Piracy; Code and Law

Magnus Eriksson
Lund University, Sweden

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Ingår i: On the Move: ACSIS conference 11-13 June Norrköping; Sweden 2013

Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings 95:5, s. 41-46

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Publicerad: 2014-01-17

ISBN: 978-91-7519-563-6

ISSN: 1650-3686 (tryckt), 1650-3740 (online)


This paper traces the history of the struggle between efforts to equate discourse and power and the figure of the pirate that always re-invokes material agencies as it has played out both in cities and inside computers.

Piracy is a struggle between the material accessibility and the legal and normative enclosure of resources. Piracy represents an imagination that transcends the legal and normative boundaries towards the materiality of social exchanges. Planning; on the other hand; is to do exactly the opposite -- to make the legal/normative and the materiality of a space to perfectly coincide. This is not at least evident in regards to urban piracy where uncontrolled growth of cities and use of its resources are in a constant struggle with the top-down perspective of planning and the ordered; calculable; city.

However; even in the computer this struggle is replicated. In order for code to become law; as Lessig famously said; a computer needs to discipline its materiality; which mostly takes place at the production side. But the famous concept of the "analog hole"; that in the end prevents every DRM mechanism to fully function; shows that even running computers; where supposedly code=law; will forever retain the figure of the pirate.


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