Pirate Party 2014

In 2014, I took my first political briefing: “you are interested in digital culture and privacy. Help us get a seat at the Amsterdam city elections. With no budget. In six weeks.” Though I have my doubts with the name, I wholeheartedly support their crucial fight for protecting our privacy.
Spindoctoring: "modern day politics needs nerds."

Spindoctoring: “modern day politics needs nerds.”

We decided upon a highly dynamic communication strategy. I helped our anchor, activist and model Ancilla Tilia, get as much publicity as possible and created soundbites for her. 

ancilla pirate party

I also bartered a mediadeal with shockblog Geenstijl and, together with Ancilla and fellow copywriter Niels Arnbak, helped design various mediastunts.


The occasional tweet didn’t hurt either:

big brother instruction manual

Back to those stunts. Together with Geenstijl, we made two happen. This was the first.

The second stunt we christened “tracking the trackers”:


We placed GPS trackers on the data-hungry cars of the Amsterdam city parking-administration.

For one day, everyone in Amsterdam could see where the tickets were written. (And park cheap). The realtime GPS signals were shown on Amsterdam city maps, the routes were dumped as open source XML files:

map tracking gps


Here are some of the media-outlets that shared our stunt:

geenstijl piratenpartij

volkskrant piratenpartij

FTM piratenpartij

piratenpartij at5

Parool piratenpartij


Amsterdam, meanwhile, was having a laugh:

Parool tweettweet Brenno pritt piratenpartij piratenpartij tweet

And we, the Pirate Party, got one of our central messages across:

the datahunger of both governments and companies should be tamed and supervised by the people they purport to serve.



At the Amsterdam elections, after just six weeks of campaigning, we chalked up 2% of the votes.

There were just three parties that could show more growth in terms of electoral share.

election results


Sadly, we were 181 votes (!) short of obtaining a seat in the council.  Argh, we said.

And then we drank a bottle of rum.

logo piratenpartij