Nuggets of Wisdom

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

SOPA/PIPA Protest Tommorow

Tomorrow begins the day-long internet protest of SOPA and PIPA—two bills which threaten to censor the internet in the name of fighting piracy. Websites like Google will post links to anti-SOPA information on their front page, while other sites like Reddit and Wikipedia will blackout altogether. Hopefully, this protest will help raise awareness of these two bills and the danger they pose towards internet freedom—and considering that the mainstream media (most of which is owned by the corporations supporting the bills) has remained silent, it will probably be one of the only ways most Americans will be made aware.

So far, the fight against these bills has proven strong and successful. Over the weekend, Obama has voiced opposition towards them, forcing Congress to shelve SOPA—at least until they reach a “consensus.” Also, the provision which would have allowed the federal government to block access to overseas sites accused of piracy has been lifted.

But the fight is far from over, and now is not the time to relax. If anything, we need to keep up the resistance, which is why this protest will still continue as planned, even with the recent shelving of SOPA. The future of the internet is at stake here.

For me personally, if either of these two bills passes, it will mean the death of my two favorite websites. First, That Guy With The Glasses, whose reviewers feature copyrighted material in order to review movies, music, video games, and other forms of entertainment. For Doug Walker and other reviewers, SOPA will literally cost them their livelihood, which is why they went so far as to travel to Washington in order to address this bill before Congress.

And then there’s Equestria Daily, the unofficial My Little Pony blog that streams the newest episodes once they come out. Now considering that Hasbro and the show’s production team endorses the site, even sending them official material, it could very well be safe from the clutches of SOPA. But you never know. SOPA could very well kill it. (And then where will I watch the new episodes?)

So for everyone who values internet freedom, do your part and fight these bills. Inform others about them, because obviously the media won’t. And contact your representatives. Tell them you do not approve of these bills and will not re-elect them if they vote for either. And if they do vote for either, come election time, vote them out!