Walking home a few days ago I was surprised to see Sauli Niinistö (the current Finnish president) staring at me from one of Pengerkatu’s electric boxes. He was not on that street corner when I was taking photos for my Kallio graffiti blog post, so I took special notice of him this time…

Street art in Pengerkatu

Street art in Pengerkatu

After a little searching around on the web, I have a vague idea what “Sauli of the sacred heart” is trying to say… Lex Karpela refers to a 2005 amendment to the Finnish Copyright Act and Criminal Code (getting its common name from the then Culture Minister, Tanja Karpela). Some interpret a part of this legislation to potentially be restricting the freedom of speech (details in Wikipedia).

Interestingly, the debate around copyright and patent legislation is fairly high profile in Finland (at least relative to South Africa), in part due to a very active Piraattiliitto (“The Pirate Alliance”). The related Piraattipuolue (the Pirate Party of Finland) ran in the 2011 parliamentary elections and is now the largest party with no parliamentary seats.

 

(Visited 52 times, 1 visits today)