You probably know about SOPA after today. Many influential sites like Reddit, Wikipedia, WordPress, flicker are participating in a protest. you probably would have notice many of this site are having a partial, user optional or complete blackout.
SOPA is an anti-piracy bill working its way through Congress, On Jan 24th, Congress will vote to pass internet censorship in the Senate. The core of SOPA is the ability of intellectual property owners (read: movie studios and record labels) to action from the country. Like asking Google to take of some site from the search or paypal not to accept money from a company based on theses claims.
The most dangerous part about SOPA in its let IP owners to take direct action without a single court appearance or judicial sign-off. All they have to do it write a single letter claiming a “good faith belief” that the target site has infringed on its content. Once the search engine or financial organisation receives the letter they are obliged to take action within 5 days to comply or challenge it back in back a court. It’s aimed specially at foreign offenders, which would eventually lead to a internet back list. This goes up to the point that, will enforces sites like facebook, wordpress, twitter to have policy to remove users personal status if they are linked up to sites like, “They don’t like”. Which will very easily split up internet based on the content accessibly decided by a group of people feels threatened with todays information and content distribution model over internet.
One could be non american and live in a different country this bill still effects us as the bill would authorize the US Department of Justice to ask for court orders against websites and companies outside America. “Almighty” has the right to block and place restrictions using government or private companies on anyone on the planet and to any anywhere it can just because someone american doesn’t like something. Its like a attack against any one or any company in the world “they” think could have potential access to their Intercultural property.
Today 18th January 2012, we see an unprecedented protest all over the world. Maybe this will eventually protect all of us against this global censorship, and allow us to g row and dream the way we have been, and not let us look for a new non global Internet safe haven.