The Pirate Party has been taking a very hand on approach so far. Having secured a few seats in the Swedish Parliament and even in the European Parliament, it’s not waiting around and, until it can achieve its objectives through political means, it’s looking at more practical approaches.
The Party made the headlines earlier this year when it announced that it will start providing the Pirate Bay with bandwidth in order to safeguard it from bullying from the big media companies. Now it’s doing the same for the average Swede by launching its own ISP to provide anonymity, privacy and protection from various groups trying to get information on them.
The venture will fittingly be called Pirate ISP and the plans are provide customers with an alternative provider built on the Pirate Party’s principles. The organization will team up with existing ISP and technology company ViaEuropa who will actually operate the service. ViaEuropa also runs the Ipredator service, in partnership with the Pirate Bay, which is aimed at combating the controversial IPRED anti-piracy laws.
Gustav Nipe, who is a member of the Pirate Party, will take over as CEO of the new ISP. He believes there was a definite need for a service like the Pirate ISP and it was this exact need that drove the organization to enter the market. One reason, he believes, is that existing ISPs have become complacent and that the competition will drive them to offer better services. It’s the same philosophy as the one behind Google’s plan to offer fiber-to-home internet connections in the US, albeit with a slightly different goal.
The most obvious reasons behind the Pirate Party’s moves are in providing users with more protection from attacks from various anti-piracy organizations, but also from government interfering. The new ISP will offer complete anonymity and will not release personal information about its users. Pirate ISP will start with a trial period and will be providing internet services to about 100 residents of Lund, Sweden. The plan is to expand the service in the city and eventually around the country. Since the goal is not of becoming a major player in the ISP space but rather to spur competition, Pirate ISP doesn’t need a huge market share to be deemed a success.