Mason, Matt. The Pirate's Dilemma How Youth Culture is Reinventing Capitalism. New York: Free Press, 2008.
After presenting the reader through a plethora of examples of how much our culture is dependent on piracy, Mason comes to the conclusion that we have reached "the pirate's dilemma." Much like the prisoner's dilemma in game theory (here the two prisoners are represented by individuals and companies trying to sell their products), the players will have to choose between cooperation with the pirates or fighting them. At this point if one player decides to join in with the pirates by competing and changing their business model, the other will lose. If they both join the pirates, then competition will be even tougher, but they will have a chance at remaining in the market, which they wouldn't if they choose not to participate and fight the pirates with laws. As an example of this model, Microsoft is Player A and decides to fight piracy and Player B is Linux who decides to cooperate with pirates through open source. Player B is ultimately the winner, their prize being innovation, competition, while Player A will remain inefficient and will lose profits.
Though Mason's ideas are intriguing, I think that he is just rehashing the general argument for open source, which most of his book supports through examples. I believe Chapter Two of this book will be most useful for my paper. Titled "The Tao of Pirates: Sea Forts, Patent Trolls, and Why we Need Piracy," Mason explains the use of Sealand as an autonomous state outside the jurisdiction of the UK and how it is the home of the "Royal Family of Sealand's" pirate radio station and the data sanctuary of HavenCo. The Pirate Bay recently tried to purchase Sealand after a damaging fire for 500,000 Euro to house their servers, but their plans were thwarted by the trial. Mason gives some brief information on the Pirate Party. In this chapter he also outlines the "3 habits of highly effective pirates" and encourages youth to look outside of the market, create a vehicle, and to harness their audience. What is most interesting about Mason's book is that he is giving directions on how to harness the power the privacy, which is already forward thinking and more evidence that change is inevitable.
TankGirl. "Pirate leader Falkvinge: 'Our enemy has no intellectual capital to bring to the battle'.” P2P Consortium Interview. 12 January 2008. 20 July 2009.
P2P Consortium member going by the avatar of TankGirl, interviews Rickard Falkvinge, chairman of the Swedish Pirate Party. At the point of this interview, the Pirate Party has yet to gain a seat in the EU Parliament, but many of his responses predict the Party's later success. The questions are consistent with the Pirate Party's primary issues including the filesharing debate, privacy issues, and the spread of IPR revolution across Europe. In the first question, TankGirl mentions the adoption of the PP's principles by the Moderate Party and whether Falkvinge thinks that this is productive. He agrees that it is productive in applying pressure to larger parties, but he explains that the MP is "technophobically luddite" and does not understand the issues as well as he would like them to. The second question is about whether Falkvinge's vision of the IPR revolution, why is has its beginnings in Sweden, and will it eventually infect other countries in Europe and the world? Falkvinge explains that file-sharing issues seem to be strongest in Sweden today, which might be because they were slightly ahead in high-speed broadband access. He no longer gets asked questions about monetary compensation of artists in Sweden, meaning that they already understand that the debate goes beyond that. He is hoping that Sweden will set an example in Europe. He is less optimistic about the Pirate Party in the US noting that the party has much less influence on the political system. In response to the third question about privacy and integrity, Falkvinge explains again that file-sharing cannot be stopped, eventually it will be completely anonymous and that cell phone file-sharing would soon be ubiquitous. The last question addresses personal integrity and surveillance being instituted for "anti-terrorism reasons." Falkvinge gives a brief lexical definition of fascism and says to remember that we have brought the cameras into our homes ourselves. The best thing to do against the Big Brother Society is to be constantly vigilant of the government. Turn the eye onto them.
In this interview with P2P Consortium, Falkvinge answers more specific questions about the filesharing debate, most significantly the idea of an impending Big Brother Society that could potentially sweep across Europe. Falkvinge's thoughtful responses have a hint of the revolutionary, something that doesn't come out in his speeches and the Swedish Pirate Party blog.