“Indeed, 2011 may be remembered as the year Falkvinge’s big idea broke through into the public consciousness. His Pirates still aren’t exactly mainstream, but the issues they focus on — government transparency, Internet privacy, and copyright law — are very much in the Zeitgeist,” the journal explained.
Rick Falkvinge, a former Microsoft employee and software entrepreneur founded Sweden’s Pirate Party in 2006. He stepped down as leader in January 2011.
The Pirate Party grew out of a youth movement with origins in Scandinavia and were founded amidst the intense debate around file-sharing, the anti-piracy Ipred and the FRA wire-tapping laws.
They are currently active in around 20 countries.
Sweden’s Pirate Party first stood in a Riksdag election in 2006, claiming 0.63 percent of the vote.
In the 2009 elections to the European Parliament the party won one seat with 7.1 percent of the Swedish vote.
The party’s electoral success was short-lived however, with the party only registering 0.65 percent in Sweden’s 2010 Riksdag elections.
Falkvinge squeaked in 98th on the list which was dominated by the theme of the Arab Spring, represented by revolutionaries from the Arab world including Alaa Al Aswany, Mohamed Elbradei and Razan Zaitouneh.
He is the only Swede to make this year’s cut but is joined by Norwegian PM Jens Stoltenberg and Denmark’s Björn Lomborg.