From Pirate Coelho Central

This week we are going to have the final veredict on the Pirate Bay, the website that allows sharing contents in internet. Yesterday I was browsing internet on pirates, and this is what I found out:

“Pirates have never been quite who we think they are. In the “golden age of piracy” – from 1650 to 1730 – the idea of the pirate as the senseless, savage thief that lingers today was created by the British government in a great propaganda-heave. Many ordinary people believed it was false: pirates were often rescued from the gallows by supportive crowds. Why? What did they see that we can’t? In his book Villains of All nations, the historian Marcus Rediker pores through the evidence to find out. If you became a merchant or navy sailor then – plucked from the docks of London’s East End, young and hungry – you ended up in a floating wooden Hell. You worked all hours on a cramped, half-starved ship, and if you slacked off for a second, the all-powerful captain would whip you with the Cat O’ Nine Tails. If you slacked consistently, you could be thrown overboard. And at the end of months or years of this, you were often cheated of your wages.

Pirates were the first people to rebel against this world. They mutinied against their tyrannical captains – and created a different way of working on the seas. Once they had a ship, the pirates elected their captains, and made all their decisions collectively. They shared their bounty out in what Rediker calls “one of the most egalitarian plans for the disposition of resources to be found anywhere in the eighteenth century.” They even took in escaped African slaves and lived with them as equals. The pirates showed “quite clearly – and subversively – that ships did not have to be run in the brutal and oppressive ways of the merchant service and the Royal navy.”

The Pirate Coelho supports Pirate Bay!!!



  1. Keith says:

    Four guys get a year in prison, hit with a multi-million dollar fine.

    I get a sense of David and Goliath here, or maybe a better analogy would be the playground bully.

    The entertainments industry has shot itself in the foot, a massive own goal. All they have done is exposed their naked greed for all the world to see.

    I trawled through the postings on the BBC news site. After a while it became boringly repetitive, the entertainments industry with only a handful of exceptions, was slammed. They do not have public support.

    Too often I am forced to watch a video clip on a DVD that compares file swapping, illicit disc copy with theft. No it is not theft. Theft is to take something which deprives the owner of its use. For example, if my laptop is stolen, I am deprived of its use, I cannot write and post these comments. On the other hand, if I use my laptop to copy a disc that I have bought and pass it to a friend who has never heard of the artist, who has lost out? Not me, as I still have my original disc; not the artist, who was unheard of, but now one more person is aware of their work.

    Not a hypothetical example. I did just that with an album by Mechanical Bride. I passed a copy to a friend, who I thought would like the music. I was correct, my friend then asked could I buy for him the original album, which I did.

    The entertainments industry likes to bandy around figures. For every CD sold, one is copied; for every DVD sold, twenty are copied. These figures are plucked out of thin air, and they make the false assumption that every copy translates as missed sales.

    Let us assume for every five originals there are five copies. No way does this mean there are five lost sales.

    The entertainments industry has only itself to blame. If you peddle overpriced crap, you expect to get into difficulty.

    The peak of the music industry was in the 1960s, nearly half a century ago. Then you had good music, it is now seen as some mythical heyday. Now, with one or two exceptions, we have dross, banal pop music. This is seen in the low sales figures required to hit the number one spot compared with the 1960s.

    In the 1960s there was a large number of independent record labels, where the producers had a love of music. How many new groups, as the Beatles had, have a producer like George Martin working with them? Bands would work the clubs, have some talent, their music passed by word of mouth, and by copying their albums.

    The business is now dominated by a handful of conglomerates. To them it is a product. The next big hit, then onto the next big hit. Every hit, followed by clones.

    The same in publishing. Gone the small publishers who cared about their writers, who cared about literature. If the names have survived at all, it is as an imprint of a large conglomerate. Like the music industry it is about the next blockbuster backed by a massive advertising campaign.

    The classical music scene has all but disappeared.

    The exception has been Naxos. Naxos found unknown artists, who nevertheless were good, linked them with state-of-the-art recording equipment and turned out a CD at four pounds sterling. Cheap at the time, cheaper than what the major labels were churning out to milk some money out of their badly recorded back catalogue.

    At first, people bought the Naxos label, thinking, I do not know that symphony, or composer but I’ll give it a try. They were pleasantly surprised.

    Naxos then went one step further, they would over a period of time, record all of a composer’s repertoire, something the major labels were not doing.

    As a result, Naxos now dominates the market.

    The entertainments industry bleats about the artists losing revenue, never about Big Business losing revenue, when it is Big Business that gets the lions share of the income not the artist.

    The Court in Sweden has awarded the record labels, who claim to have lost out, a massive award of 30 million kroners in compensation. The founders of Pirate Bay have said can’t pay, won’t pay, but even if they could pay did pay, how much of that award would the record companies divvy out to their artists? We all know the answer, not a penny.

    I ‘file share books’, I pass them on for others to read, I even leave them in public places for strangers to pick up. Will I be prosecuted, thrown in gaol for this heinous crime, will BookCrossing be raided by the police at the instigation of the Book Publishers Association for facilitating this heinous crime of ‘file sharing books’, will the founders of BookCrossing be put on trial in a political show trial, found guilty and incarcerated for a year?

    The action against the founders of Pirate Bay has not even succeeded in shutting down Pirate Bay, the servers, like those of Indymedia UK, are hosted around the world.

    We should never forget that the Spanish Armada was defeated by pirates like Sir Francis Drake, or privateers as they liked to be called.

    The conclusion of the case in Sweden coincides with ever more Draconian legislation being passed in the UK, where the state spies on its citizens, far exceeding the worst excesses of Nineteen Eighty-Four or Stalinist Russia.

    I thought we defeated totalitarianism when the old Soviet Union collapsed. We did not see the collapse to see it replaced by corporate totalitarianism.

    We can though hit back. Communism collapsed when the people rebelled in peaceful revolution. Corporate totalitarianism will collapse too.

    We should boycott the companies that tried to shut down the Pirate Bay.

    Have they not heard of the McLibel trial?

    We are seeing an industry in its final death throes lashing out. An industry that alienates its customers has no future.

  2. Pink Panther says:

    Let’s start educating the children first so that they don’t fall into the same trap as we have and can think freely with an independent mind.
    As for right, left, centre, north, south, east, west,….well we all know it is an illusion depending on where you stand.
    It is all about saving our souls.

  3. Petra Panther says:

    Dear Mr. Coelho,

    can you really support people, who have been supported by a right wing extremist?

    Best regards
    Petra Panther, Berlin

  4. Keith says:

    I heard on the lunchtime news today that those behind Pirate Bay had been found guilty and hit with hefty fines.

    I have to admit, I had never heard of Pirate Bay until I read of it on Paulo’s blog. Sounds like a good idea and what a pity I thought my ship had not visited to see what treasures were to be had.

    As Paulo shows in The Winner Stands Alone, the film and fashion industry is a greed driven business. To which I would add the rest of the entertainment business, which includes the music business and sport.

    Who is ripping off who when on sale is a shirt or blouse or pair of jeans or trainers that costs $70 in the shops and one dollar is the factory gate price?

    Go back twenty years and the music business was griping about audio cassettes, presumably before that the sale of reel-to-reel tapes. They equated every cassette sold with a lost album sale.

    Their logic was seriously flawed. No way was these people going to go out and buy their offerings, thus no sales were lost. I see nothing wrong with friends passing around their music.

    There was a time when a few CDs had copy protection. They did not meet the Red Book standard for a Compact Disc, with the net result they would often not play. Strictly speaking they were not CDs as they did not meet the standard for CDs.

    If I went away on vacation, I would take my personal CD player with me and a handful of favourite CDs. I took copies, which I then gave away before returning home. More people were introduced to music they were previously unaware of.

    Copy protection and regional encoding on DVDs is another pain in the neck with DVDs.

    Download AnyDVD or DVD43. AnyDVD has the advantage that it strips out not only regional encoding, but also the annoying trailers and adverts.

    The industry is only interested in the next big block buster. Look around at the multiplex-multiscreen cinemas, at any one time they are all showing the same films. Where is the choice?

    What the industry fails to understand is that their products are overhyped and overpriced.

    I was given the latest James Bond film Quantum of Solace months before it was officially released. Having watched it I would not part with good money to buy it for the simple reason it is a load of rubbish, a poor copy of the Bourne trilogy. In many ways a pity as the new James Bond is one of the best. In turn, I gave away my copy.

    There are good films, but they lack the distribution. Try Black Gold or Favela Rising, both of which I saw at various times at the BeyondTV film Festival, and then went on to buy. Cannes and all its glitz and glamour and pretensions Beyond TV is not. [see BeyondTV International Film Festival 2007]

    If I want a film or album, I pick it up from a good second-hand record shop. Ben’s Records in Guildford is a favourite place.

    For books, there are plenty of secondhand bookshops around, though sadly nowhere near as many as there used to be.

    Pirate Coelho is not the only place to find books. The book on sustainable energy is Sustainable Energy by David MacKay, Professor of Natural Philosophy in the Department of Physics at the University of Cambridge. The book is available for download as a pdf file, plus there are lecture notes and a mp3 file of a lecture.

    What will the industry try next, to close down all the secondhand bookshops and record shops?

    This is not as fanciful as it sounds, look at the biocide industry which has done its best to stop farmers from saving seeds for the next harvest, something Man has done ever since he learnt how to walk. One reaction to this is highly successful seed swaps. [see Seedy Sunday Brighton 2008]

    Corporate greed, monculture, lack of choice versus diversity and choice.

  5. THELMA says:

    Friday, 17 April 2009
    Pirate Bay team are found guilty!!!!

    I have just found it in the MSN. The whole article is there..

  6. Robert says:

    Sweden is not going in the right direction. We have just enforced a law which makes it legal for private corporations to gather (digital) information on it’s citizens if they are suspecting that people are violating copyrighted material. It is called IPRED.

    It seems like the Internet is becoming less vibrant and free as we speak.

  7. Marie-Christine says:

    Pirates are just a reflection of the world we live in.
    Who are the real pirates? the big sharks.
    Free Internet – we have to watch that one too – It is all in our hands.

  8. nikamarie says:

    Oh my they got 1yr prison $3.6M in fines. Thats CRAAAZZZYYY!

  9. kealan says:

    Well the court ruled and the four Piratebay boy’s are going to prison for a year and have to pay a little over €2million to the damaged parties. They will now rule on the servers used to run the torrent site. I suggest moving to another site if the pirate bay is taken over due to the tracking of information…but I hope this will not happen.

  10. Henke says:

    Mr Coelho – I am so happy to see that you were prepared to speak out on the issue of the Pirate Bay-trial.

    As you are no doubt aware of, the four people on trial were today convicted – 1 years imprisonment each and 30 million swedish kronors in damages.

    I live in Sweden, and I have been following this trial. I have mixed feelings about this – of course the authors and artists needs to get payed for their work – but does this allow the industry to act the way it has done?

    Over 1 million people in Sweden has been sharing files – in a country of 9 million people, that’s a substatial part. The industry needs to embrace the technical developments and be friends with the technology instead of making an entire generation their enemies.

    Where is the logic in taking your customers to trial? Yes – there are other laws being enforced in Sweden now that makes it legal for companies to obtain IP-adresses from any indvidual suspected of sharing files and take them to court. Not the police – the companies are allowed to do this!

    What I ask of you mr Coelho – is that when the The Pirate Bay-case returns to court – because it WILL be overruled – please offer your testimony for the defence again! It would be very important to make thew court aware of the fact that very, very successful authors actually might want to embrace the technology and the possibilities of the Internet instead of taking young people – their potential readers – to court!

    Frankly I see this verdict as a threat to freedoom of speach in my country.

    And – yes – I do love your books very much!

    /Henke from Sweden

  11. Paulo, há mais de 10 anos, com o livro O Monte Cinco, vc discutiu esse tema através do medo do sacerdote com a disseminação da escrita BIBLOS. E que no entender dele, os deuses não estavam contentes com essa invenção justamente pela possibilidade de que qualquer pessoa poderia ter acesso à rituais, informações das riquezas de um povo, enviar planos de guerra, etc. Ou seja, medo de que o poder não estivesse mais concentrado nas mãos de poucos – o que é uma tolice total, pois continuamos assim até hoje.
    Porém o medo se repete. O que, agora, é criado e aceito, rende frutos financeiros e consequentemente influencia e dá determinado poder. E quem atingiu esse determinado poder não quer perdê-lo.

    Vc foi notícia em vários sites no Brasil hoje por divulgar em seu blog seu posicionamento. Considerado rebelde pela mídia.

    Beijos, com amor.

  12. Cíntia says:

    well as most people (i hope) know, when someone who doesn´t have a strong mind feels threatened about something or someone, they tend to despise it, many times inventing false things about it. I guess that´s what happened with the english navy making bad propaganda against the pirates, portrating them as criminals and drunks.

    Piracy nowadays provides us with culture bringing us music, films, etc. at a low or no cost.

    i don´t see piracy as a bad thing and i certanly don´t think that the record labels, the movie studios and so on are not making money nowadays.

    I´m with you Paulo, and I think is great you´re putting your oppinion about this out there.

    um grande abraço,


  13. Ross Martin says:

    In all the books I have read regarding Pirates-they are mirrored as inadequate,in that they arer unable to run their own lives.or make decisions or plan their future. Their main characteristics are selfishness and greed-which usually go hand in hand with incompetence.
    Pirates’ greastest love would have been freedom-to go whither,whenever, restricted only by the prevailing wind.We can all identify with those ideals,but these are the mantra of the irresponsible-seekers of fame.
    Admittedly,the defeat of the Spanish Armada was due in part to the scurrilous tactics of converted pirates in the Royal Navy only they would have thought up the idea of fire ships etc.
    I dont blame the Navy for their cruel regimes- how else could you engage individuals to join your ship on a journey into the unknown,facing dangers,dungeons,dragons,sharks et al,living with all manner of human life forms,with sickness a daily pastime-unless you lied to them and then once aboard put them in chains auntil you were well out to sea? The miracle is that men and women survived.
    We all love a masked Ball-but Pirates- though revered for their courage-have no honour and cannot be trusted.

  14. THELMA says:

    Verdicts and … Court’s decisions!!
    Whatever is profitable for the System, this would be the outcome.

  15. Mari says:

    todos los conceptos u opiniones hacerca de piratas para unos malos para otros aportadores de lo posible a lo imposible y no nos hemos puesto a pensar que opinan ellos; hay una razon para todo ,una justificacion de todo ..Solo pensemos las fotos acaso no creen que siempre hemos querido tener aquella maravilla y si lo tomamos ya se convierte en una pirateria?todos en realidad de alguna forma lo somos .

  16. Johnni says:

    Hey Paulo

    Just read about you on torrentfreak and I am so impressed that I will go buy your book (the alchemist) even though I’ll probably never get around to read it. – never manage to find the time to read a book :o). But after your statement, and your offer to testify in favor of the bay, I will find pried in owning it.

    Pardon my poor english, and greetings from denmark.


  17. Maggie says:

    Thank you for the information and the link to Pirate Bay. Although I’ve read the Alchemist, I wanted to read it again. It’s always out at the local library and I would have had to wait weeks to reread it.

    Thank you!

  18. nagualero says:

    BUY IF YOU CAN, STEAL IF YOU MUST… either way artists will survive if they are creative…

  19. Irina Black says:

    “The ninth wave.”They do things differently,as nobody has done before.They can say “no” for many reasons.They overpay “the price” or underpay.It can be either an ascent or a fall.But who doesn’t risk doesn’t drink champagne.

  20. kealan says:

    If you download something and choose to use it once or twice fine, but if you use it every day buy it for real!

  21. Savita Vega says:

    Pirate Bay? Never heard of it…until now. I took a peek, just browsing at random, and one of the first things I noticed is that, among the many videos, music CD’s, games, and books of fiction, there were also quite a few academic papers and articles on various subjects. These are often available online, but at a price. You either have to pay for the item itself in order to read it – only the abstract is viewable prior to payment – or, in some cases, you have to subscribe to the service that is holding the item.

    I have to admit that I have mixed feeling about piracy. I think one should pay for books or music if they can afford to do so. Those who write the books and make the music deserve to be paid, just as anyone else doing a job or performing a service. And games, I feel even more strongly about, perhaps because I do not see them as “essential” in any manner. They’re just games – fun and entertainment. Television shows – the same. They have no value, either to the individual or to the public as a whole, beyond the entertainment they provide. I see nothing wrong with those who produce them demanding a fair market price for these items, which, in essence, are “luxury items,” like jewelry or furs or expensive clothes. We may want them, but we do not NEED them.

    Information is another matter all together. Anything that stops the flow of information in a culture is, I think, at least borderline criminal, if not all out tyranny. I would say that certain books fall into this category – certain non-fiction books. All academic papers and articles fall into this category, certainly historical texts written long ago, and which form the basis of our modern fields of study. What gives someone the right to “possess” and sell certain documents to begin with, when the authors of those documents have been dead for hundreds of years? The money that they make from these sales does not go to heirs; it goes into the pockets of those who claim this right of possession. That is criminal – that is thievery! Such information belongs to a culture, to a people, to the whole human race. It is our birthright, regardless of income, to have access to that information – equal access. What should be made “illegal” is not the so-called piracy, but the false “claims of ownership.”

    As for the academicians and experts in certain fields that are writing and publishing their work today, I do understand that they, just like writers and musicians, deserve to be paid. But they are paid! They are paid for their work in a different way – they work at universities and research institutions. They teach, and this is how they are paid. If they do not produce publishable work, they cannot hold a teaching position – the two are integral. Indeed, they should be paid to teach, but the information that they produce – that, I feel, should be given forth freely, to all who are interested. The “selling of ideas” simply strikes me as somehow fundamentally perverse – wrong, criminal.

    So, this brings me back to the subject of books such as those written by our dear Paulo – works of fiction. Fiction is more than mere “entertainment” (unlike video games or TV shows) – it is art (at least in most cases). And I won’t even get into that – the question of which books are “worthy” to be called “literature.” I’ll just say that these fall somewhere in the intermediate category – between “entertainment” (which should be paid) and “information” (which should be free) – and so, in terms of “piracy” and the right to freely distribute these works without remuneration to the authors, I would say that they lie in a somewhat gray area, a fuzzy region where it is difficult to draw clear lines between what is right and what is wrong.

    So, again, I would say: pay for them if you can, but if you truly can’t afford to buy the book, or if it otherwise is somehow not available to you, then by all means, be thankful for sites like Pirate Bay.

    And thank you, Paulo, for the interesting history (the real history) of Pirates. The older I get, the more I realize that the large majority of what I was taught in history class as a child, was a lie. The history of the United States, as we learn it in school – all lies, all fabrications produces to evoke a certain effect. The history that we learn of other nations – also lies, intended to make our own nation look like the only nation that is good and right and just. The history that we learn of the Native Americans who were here before us – also lies intended to make it look as though they were not capable or worthy of owning this land that is rightfully their. The history of African Americans in their plight – all the way from slavery to the modern era – again, lies, meant to cover up and lessen the wrongs done by their oppressors and those in power. The history that we are taught about our “great national heroes” – Lincoln, Washington, Jefferson – nothing but a series of lies and sly omissions. In school, I learned of pirates. Around here, many are still digging for the treasures supposedly buried by Jean Lafitte. But what we were taught was only how barbarous, how merciless and cruel and greedy they were. But I am not surprised to learn that those too were lies.

    Thank you!

  22. Cristina says:

    Dear Paulo,
    I agree with you; history is full of false things.
    I’ve always been “quite rebel” towards principles I felt wrong.
    But nowadays, when I read about captains of ships kidnapped and threaten of death, I can’t help but thinking about their families, and friends.
    They are workers like other workers, and thy earn their wages.
    They are stolen or kidnapped by other people who say that their acting for “divine justice”, so that they can feel right when they cut other people’s throat, cause their victims think in a different way.
    So who is the capitain of the Bounty and who’s Mr Fletcher in this situation?
    I support people who act for justice, but not those who act for violence.
    Have a nice day.
    Greetings and supportings for our “Pilgrim-Pirate” Paul from Austria.

  23. Creo que eso es lo facil , tomar lo que no es tuyo y con la justificada razon de la injusticia, pero creo que No.
    Realmente lo que es apasionante en esta vida, es la lucha por tu lugar y por tu obra, de forma legal y por merito propio, lo demas son atajos que no conducen a nada y por los cuales los seres humanos solo llegan a ser mas y mas perversos.
    Un saludo querido Pablo.

  24. Marie-Christine says:

    Surprisingly enough, you’ve got my vote. Sail away, sail away, sail away.
    (The Phantom Pirate)~~~~~~~~~ooooooo~~~~~~~~~

  25. orly says:

    there r mmmany pirates today who steal and copy books – cd- dvd- and more,, and its i legal but we cant do tomuch about it,
    we stil dont have a society which is all pure!!! and i am not sure there is any way we can control it,
    may be one day,, may be..?

  26. Dear Paulo,

    It depends on how much you own.

    Once you have good amount of money, and if you afford to buy legal stuffs (books, cds, writings, hmovies …) it is good not to do piracy. or become pirate.

    But wait a moment, Did I just said that ?

    Come on guys, even god does not care about piracy at all. For the well being of the crew, captain pirates always have to think for not smaller self benefits but for the larger society, larger community of his followers and for greater cause.

    “We all are born pirates, due to some difficult times and situations, we are bound to choose a different path and show to world that, we are not.”
    (-Pirate Santosh Kalwar)

    God bless you all !

  27. Jenovia says:


    I’m an American living in Tunis, Tunisia and books in english are not always readily available.

    Bisous Paulo!!!

  28. More and more I find that whatever mass explanation that is given to things, is a lie…

    Usually the opposite is true…

    Some one, some people, are always trying to distort and hide the truth.

    It is up to us to look into things and reveal the truth.

    Thank you Paulo!


  29. kealan says:

    Piracy for a better education…I totally back the Pirates, because it has helped me to gather a lot of information that would once have taken me decades to find. At your fingertips there are movies and songs. Now the Pirate Bay are bringing forth a pay service that won’t keep your information on any computer, so the big bad service providers can’t catch the downloader any more, and because you are paying (if you want to) it is not the end user who will be responsible it is the provider. The only thing I must disagree with is that the torrent website does not really check all of the torrents leading to some minimal viruses and extreme movies of a violent and sexual nature, which above all is totally illegal outside the realm of illegal downloads! It also opens the door for possible exploitation of women, children and young men. But that is another kettle of fish…

  30. paula says:

    The Virgin Pirate backs Pirate Coelho and Pirate Bay!!!

  31. Alexandra says:

    What can I say,I am on your side.I took the chapters of you latest book from your page,truth is in our country it was not published yet.
    So,how could I be ever against?But,is the decision of each person,I took with you accept,not steal the book.