Let us Pray: Yea Verily, Filesharing is a Religion. Official.

You've just got to love those crazy Swedes. Liberal, progressive, cool and politically correct. What's not to like? They've excelled themselves this time though. As dedicated filesharers they applied, and succeeded at the third attempt, to register filesharing as a religion.

Welcome to the surreal world of the Swedish Church of Kopimism, a world in which ctrl+c and ctrl+v are sacred symbols (well, not if you're on a Mac), where the sharing of files is a digital eucharist and holy communion. Information is holy and copying, a sacrament--as its constitution explains. It's mission statement (sorry about the corporate speak) sees copying and sharing as an extension of the genetic paradigm incorporated in DNA. It is peppered with wonderfully memorable phrases: code is law, the internet is holy, information, the holiest of holies. There is no bricks and mortar church. The distributed network is the place of worship, or a server...or a web page.

The "inventors" of Kopimism hope that being an official religion (at least in Sweden) will remove the stigma of illegal filesharing and allow members to come out of the closet. How long before the word Kopiphobia enters the language?

I'm not entirely sure if these guys are serious or just attempting to extract the water from my bladder but at least they brightened up a dreary January day. As a unreconstructed, unwashed unbeliever I feel it only decent to remind them there is peril in numbers. If my neighbour worships a pink Elephant at the bottom of their garden in the privacy of their own home, that's harmless; but once two or three are gathered in its name dogma ensues, followed by burning of heretics and the torturing of apostates. Seriously, how long before the Church of Kopimism has its own inevitable Flying Spaghetti Monster schism? Fatwas beckon.


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With thanks to Fremantle Counselling to keep FSM editors sane.