Because I'm pretty sure martyrs just brought down four Middle Eastern governments, with a fifth on its way.

Martyrdom doesn't work for little shit that nobody cares about. Martyrdom is the only solution against actual, we-will-kill-you-if-you-resist oppression. People fight for symbols, not for faceless ideals.

Re:anonymity is the only defense against power (1)

Gaygirlie (1657131) | about 2 years ago | (#41734561)

Their examples are great, yes, but I have to disagree. In our modern world where everyone is constantly under barrage from all kinds of distractions it is way too easy to just forget what a single person, or even a small group of people, do. Also, the constant barrage of war here, war there, terrorist threat under that, threat of terrorist thread over those makes these things seem too insignificant for the Average Joe to bother his pretty head about. Standing up and making yourself a martyr just doesn't work any longer, there are too many distractions everywhere.

Re:anonymity is the only defense against power (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734591)

I can't decide if you're trying to be ironic or not.

Two of the people you listed were martyred. There are many other examples, as early as Socrates in ancient Greece (and most likely earlier). Of course, a lot of cases we simply don't know, because history is written by the winners.

Now, the case in point (the Pirate Bay founder) is not as drastic as that, but he's in solitary confinement for copyright infringement, for crying out loud.

I'd say that remaining anonymous looks like a damn good option.

Solitary Confinement (1)

hutsell (1228828) | about 2 years ago | (#41733975)

Really? Am I missing something about why this is necessary? Otherwise, it seems to be an act of vengeful spite or an unreasonable fear of computer technology?

Re:Solitary Confinement (2)

Iamthecheese (1264298) | about 2 years ago | (#41734017)

nope, it's spite. You can't expect to piss off people giving bags of money to congresscritters without suffering for it.

Re:Solitary Confinement (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734519)

nope, it's spite. You can't expect to piss off people giving bags of money to congresscritters without suffering for it.

But, of course, if one corporation were to violate OUR copyrights (say, a GPL violation), or worse, publish guides to doing so while thumbing their noses at us and trolling our community, all while exploiting an antiquated legal loophole they're desperate to keep open at all costs, a thousand lifetimes of solitary confinement wouldn't be enough justice. Tearing the guilty's head off in front of their spouses and children then forcing them to drink the newly-spilled blood directly from the neck hole wouldn't be enough justice. We'd DAMN well make sure we nevar forgive, nevar forget, all out of an overinflated sense of spite we'd have the balls to call "justice", and anyone who questions US would be labeled "teh enemy".

Just wait for the next GPL violation article on Slashdot. Take the top-rated comments and see how far above spite WE are. Then imagine all of those commenters with nigh-unlimited guns, armies, money, and the support of mass media and just TRY to say we'd do any better. I dare you.

Re:Solitary Confinement (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734189)

Sweden has been criticized for this kind of thing before, but as far as I know jail (not prison) here is worse than prison because it's practically solitary confinement.

Re:Solitary Confinement (1)

MozeeToby (1163751) | about 2 years ago | (#41734197)

I honestly thought their justice system was more enlightened over the pond. I mean, even the US there are some people that are starting to wake up to the fact that solitary confinement is an extremely cruel and tortuous thing to do to a human being. Fuck, I mean, green peace gets pissed if you keep a whale or ape locked up alone for any length of time; how can anyone think that is an ok thing to do to a human being in any but the most extreme circumstances.

Re:Solitary Confinement (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734703)

As others have already posted, this is not the "solitary confinement" that you have in US prisons. From what I've gathered he's simply in a standard jail (i.e. where you end up before sentencing if arrested) cell with a TV, books, etc, gets post, access to the library and gets to go outside for an hour each day. The article as well as the summary is hyperbole even if I don't agree with the reasons for his imprisonment.

canadian company (1)

Keruo (771880) | about 2 years ago | (#41733981)

Logica is owned by CGI, it's canadian company now.

Re:canadian company (1)

JaredOfEuropa (526365) | about 2 years ago | (#41734683)

And before that it was a UK-based company. I used to work for these guys; not a bad company and in the past they have been involved in some rather cool stuff [wikipedia.org] . They seem to have lost their way somewhat in the late 90s though, going from being a respected tech firm to trying to be a so-so consultancy, and growing by buying several other businesses and doing a poor job of integrating them into the whole.

In other news... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41733983)

In other news, recent financial transcripts show record donations by both the RIAA and MPAA to Swedish re-election campaigns.

If only he had raped or murdered (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734015)

Then he would at least have gotten a trial.

Exessive (1)

Bo'Bob'O (95398) | about 2 years ago | (#41734047)

But that's not why Sweden's being so tough on him in prison. Authorities believe he may have played a role in the hacking of Logica, a Swedish technology company with ties to the country's tax authorities.

What does it matter if there was another crime? Of course he should be tried and prosecuted if he committed a crime, but to give someone solitary confinement before he's even been charged for a non-violent crime seems completely excessive. If your justice system has people leaving it more dangerous and damaged when they came in, you are doing it wrong.

I suppose that not every country has an innocent until guilty system though, is this usual in Sweden?

Re:Exessive (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734097)

Thank god he's doing ok without his _favorite_ tabloid.

But Kristina says that her son is filling his time watching television and reading books, since the one newspaper he’s given access to is a tabloid that he refuses to buy. “It’s not exactly his favorite,” Kristina says. Overall though, Gottfrid appears to be coping well.

Re:Exessive (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734297)

He is probably not coping to well because of the abstinence issues. But he has as all jailed subjects access to full medical services 100% free of charge. He doesn't even need to pay any standard fees.

IMHE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734061)

In my experience, solitary was only used for dangerous or troublesome prisoners (where troublesome means doing anything apart from what the guards say so don't be a smartarse. Guards generally don't give a shit why you're in jail and are just looking for an uncomplicated day), suicide risks, initiation into the system (so you know what to expect if you step out of line), or for protection. Solitary is expensive so prison management don't like to over-use it.

Unless it's for protection, two months is an extraordinary amount of time to be there, though. For all of the other reasons for being in solitary, people usually buckle under and play the game fairly quickly so they can get back out into general.

Re:IMHE (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734207)

23 hours a day, in a cell by yourself - but with tv, visitors, reading materials, and an hour outside to exercise and get some fresh air... sounds like a pretty standard prison accommodation, except he gets a private cell. (Which, incidentally, is far better than being fresh ass-meat for a prison gang.)

"Solitary confinement" would suggest that he's not allowed contact with anybody but prison staff, which is demonstrably false because the prisoner's mother reports that she knows exactly where he is, sees him regularly, and that he's doing well - healthy and in good spirits. So, he's in a private cell, he gets an hour of exercise a day (pretty standard), and he has access to reading materials, and visitors. That's NOT solitary confinement.

The title of this article would be much better as, "Pirate Bay Founder wants pen pals while he's relaxing in a private cell."

Re:IMHE (1)

JudgeFurious (455868) | about 2 years ago | (#41734295)

Exactly. This is being portrayed as some "Cool Hand Luke" scenario where he gets a night in the box "cause that's how he wants it". When you're in prison not getting to mix with other prisoners is a feature, not a problem.

Re:IMHE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734689)

IMHE (which is for only one institution) it was standard to be out of the cells from breakfast time until about 4 or 5pm. The prisoners all had work to do during the day, mostly to keep them occupied but meal prep and the laundry are useful and cost-saving. Solitary is no picnic and (as I said before) it's expensive.

Solitary confinement (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734109)

One possible reason, they're trying to weaken his resolve to get some information out of him, and or he is combative and the prison wants a compliant prisoner.

The Library of Alexandria (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734147)

Torrents are the modern day The Library of Alexandria.

By law, every book and scroll was copied.

It was critical for the development of civilization.

A golden age lasted until the christians and muslims destroyed it.

Don't let the plutocrats destroy our library!

Re:The Library of Alexandria (1)

jjjiii (2758399) | about 2 years ago | (#41734281)

I actually feel pretty religious about file sharing, and the internet in general. Like, besides friends and family, do I love anything more?

Assange right not to trust them (4, Insightful)

Dan667 (564390) | about 2 years ago | (#41734173)

hard to believe anything they say after watching how the swedish government acts.

Re:Assange right not to trust them (1)

sconeu (64226) | about 2 years ago | (#41734471)

And now, Julian Assange's desire *NOT* to be extradited to Sweden begins to make a bit more sense...

Wow (1)

shemyazaz (1494359) | about 2 years ago | (#41734193)

Am I the only one who finds it horrific to use intense psychological tactics like this in such a case? What sort of permanent damage might be caused by long term isolation like this? For what purpose? Is there some loss of life or other high impact event they hope to prevent by sweating information out of this guy? Geez.

Sweden, the USA's 51'st state. (1)

Lumpy (12016) | about 2 years ago | (#41734199)

Glad to see your government is doing what it is told. Good dog. Sit, stay.

Honestly everyone there should be up in arms angry as to how they are handling this. Why are you people doing my country's bidding?

I wonder if he will succumb to ... (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734215)

... Stockholm Syndrome.

Not excessive, solitary confinement is standard (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734247)

Solitary confinement isn't same as in US prisons. First of all he isn't in a prison where it would be strange if he was held in solitary confinement. Everyone who gets 'häktad' is held in solitary confinement or the "red" ward until the prosecutor says otherwise or he is officially charged (i.e. "förundersökningssekretess" is released).

I've been myself confined in solitary for 2 months, where 2 weeks were voluntary. It's good times and way better than sharing a cell with some douche bags and being able to relax because the psycho in your cell is about to get a psychosis and can't take being locked in.

In solitary confinement you get bed, PRIVACY, tv (if officially charged, or prosecutor allows i.e. after giving your sworn statement), table, toilet, water, foodstuff, books and library visit, paper and pen, access to phone (with permission of prosecutor), training room, shower, and so on. It's not the american "solitary confinement" nor is it to punish you, it's way more costly, and they try to put you into "GREEN" ward asap. After that you'll be sent to prison where there is place for you, and if you are unlucky, you get to be 3 or more in one cell.

There is a different type of solitary confinement that I doubt Gottfried is put in, and they usually only exist in prisons and people dangerous to themselves.

BTW, I never been to prison. Just accused of crap. Gottfried should be happy he is put in "häkte" because when he goes to prison he'll love the solitary confinement benefits. Only negative is of course that you only get to meet the wardens and a few people the prosecutor wetted before letting them see you (and they can be friends not necessarily family).

Re:Not excessive, solitary confinement is standard (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734623)

Here are some pictures from the solitary confinement room he is in:

http://www.kriminalvarden.se/upload/bilder/pressbilder/Bostadsrum_hakte.JPG

The other rooms are allowed to be accessed during the day when you are in the "GREEN" ward and mingle with the other jailed people. I bet he is feeling way better than when he was jailed in Cambodia.

http://www.kriminalvarden.se/sv/Medier/Pressbilder/Haktet-Sollentuna/

not surprised. (4, Interesting)

wierd_w (1375923) | about 2 years ago | (#41734299)

It isn't that hard to see the reason is pure vindictiveness on the part of (monied) rights holders, exercising their purchased cronies in world government.

If you followed the press releases surrounding the pirate bay, and bothered to read their "legal threats" page before they were busted, you would know that the founders of the pirate bay frequently and bluntly told the large media companies to go fuck themselves with collapsable metal batons. (And even gave suggestions about which ones were of superior quality.)

[No seriously. They really did.]

This tidbit was alluded to discreetly by various media groups covering the trial, since their peers had made open complaints to the court about the group's lack of tact and seeming lack of seriousness, demanding harsher punishments. (Essentially, they didn't like being told to go fuck themselves, and wanted the court system to use 'harsher' punishments, because they were butt-hurt over it, illistrating their own lack of professionalism in the matter.)

The outright illegal raid on PB servers, followed by the dubious cambodian extradition to sweden, and the endless trail of clearly damning evidence of government corruption in the case pretty clearly sums it up.

Do I think the guy is a hero? Certainly not. Is he getting unfairly punished in proportion to his crimes? Oh yes, certainly. Is it due to government corruption? The evidence is pretty damning...

What is he really guilty of that they want to punish him so severely?

He threatened their hegemony, and was shamelessly unafrad of him. They can't stand that, and want to use him as a poster child to instill fear in people that would be like him, and flaunt their authority.

More than anything, I'd say he is a political prisoner, on par with what the russians do routinely.

TOO BAD HIS CRIME WAS NOT THEFT !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734355)

He'd gotten a 100 SK fine and a slap on the wrist !! Stupid punk had to go and infringe copyright !! What a dumbass !! Moral: if you want to steal, steal real, tangible stuff !!

Progress (1)

WilyCoder (736280) | about 2 years ago | (#41734389)

It's like people invent computers and then decide to throw out justice in the process...

Cages | Expediting Evolution (1)

Penurious Penguin (2687307) | about 2 years ago | (#41734393)

The act of caging any individual without a high probability of recidivism, is essentially spite. It is a form of archaic, wanton penalization probably not even presumed to have any preventive or rehabilitative effect past its end. More practical would be an imposed condition for a ruled duration that would make repeating the crime wildly unlikely or impossible -- preferably while improving rather than weakening the subject. A cage is an efficient method of preventing people from doing anything that cannot be done in a cage with the limited resources at hand. Under typical conditions beyond basic toiletries and tattered books (if they are so lucky), such resources are their own forms and little more, thus leaving violence, idleness and anticipation of food as the majority of very few options. Solitary confinement might actually be more widely practiced for the betterment of society, but only for the violent or voluntary. Otherwise, it makes little sense unless one thinks like a criminal their self.

I have never observed any value (beyond monetary) in caging anyone who poses no imminent threat to themselves or society. However, as displayed by the practice, it is not ethics that guide such tyrannical policies; it is often pettiness, laziness, or profit. The cage is the gangrene that handicaps society -- by placing problems out of sight and out of mind, sweeping them under the carpet to fester and haunt us any time but now. But it haunts us now despite.

Of course the answer to this comes from the very fiends who cultivate this gangrenous rot. In the US especially, prison-labor is on the rise like never before. Next time you eat your potatoes, you might ponder what crime the man who harvested them committed.

Assange's reluctance (4, Insightful)

revscat (35618) | about 2 years ago | (#41734395)

And this is exactly the reason why Julian Assange is so (wisely) set against being extradited to Sweden.

Re:Assange's reluctance (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734521)

And this is exactly the reason why Julian Assange is so (wisely) set against being extradited to Sweden.

Right, to avoid due process. That doesn't make him a hero.

Due process has already been avoided (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734643)

Due process has already been avoided. By the government trying to get him extradited.

Solitary Confinement is a good thing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734447)

I've spent time in jail. Maybe Swedish jail is different (ie, instead of blacks and hispanics, they have muslims) but solitary confinement is preferable to the alternative. Because the alternative is sucking dick and hanging out with the kind of people that are in jail.

Dial it down a notch, MAFIAA, will you? (3, Insightful)

blind biker (1066130) | about 2 years ago | (#41734461)

I could never imagine how fast will the "content industry" bring upon us a totalitarian, corporatist dystopia. The US is pushing for extradition of people who engaged in copying - not violent attacks, not murder, not kidnapping, not arms or drugs dealing, no, nothing but fucking COPYING copyrighted content.

The only thing more alarming is the great majority of sheeple, I mean people, watching all this and going "oh well, I guess Bono's got to buy food, too". Pathetic.

maybe... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41734529)

maybe solitary is a bit much, but we do not know the circumstances. all we have is a moms word. i am not saying shes a liar, but if their police are like our police....

The Lesson (3, Interesting)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 2 years ago | (#41734539)

Don't fuck with big corporations.

You get thrown in jail and the key thrown away.

The upside-down world: a co-founder of Pirate Bay is in solitary, but the guys who stole $18 trillion in the 2007-08 economic collapse scam are running around free and using their cash to influence the US election.

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