[pp.int.general] Book by Finnish pirates gets good publicity, sales

Kaj Sotala kaj.sotala at piraattipuolue.fi
Wed Mar 31 22:19:33 CEST 2010

On Monday last week, the book Jokapiraatinoikeus ("every pirate's
right", referring to the Nordic legal doctrine of
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Everyman's_right ) was published in print
as well as a free download. It was written by me and my Piraattipuolue
colleague Ahto Apajalahti, and it discusses issues of filesharing,
commercial copyright and various problems with the current system of
copyright. The contents of the 275-page book pretty much matches the
way I described it in my previous message [1].

Helsingin Sanomat, the biggest newspaper in Finland, ran two stories
about the book. One, titled "Book accuses copyright interest group of
extortion" was published the same day as the book, discussing our
criticism of the way suspected file-sharers have been dealt with.
(Incidentally, the part they wrote the whole article about was only
two pages or so of the whole book.) A full fourteen-paragraph review
written by Member of Parliament Jyrki Kasvi, of Finland's Green party,
was published four days later and was largely positive.

Nelonen, one of the major television channels in Finland mentioned the
book in their evening news on the day of the book's release. As a
result of the book being published, Piraattipuolue chairman Pasi
Palmulehto appeared on a popular television talk show where they
discussed the book and the party. We have given interviews about the
book for two different radio shows and were also invited to hold a
lecture for a course on law and the information society held at the
Helsinki University of Technology. Hufvudstadsbladet, the largest
Swedish-language newspaper in Finland, also published an
eight-paragraph summary of the book the day after the release.

Both the formal reviews and the comments people have made on
discussion forums and blogs have been positive. A prominent Finnish
librarian called the book "a must-read for everyone who wants to
understand more about copyright than just the side the interest groups
present". Several non-pirates have commented that the book makes many
good and interesting points, even if they do not necessarily agree
with all of them.

We don't currently have exact sales figures. However, we do know that
the webstore for Suomalainen kirjakauppa, the largest bookstore chain
in Finland, currently lists it as the #1 seller for non-fiction titles
and the #3 seller for the combined fiction and non-fiction list.
(Unfortunately they haven't stocked it in their physical stores yet,
preferring to first wait and see if it'll get any sales. Hopefully
that should change soon.)

Things are looking nice. :)

[1] http://lists.pirateweb.net/pipermail/pp.international.general/2009-December/005584.html

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