TOP STORY: WEB GOES DARK
Some of the most popular sites on the Web are taking a stand against the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA). What’s it all about? Read Heartland’s coverage of this vital issue for freedom on the Internet. (click here)
Heartland Institute Reacts to SOPA Protest by Wikipedia, Other Sites
Several widely popular Web sites, including Wikipedia and Reddit, went dark today to protest the Stop Online Piracy Act, dramatically raising the profile of this obscure but important issue.
“The entertainment industry and its Congressional cronies tried to pull a fast one by attempting to pass SOPA with little to no transparency or public debate – and got their hands slapped by Wikipedia, Reddit, and other intentionally blacked-out sites.
“The effort is a tremendous public relations victory over SOPA in that millions of Internet users are now alerted to the proposed legislation’s very real threats to free speech, technical innovation, and due process. The blowback initiated by the blackouts promises a defeat of the legislation in the House or, failing that, a White House veto.”
- Bruce Edward Walker, Managing Editor, InfoTech & Telecom News
SOPA/PIPA Bad Legislation
The Stop Online Piracy Act and its counterpart in the Senate, the PROTECT IP Act, have gotten a lot of attention from Internet users in the past few months. Most of this attention has come in the form of opposition.
Indeed, outcry against these bills has come from digital rights groups as diverse as human rights activists; online companies like Google, Twitter, Tumblr, and Kickstarter; First Amendment scholars such as Marvin Ammori and Laurence Tribe; Internet engineers, including “father of the Internet” Vint Cerf; security experts Paul Vixie, Stewart Baker, and Dan Kaminski; and political groups across the spectrum, from the Cato Institute to MoveOn.org. (read more)
VIDEO: Stop Online Piracy Act Gives Government Too Much Power
According to the Congressional Budget Office, the PROTECT-IP/Stop Online Piracy Act (PIPA/SOPA) bill currently gaining momentum in Congress will cost taxpayers $47 million a year. In this video from Fight for the Future, other major drawbacks beyond costs of PIPA/SOPA are enumerated, including empowering government and corporations with the ability to censor the Internet under the guise of protecting creative works. (watch video)
Other Voices on SOPA and PIPA
The Stop Online Piracy Act, H.R.3261, and PROTECT IP Act, S.B. 968, go too far in expanding the authority of U.S. law enforcement and copyright holders in fighting online trafficking of copyrighted intellectual property and counterfeit goods, two legal experts say. “The flaws in the legislation are legion,” says Corynne McSherry, intellectual property director for the Electronic Frontier Foundation. (read more)
With your support, The Heartland Institute changes public policy. In 2012, we will hold our leaders accountable to the free-market principles they promised. With your help, we will work to restore freedom and prosperity. Visit giving.heartland.org and make a tax-deductible gift today!