Swedish cops regret hardline on pirates -

Swedish coppers' new found hard-line against software piracy is about to backfire on them.

Inspector Knacker of the Swedish Yard has been rushing around the country looking for software pirates to arrest lately and earning a round of applause from the entertainment business.

The problem is that if it wants to capture one of the biggest software pirates in the country it would have to arrest itself.

The coppers have been building a national "shoe database" lately. Obviously it does not track shoes's  criminal records, that was a mistake in our Google translator which we have included for comic effect.

It tracks what type of footprint each shoe makes, so that when they go to a crime scene they can tell what the crook was wearing and if he or she was particularly fashionable.

This would be fine, but the coppers populated their shoe database by downloading pictures from websites online..

The problem is that under Swedish law that is illegal. But the coppers are saying that the law lets them ignore copyright in solving crimes. It seems they are allowed to be serial pirates if they are trying to finger the collar of a crook.

But legal experts say that is only true if the piracy was needed to investigate a specific crime and the shoe database is clearly being used all the time.

The situation is causing much merriment in Sweden amongst the file sharing community which they say goes to prove how difficult the universe would be to run if the anti-file sharing lobby gets its way.   If the only way the police can run their database is by trying to use a dubious "get out of jail free card", what chance do ordinary people have?