Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Strike Against PIPA/SOPA. The Day the Internet Went on Strike.

Hey there.  Users of the internet are one of the most diverse groups to be ever found.  Angry users, funny users, serious users, working users.  Bloggers, journalists, game addcits, shopoholics... the list goes on and on. It would be amazing if something where to be able to bring this vast group to stand as one.  It's a task that would seem to be impossible.  Well... today... it happened.  Internet users and websites everywhere are taking a stand and striking against the proposed SOPA/PIPA bills that will soon be voted on by Congress.

SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) and PIPA (Protect IP Act) sound like good ideas...  but they are ideas that will go to far.  I want to feel safe when going online. I want to be protected... but at what cost?  The SOPA and PIPA bills will basically rid you of your free speech on the web.  Here is a break down of what the bills propose.  I am paraphrasing so don't take the below as the EXACT wording of the bills.
  • Provisions that would criminalize linking to sites accused of infringement, burdening websites based on user content with the task of policing their many posters on an impossibly micro level
  • Endangering investment in the tech sector as a whole, as investors will be wary of putting money into websites that are known to have the legal obligation to constantly scrub offending links
  • Wording that would hold websites blameless for "over-blocking" innocent websites in attempt to comply with new, strict guidelines, essentially encouraging the practice of mass online self-censorship
  • The bills frequently refer not only to infringing foreign sites, but also to sites found facilitating infringement, which means that a broad array of things could be potentially criminalized, from open-source software to aggregation websites
  • The bills use vague wording that could easily be exploited to twist the intended meaning of the law, and they include references to internet mechanics that are often far too simplistic (especially with regards to classifying "foreign" vs. "domestic" sites)
Do you really want to deal with that?  There is some pretty vague dialogue in these bills and they will severely restrict what we can do, say, post, share, and whatever else we feel like doing online.  Piracy is one thing... censorship is another.  The above reasons are why the internet is standing as one as opposed as millions of entities.  Millions are making their voice heard by protesting today.  Websites will be down to show unity and a petition is being signed to show strength.  Sign the petition here to make your voice heard! Later!
Bullet points taken from Joystick Division

6 comments:

Hey there Janet. I sure hope you signed the petition!

I have done all the above and did black out one blog. I posted on the other two. I even personally emailed all three of representatives and I received a response back from one. He is equally concerned about SOPA.

Great job, Bonnie! With enough people voicing their concerns, they'll be forced to listen and take action!

My human already signed the petition, and called two out of her three representatives (she will call the other senator tomorrow). My site was blacked out for 12 hours, and I blogged about this issue two days in a row to make sure that my community (cat bloggers - quite a large group!) understood and took action to protest SOPA and PIPA. Usually I am not a political kitty, but this totally impacts my blog and fellow cat bloggers.

Please make sure that you thank your human for me. Without action, I would never again get comments from a cat blogger! Lol. Thanks for the comment.

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