Indian Pirates Constitution

  • Preamble
  • Article 1: Basic Principles
  • Article 2: Rights
  • Article 3: Membership
  • Article 4: Organizational Goals


Version 5.2.0 Draft
Download as PDF


Preamble

  • Who are we?
    • We are a group of people engaging in political activities with the aim of becoming a political party some day*.
  • Why Indian Pirates?
    • No one asked us how we think this world should be. We should no longer accept what we supposedly cannot change. Instead, we need to change what we cannot accept.
    • So we are remaking this world the way we think it should be
    • Based on equality, democracy and transparency.

Preamble

  • Fix what is broken
    • Peer-to-Peer vs hierarchical society
    • Association of peers vs leaders and cadres
    • Direct democracy vs Plutocracy

Preamble

  • What is special about us?
    • We are not a family controlled party, we are also not a cadre party, everyone has a voice, every decisions we make is public (transparency), our funding source is public.
    • We need systematic change in political parties, not just different people following the same system. If only the party is really transparent and accountable to its members, it can really uphold its values. To make that possible, dissent and not discipline is the cornerstone of our group. Once you become a member you cannot be expelled from the group for indiscipline, a common tactic used by all parties to suppress dissent.

Article 1: Basic Principles

  • Section 1: Indian Pirates are committed to support human rights, direct democracy and participation in government, reform of copyright and patent law, free sharing of knowledge (open content), information privacy, transparency, freedom of information, anti-corruption and network neutrality.

Article 1: Basic Principles

  • Section 2: Human beings have innate value. Rights of every human being is described in Universal Declaration of human rights. We will fight to ensure these rights are not denied to anyone.
  • Section 3: We understand individuals and families of all sections of the society and different geographic locations have a right to realize equal life chances regardless of identity. Economic inequity, caste or gender or sexuality based discrimination, and differential abilities prevent many from realizing the equity of opportunities.

Article 1: Basic Principles

  • Section 4: We should cooperate with each other.
  • Section 5: Every one has a right to food, housing, education, healthcare and privacy.
  • Section 6: Knowledge should be free.
  • Section 7: We promote transparent government.

Article 1: Basic Principles

  • Section 8: We are opposed to the use of violence to achieve political aims. We will not, in any manner, promote or instigate or participate in violence. AND WE MEAN IT. However, we see violence as distinct from the issue it supports or opposes. The violence must be prosecuted through prevailing laws, and the issue must be evaluated through debate on its own merit.
  • Section 9: In a world with limited resources, unlimited growth is impossible. It is our responsibility to protect the environment and pass on this planet earth to our future generations in a livable condition.

Article 2: Rights

  • Section 1: Activities

    • Sub-Section 1: Any associate may propose a new activity (Surveys, Campaigns etc that involves coordinated effort to reach general public as Indian Pirates).
    • Sub-Section 2: Any new activity proposal must get support from at least 2 members.
    • Sub-section 3: A new activity proposal will be rejected if at least one member blocks it (if the activity is against our basic principles).

Article 2: Rights

  • Section 2: Policies

    • Sub-Section 1: Any associate may create a sub group (Working Group) for an activity or subject.
    • Sub-Section 2: A sub group may propose a new policy, but only members can approve it (make it official).
    • Sub-Section 3: Policies are not binding to members and they have to promote only policies they agree with.
    • Sub-Section 4: Every member has a right to dissent and fork.
    • Sub-Section 5: Can campaign against collective's policy.
    • Sub-Section 6: Can fork and use collective's name if they accept basic principles (add differentiating part).

Article 3: Membership

  • Section 1: Associate

    • Sub-Section 1: Anyone (any nationality) who agrees with our basic principles and constitution can become an associate.
    • Sub-Section 2: An associate can apply for membership after 6 months of working with the movement.
    • Sub-Section 3: An associate should demonstrate their commitment to the basic principles in their work - through blogs, their social networks, by organzing events, etc.
    • Sub-Section 4: They need support from at least two members.

Article 3: Membership

  • Section 2: Initial Member (No longer applicable. See History at Appendix 2)

    • Sub-Section 1: Membership with 6 months validity only. Used for bootstrapping.
    • Sub-Section 2: Initial members have voting rights.
    • Sub-Section 3: Initial members may apply for full membership after 6 months.
    • Sub-Section 4: Initial members will be evaluated in the same way as associates (See Article 3 - Section 1: Sub-Sections 3 and 4).
    • Sub-Section 5: Initial members were accepted only for first 6 months.
    • Sub-Section 6: After 6 months of intial membership, they become an associate.

Article 3: Membership

  • Section 3: Member (Permanent Member)

    • Sub-Section 1: An associate or initial member can apply for membership after demonstrating their commitment to this constitution in their work.
    • Sub-Section 2: Criteria for membership is given in Article 3 - Section 1: Sub-Sections 2, 3 and 4.
    • Sub-Section 3: Members have voting rights.

Article 4: Organizational Goals

(These are goals for members and we have a separate document "Manifesto" which documents the specific policy changes we want to bring about in the society)


  • Section 1: At the minimum we would like the ideas of peer-to-peer, direct democratic organization to spread in our society.

Article 4: Organizational Goals

  • Section 2: We recognize that using English as the primary language is a barrier for communication and we understand the need for information to be available in different languages. We do not discourage the use of native language for discussions, but it is preferred to use the commonly used language(s) for the sake of better communication since we have different people speaking different languages. We will work to the best of our efforts to make the information available in different languages, starting with the Constitution, Manifesto, website and all proposals, according to the availability of time and volunteers.

Article 4: Organizational Goals

  • Section 3: Register as a political party when we have at least 100 members in a state. Once we have that we may have to adjust our constitution to match the requirements of Election Commission of India. Once 100 people sign a resolution to form a party with a constitution compliant with Election Commission's requirements, we become a registered political party.

Appendix 1: The Pirate Label

  • The “pirate” label, which had been used by the media and film industries in campaigns against copyright infringement, is a reappropriation of the word.
  • In sociology and cultural studies, reappropriation is the cultural process by which a group reclaims—re-appropriates—terms or artifacts that were previously used in a way disparaging of that group.

Appendix 2: History

  • First batch of initial members of Indian Pirates were initial members of Pirate Movement of India.
  • Pirate Movement of India was abandoned since no initial member requested permanent membership after 6 months.
  • Initial members joined after first batch of Initial members from Pirate Movement of India had their membership valid for some more time after new initial memberships were closed.
  • They approved permanent members before their term of 6 months expired, from initial members and associates who completed 6 months by then (those who joined before them).