SOPA PIPA Internet Censorship
We all need to be informed of these two pieces of legislation and act accordingly! It could change the Internet as we know it. Jan 12
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When Rebecca MacKinnon was working for CNN in Beijing from 1992 to 2001, she and her fellow expats expected that the coming age of global networking would strongly undermine the Communist Party's grip on the reigns. But a decade later, she writes, "I grew to believe that we were naive." The Internet is not the stepping stone to democracy she had hoped. In part, that's because citizens aren't the only ones building the net. Corporations and governments are shaping its space and its power, and oftentimes in ways that work against democratic goals. In her new book, Consent of the Networked: The Worldwide Struggle for Internet Freedom , MacKinnon issues a call to arms for the people of the Internet.
Wikipedia was just one of many popular websites that went dark yesterday, in an unprecedented protest against controversial anti-piracy legislation that threatens the open internet — and reporters are scrambling to understand the debate in familiar terms: Is it right vs. left? Silicon Valley vs. Hollywood? But opposition to the Stop Online Piracy Act and its Senate counterpart, the Protect IP Act, is shattering those familiar battle lines. Back when so-called “network neutrality” regulation was the hot-button technology issue of the day, conservative Republicans such as Rep.
resistance to sopa
As staunch supporters of the Stop Online Piracy Act, it comes as no surprise that the RIAA would scoff at the OPEN Act, a measure proposed by Congressman Darrell Issa and Senator Ron Wyden. It’s just the argument that is unbelievable, although nothing at this point should really be unbelievable. The OPEN Act is a sort of alternative to SOPA that is similar in many ways and vastly different in others. The main difference that RIAA Executive Vice President Mitch Glazier touches on in a recent blog post has to do with what arm of the federal government aids in the enforcement of copyright infringement claims, and how they go about it. Basically with SOPA, we all know that sites deemed “rogue” and perpetrators of illegal activity will face annihilation with the simple accusation of wrongdoing.
Kevin Drum takes a courageous and rare stand on the internet, arguing that yes, downloading millions of files from JSTOR while evading attempts by both JSTOR, and the owner of the network you're using, to stop you, is, well, pretty close to stealing: This affair has raised a lot of hackles among the infovore set, but I'm a little stumped about why I should be outraged. As James Joyner says, maybe this should have been a civil matter, not a criminal one (though Swartz did break into an MIT network closet to do all this), but beyond that does anyone really think JSTOR should just sit idly by as their entire archive is downloaded? Would the librarians at Stanford sit idly by if someone backed up a semi and started shoveling hundreds of thousands of books into it? Sure, there's no evidence that you're planning to steal the books. Maybe you intend to return them all in two weeks.
It's really quite stunning to watch Lamar Smith pull out really out-dated talking points as he gets more and more desperate to defend SOPA, as he discovers that all the vaunted "support" that the US Chamber of Commerce promised him there was for the bill melts away . We've already gone through Smith's detailed "defense" of the bill and pointed out that nearly all of it was based on either false or misleading research . And what's worse is that Smith obviously knows this: he specifically cherry picks studies to support his position. In fact, he uses studies produced by lobbyists over the ones produced by the government , when the government ones show that the entire basis for SOPA is faulty. The only reason to do that is because you know the actual facts don't support your position.
January 11, 2012, 2:58 PM — If you've been following the debate over the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) adored by music companies, broadcasters and hardly anyone else, you'll have noticed bipartisan coalitions in Congress are among the least strange bedfellows – not to mention other odd conditions or changes – on both sides of the bill. [ Free download: Patents and the lessons learned from Web 2.0 ] It's pretty interesting to follow the money trails between companies hoping to make more money if SOPA passes, in fact, and the politicians supporting it . A group described as the "fathers of the Internet" opposeed SOPA in a letter to Congress, which is good because if they appear to testify, they may be able to explain how both SOPA and the Internet work to supporters in Congress who appear not to understand either one .
A ton of folks have been sending over Steve Blank's absolutely awesome detailed analysis of why Hollywood can't innovate ... and the result is SOPA. It touches on many points we've raised separately, but puts it all together in such a fantastic and comprehensive package. Seriously: just go read it. It kicks off by noting a key point that we've raised in the past, but which often gets underplayed: the vast majority of movie industry revenue these days comes from pay-per-view TV, cable, satellite, video rentals, DVD sales and online subscriptions/digital downloads. In fact, this is the part of Hollywood's business that it insists is most under threat from infringement. But, here's the thing: if the MPAA had had its way over the last century, none of those things would have existed.
Posted by JacobSloan on January 9, 2012 The major news networks apparently feel that the controversial proposed Stop Online Piracy Act is an important piece of legislation — the parent companies are all working to ensure its passage. Strange, then, that there has been no on air mention of the bill. Media Matters writes:
Largely, the fight between SOPA supporters and those against the potential censoring of the Internet, all in name of protecting the entertainment industry’s intellectual property, has been conducted over the web. But now, it seems the mainstream media, the corporate-owned entity that it is, has finally thrown their hat into the fight, and surprisingly, they aren’t simply repeating the talking points put forth by SOPA-supporting government officials. In fact, much to my surprise, the mainstream, 24-hour media cycle — including Fox News — is offering the “SOPA is bad for the web” perspective, and seems to be supporting that perspective. Take, for instance, the appearance of the Cato Institute’s Jim Harper on Fox News’ business channel. Considering the think tank’s libertarian background, it’s safe to say the group is against the protection acts, and I can’t help but be impressed by the Fox Business Channel’s willingness to relay the message.
Put down those torches and pick up the phone. Updated : Okay, so the Internet won, and Go Daddy has decided to stop supporting SOPA , but that doesn’t mean you should stop yourself from actually taking any one of these steps to speak directly to Congress. Many in the tech community are against the Stop Online Piracy Act, but it’s time for a bit of a reality check on working with Washington D.C. As Clay Johnson put it pretty bluntly in his post on why Internet companies need to stop bitching about the system and learn how it works, y’all need to stop freaking out about GoDaddy supporting the effort and start doing something that could directly kill it. This whole Go Daddy boycott can be a side project , but if you really want to kill SOPA here’s what you need to do: Call your Congressperson .
The Stop Online Piracy Act (H.R. 3261) , known as “SOPA,” is scheduled for consideration at a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee tomorrow. The bill is aimed at taking down sites that allow Internet users to acquire pirated versions of original artistic content online. At a recent hearing, the ACLU expressed opposition to the bill because it would allow for the takedown of non-infringing content along with infringing content, in violation of the First Amendment. Earlier this week, former Sen. Chris Dodd, now head of the Motion Picture Association, in a presentation at the Center for American Progress advocated in favor of new laws like SOPA that would protect movie studios against copyright infringement by foreign copyright pirates.