The Church of Kopimism, a religion whose central tenet is the free sharing of information, has been formally recognized by the Swedish government.
Kopimists believe all information sharing is "holy" and that the value of information multiplies when it's shared. They hold CTRL+C and CTRL+V, keyboard shortcuts for copying and pasting, to be sacred symbols of their religion. (We're not making this stuff up.)
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According to a press release on the Church's website, Kopimism has been striving to achieve legal recognition in Sweden for more than a year. The church's board chairman, Gustav Nipe, says the Kopimists has tried three times to register with Kammarkollegiet, the Swedish Administrative Services Agency. They were ultimately successful and recognized as a religion just before Christmas of last year.
Formal acknowledgment provides the Church of Kopimism, named for the Swedish word for "copy," with legal protections under that country's law and potential access to government-assisted funding.
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The recognition of the Church of Kopimism is the latest success for Europeans fighting for a free and open Internet. The Pirate Party, formed in Sweden in 2006, aims to reform copyright and patent laws and to protect online access to information. The Pirate Party won over 7% of Swedish votes in 2009's European parliamentary elections, and it has spawned an international movement under the banner "Pirate Parties International."
Not everything has gone smoothly for the Church of Kopimism. Its website buckled under the pressure of sudden international interest. A temporary page is urging people interested in becoming a Kopimist to check back "when the storm is settled."
This story originally published on Mashable here.