Wednesday, January 18, 2012


Marion Pellicano Ambrose

Almost 7,000 websites are protesting in some form today, against the US House of Representatives “Stop Piracy Act” and the Senate’s “Protect IP Act”. Some are going dark, while others are posting protests. Just this morning, I had 3 different posts condemning these 2 pieces of legislature.

Some of the sites firmly protesting are: Wikipedia, Google, Reddit, WordPress, TwitPic, Cheezburger, BoingBoing, several gaming companies including Minecraft, and Mozilla, source of the Firefox web browser. Wikipedia, BoingBoing and Minecraft have gone dark. Others, like Google, are displaying home page illustrations or visual statements about censorship and urging visitors to contact their elected representatives.

 Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), sponsor of SOPA, responded to Wikipedia going black: “It is ironic that a website dedicated to providing information is spreading misinformation about the Stop Online Piracy Act. The bill will not harm Wikipedia, domestic blogs or social networking sites. This publicity stunt does a disservice to its users by promoting fear instead of facts. Perhaps during the blackout, Internet users can look elsewhere for an accurate definition of online piracy.”

Senator Marco Rubio rescinded his support of  The Protect IP Act (PIPA).Rubio joined a growing number of elected officials from both parties who are distancing themselves from, if not outright condemning, PIPA and the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA). The bills have been attracting an increasing amount of criticism over the past few weeks, but this level of exodus began after the White House signaled on Saturday that it wouldn’t support the bills.

SOPA and PIPA are both designed to prohibit servers from accessing websites “dedicated” to copyright infringement, and make websites liable for hosting pirated material. Media companies, who claim that piracy is costing them money and forcing layoffs, are the biggest supporters of the bills. The bills have come under intense scrutiny both for their possible implications in web censorship and for putting the United States in a position of policing an international realm. Rubio now says he worries about the ramifications of PIPA on the freedom and agility of the internet.

1 comment:

  1. Censorship changes the message of everything...
    Here's a very witty example of it;