Music industry spokesman loves child porn

A music-industry speaker at an American Chamber of Commerce event in Stockholm waxed enthusiastic about child porn, because it serves as the perfect excuse for network censorship, and once you've got a child-porn filter, you can censor anything:
"Child pornography is great," the speaker at the podium declared enthusiastically. "It is great because politicians understand child pornography. By playing that card, we can get them to act, and start blocking sites. And once they have done that, we can get them to start blocking file sharing sites".

The venue was a seminar organized by the American Chamber of Commerce in Stockholm on May 27, 2007, under the title "Sweden -- A Safe Haven for Pirates?". The speaker was Johan Schlüter from the Danish Anti-Piracy Group, a lobby organization for the music and film industry associations, like IFPI and others...

"One day we will have a giant filter that we develop in close cooperation with IFPI and MPA. We continuously monitor the child porn on the net, to show the politicians that filtering works. Child porn is an issue they understand," Johan Schlüter said with a grin, his whole being radiating pride and enthusiasm from the podium.

IFPI's child porn strategy (Thanks, Thomas!)


  1. Well that sounds horribly evil. I knew industry wonks were ham-fisted, ignorant brutes, but I didn’t really expect this whole “I am smiling at the thought of monitoring and controlling millions of people via their computers” Disney-level villainy.

    1. Well, I actually did expect Disney-level villainy.

      What I didn’t expect is that you’d have incompetent villainy.

      Bragging about your evil scheme to rule the world (while smiling about it) is bad enough, but to give your opposition ammunition by smiling while saying “child pornography is great” into an open microphone is, like, Austin Powers level comedic villainy. I have to at least entertain the notion that Johan Schlüter might be some character being played by a Sascha Baron Cohen wannabe.

  2. This is exactly what I can see happening to us here in Australia once the gov imposes the clean feed filter. Once they have the infrastructure in place to block child porn, music industry pressures pols to start blocking piracy sites. Then who knows what else! BoingBoing>?
    What a bright wonderful future were headed for!

    1. The funniest part about the Australian filter? It won’t actually stop the criminals from accessing blocked material. Instead, it just screws over everyone else.

  3. What this story tells us is that Johan Schlüter is so confident in his ability to bamboozle (or buy) legislators that he doesn’t worry about tipping his hand. Let’s hope he’s an incompetent Disney villain who has said too much, and not just … right.

  4. Correct me if I’m wrong but isn’t it a crime to profit off of a violent crime? I would think you could make a case that he’s doing just that.

    1. interesting thought you had there. Probably hard to use, but interesting nevertheless.

      Yeah, this level of comic book incompetence in evildoing… wow. The music industry should really consider not hiring out of work Austin Powers extras as spokespeople.

  5. Is this actually something that you can say without it ruining your career? Publicly announcing that you are glad that child pornography exists so you can use it to push through (easily-bypassed, as the link helpfully points out) ‘net filtering? And actually publicly announcing that you intend to manipulate the government?

    Or is he really a double-agent planted by the Pirate Party to undermine the entertainment giants?

  6. When you start your argument with “Child pornography is great,” you’ve already lost the argument.

  7. Rapturists want Armageddon. Some right-wingers have prayed for another 9/11 so that they could expand their base. Big Pharma manages illness rather than curing it.

    If you’re in a defensive industry, your enemy is also your cash cow.

  8. “The venue was a seminar organized by the American Chamber of Commerce in Stockholm on May 27, 2007”

    Huh? It was organized in 2007 or took place then? When was the statement made.

    Is the quote accurate? Is it and the audience reaction captured on audio and/or video? That could be a very powerful tool to expose their real callous and despotic nature.

  9. “Child porn = file sharing” is like saying “poison = cooking”, he is using an abhorrent anomaly as justification for quashing a valuable tool. Plus he is basically admitting to using scare tactics to get his way.

    If the leaders of 15th century Europe decided that printing of books was bad because they found some people printing pornography, and so decided to ban all books. . . well. . .

    1. “If the leaders of 15th century Europe decided that printing of books was bad because they found some people printing pornography, and so decided to ban all books…”

      They tried. (And the reasons given were likewise contrived.)

    2. “If the leaders of 15th century Europe decided that printing of books was bad because they found some people printing pornography, and so decided to ban all books. . . well. . . ”

      sounds like something the catholic church would try to pull…

  10. Hmm, isn’t blocking child pornography exactly the reason why the Australian government wants to put internet filters in place for all Australians? What a coincidence…

  11. “Child pornography is great!” Johan Schlüter from the Danish Anti-Piracy Group

    let’s see how many times that shows up in Google.

  12. Saddest thing is, because of this, the child pornographers have become the cutting-edge of privacy advocacy.

    The internet was founded on military research, but development and growth was driven and funded mostly by (regular, vanilla) porn. The majority of traffic for a long time (even now? Not sure, haven’t seen any stats lately) was porn. Porn was cutting edge, and drove the development of online payment systems, p2p filesharing, and suchlike.

    After porn, there was piracy. Piracy (and gaming, to an extent) drove the uptake of broadband, and further development of P2P.

    Currently, systems like Freenet and TOR owe a lot of their popularity (and traffic, and bandwidth, and development) to child porn. It will, I’m pretty sure, result in us finally getting a system for end-to-end anonymous payments (BitCoin is one way to go, but there are other proposals, too), and getting a solid infrastructure for fast anonymous P2P file sharing, and a good system of web browsing that’s not snoopable by your government.

    I’m *really hoping* that more reasonable stuff will be pushed underground by the MPAA/RIAA and other pro-ACTA lobbyists, so we won’t have to hail child pornographers as saviours of the internet. I’d much prefer to treat pirates as heroes, instead.

    1. Actually, nowadays it’s just around 2% of the internet being porn (according to 8 out of 10 cats. British comedians: the most trusted name in porn statistics) if measured by memory. That’s still a substantial amount, though.

      1. 2% is nothing compared to the estimates it used to get in the mid 90s, though – I heard as high as 95% quoted. I think Time magazine even frontpaged an assertion of 85%.

  13. So every time a child is molested, the RIAA gets a check? They literally base their enforcement scheme on the tears of children? Darth Vader just emailed me and he said they were just being too evil.

  14. Let me see if I understand…

    People convicted (or not) of producing, selling, buying, and/or possessing child pornography aren’t actually pedophiles.

    They’re really secret agents for some music industry anti-piracy campaign.

    But I suppose they’re sworn to secrecy, of course.

  15. Reminds me of Bono holding up Red China as proof of how easy it is to control access to content.

    Proprietary content industries heart Red China and kiddie porn.

  16. Today I will download 10 gigs of music from the internet. I will pay nothing. I know of good places and no way they can catch you.

    Then I will make a donation to the NSPCC.

  17. Cory, the title of your post should be changed to “Johan Schlüter loves child porn”

    Time to destory whatever remaining credibility this dirtbag had.

    Today I will download 10 gigs of music from the internet. I will pay nothing. I know of good places and no way they can catch you.
    Hear, Hear. Share it with your friends, too :)

    1. Well, Bravo to you. I think that that’s a tactic that all well meaning people should be doing (from the majors at least).

      Yeah, I’ve been on that for about ten years now. Ever since they thought it was any sort of a good idea to take down Napster.

      If you spend money on big media, they WILL turn around and use it to screw you by manipulating the legislative process. Don’t give these slimebags a thin dime.

  18. Well, internet, I believe the course now is clear.

    Someone find us this audio make a catchy dance remix, with facts about the music industry as text on the youtube screen. Let’s show them what fair use can do, and let’s meme this motherfucker out of a job.

  19. “politicians understand child pornography”

    Coming from an industry lobby, it is a great way of saying that they don’t understand anything about it. IT is one of those keywords that shut down both of their brain cells and makes them do even more stupid things than usually.

    CP is like the terrorism card. You play it and it makes the politicians and policy makers do the terrorists’ (or child pornographers’) jobs for them – along with incredible amounts of collateral damage.
    With terrorism, it results in scaremongering and terror and slowly running down the society. With child pornographers, it involves hiding CP and not taking any real action (which is what they want too) while blocking mostly legitimate content and creating a process and precedent of “guilty unless proven otherwise and we don’t tell you about it”.

  20. I am against child porn for sure, but all this Big Brother, watching everything we do is getting me sick, now they are violating our rights to navigate internet freely, they are CLEARLY VIOLATING INTERNET NEUTRALITY.
    OK, I think its time to START A RESISTENCE, as a physician, cyberpunker, tech geek and activist for our rights on the real and virtual worlds, we REALLY SHOULD DO SOMETHING TO STOP THIS.
    This is a good start, facebook groups to save internet neutrality:

  21. Hey dear boing boing moderators, this is one of many times my comment on a topic is deleted even if I am not writing anything bad or trolling, have you problems with your comments system? I am a serious man, and medical doctor.

    By the way, I just wanted to say I am against child porn, but also against censorship of our internet freedom. If they are going to use this as excuse for censorship, then we must do something about it.
    As cyberpunker and tech geek I am very concerned about this. Please read this Cyberpunk manifesto

    Since you obviously don’t read responses to your comments, I’ll put the answer in your comment. In bold. The system holds comments with more than one URL from the same domain. But if you would be happier feeling oppressed by THE MAN, don’t let me stop you.

  22. I don’t think he is saying child pornography is great. I think he is saying the phrase “child pornography” is great because everyone knows how horrible it is (even politicians). He is using it as a way to stop file sharing sites from enabling people to steal software, music and movies. Yes, stealing!!!! and yes, enabling stealing!!!

    The phrase “file sharing” sounds harmless, but the phrase “distributing child pornography” sounds awful.

    I am all for legal file sharing, but MOST bit torrents are all about sharing music, software, and videos people don’t own.

  23. Interesting… Swedens neighbouring country Finland has had a “child pornography” filter in place since 2008.

  24. I almost submitted this link, but since it was from a blog instead of a main stream media site and because my track record for submissions hasn’t been very good lately I decided against it. I’m really glad it made it to Boing Boing though, people need to see this.

  25. A) What he is saying is far worse than the sensational headline you attached to the item.

    B)I don’t understand why all of guys sound so surprised?
    He just expressed out loud the social structure that has being going on for a long time…

    Today the terms “pedophile” and “terrorist” are used as a goverment controlling tool where everyone suddenly shut up and let the goverment (all western goverments) do what ever it wants in realizaion of how horrible those things are.
    Moral panic, opression by the majority, hatred and pressecution are engraved in American tradition.
    Before that, there were “communist” and “homosexual”, horrible creatures that need to be exterminated!
    Before that there were the witches and the jews.
    In other places it were heretics, and so on…

    This speaker is not evil. He simply uses the tools that were given to him by YOU!
    He is not breaking any law and he doen’t do anything which is not allowed.
    He is not more evil than the clerc at the IRS which comes down on you as hard as he is permitted.

    P.S If I’m not mistaken the whole legal issue with cannabis was fueled by hatred to mexicans.

  26. Tor is a sucky solution, this the last measure you can take to proect your freedom.
    It slows your internet down considerably and it only helps in net surfing.
    The greater problem are laws that mminimze your civil rights in all aspects. Like this outrageos demand to show your computers content when crossing the border and alowing the guards to make copis of it. Secret business documents, private photos, and whatever- all for others to see.
    And this is just one example.

  27. I’m gonna follow Johan Schlüter’s shock tactics and say, sure, “child porn is great!” It means dumb sickos who abuse kids have left hard evidence of this and potentially a trail to track them down.

    But saying it’s great because it serves your own (unrelated) purposes makes you almost as evil as the perpetrators.

  28. Everyone will just be driven to networks like Freenet ( and/or Tor ( They will be coming after people sharing music/movies next.

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