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Posted in Tech blog on January 17th, 2012 by Pingdom So what happened with the Internet in 2011? How many email accounts were there in the world in 2011? How many websites? How much did the most expensive domain name cost? How many photos were hosted on Facebook?
WASHINGTON -- At a House Judiciary Committee hearing Wednesday, Democrats and Republicans joined together to voice support for legislation that would criminalize much of the activity that occupies the Internet. The bipartisan bill known as the Stop Online Piracy Act would establish major new powers for corporations intent on corralling copyrighted materials -- powers that would lead to big legal bills for start-ups and Silicon Valley giants alike. SOPA's Senate counterpart, the PROTECT IP Act, was already voted out of the Senate Judiciary Committee in September. Both political parties -- flush with campaign contributions from Hollywood studios and trial lawyers -- are eager to pass the legislation. The Senate version, introduced in May, has broad support, but has been held up by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.).
If freedom of expression, privacy and innovation online matter to you, it's time to pay attention to what's happening in Congress right now. There's a gathering storm over bills proposed in the United States House of Representatives and Senate that have the potential to significantly hinder innovation, free speech and cybersecurity on the Internet in the name of fighting online piracy. As the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT) highlights in its new summary of the problems and implications H.R. 3261, the Stop Online Piracy Act , "SOPA sweeps much more broadly and would chill online innovation and expression by creating major new litigation risks for service providers currently protected by the DMCA safe harbor."