Wednesday, January 18, 2012


You guys have probably heard of The House's Stop Internet Piracy Act and The Senate's Protect IP Act. The idea is that in order to protect the profits of companies whose intellectual property is infringed by internet piracy and bootlegging, The United States should be able to block sites which directly engage in piracy and selling bootlegs, as well as sites which support them.

This is a fine idea. Illegally downloading commercially available intellectual property--whether it's a movie, a book, a video game, or a comic book--is wrong. I won't elaborate why(it's baffling that I have to, but I can certainly address it another day.). Certainly, the internet is a large facilitator of these things.

However, SOPA and PIPA are not the way to address piracy and bootlegging. These bills allow websites to be held accountable for content created by users, for example, holding YouTube accountable for its comments section. They allow tech-savvy users to bypass them while locking out the rest. They put the onus for copyright cases onto the accused and not the accuser. Worse, they seek to create jobs in the movie and recording industry, but whatever money will end up back in the pockets of the MPAA and RIAA to make jobs, it can't possibly hope to measure up to those lost by putting small businesses and internet innovation at a disadvantage.

Anyway, there are a lot of sites that are blacked out today and a number who are actively working to get senators and representatives to change their votes. I've linked a number below and I suggest you look into it and take a moment to call or email your congressperson today about it.


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