Week 7- SOPA and PIPA

After reading articles, watching YouTube posts, getting feedback from friends, and gaining information from other sources I have seen a variety of views regarding (mostly) SOPA but also PIPA (PROTECT IP Act) and Anonymous. Many American citizens are all up in arms about the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA). The point of the SOPA bill is to put every person who ever posted or streamed ‘intellectual property or counterfeit goods’ in jail for a maximum penalty of 5 years. PROTECT IP Act (PIPA) has a similar goal, to hire about 50 special agents to track people down who are managing websites that offer counterfeit goods.

Many companies such as National Basketball Association, LOreal, MasterCard Worldwide, Nike, Disney, and many others have taken a stand to show their support for the bill. This did not help the public opinion of the companies or SOPA. With an out raged public and boycotts being planned for a whole list of companies, is it really possible for these mega billion dollar companies to get the message? These companies have nothing to lose but the people that support them do. That is why people are going crazy over this bill.

In response to the uproar of opinions, Wikipedia sided with the public and made a drastic move. For 24 hours from January 18th to 19th, the online resource blacked out all of their articles. In place of their article that was being searched for a message was prompted, “imagine a world without free knowledge”. This was believed to get the attention of about 160 million people, which is about half of the US population. This is a major ramification to the web, if SOPA passes; think of all the free sources available today that will be lost.

4 thoughts on “Week 7- SOPA and PIPA

  1. barans11

    Personally this whole thing really worries me. I do not want the government regulating the internet as much as SOPA and PIPA are suggesting. It would completely change the way everything is right now and I’m not sure it would be in a good way. I think that a solution to piracy needs to be worked on but I don’t think this is it. The article that talked about how even if we fight this, Congress will just come up with a SOPA II in the future when we aren’t looking is a good point. If nothing else some of these provision will get added onto other bills that have important things on them. I’m glad that Wikipedia seems to be on the public’s side though. So many people use it and was then able to spread the message around. It’s also a great message because WIkipedia is a nonprofit organization so they really wouldn’t lose money if Wikipedia got shut down by SOPA but they also realize the information and resources that would be lost if other websites were to be shut down.

  2. whidbyri

    Every day it seems that there is a new law or act trying to regulate how we use the Internet. While I believe that piracy is a big issue in today’s society I also believe both of these bills are going about it the wrong way. You are right about the negative public opinion against these measures as many believe along with myself that these regulations would change the Internet as we know it today forever. The Wikipedia shutdown demonstration against SOPA was a major stand for Internet freedom that also provided awareness to an issue that until recently had been under publicized. Other major Internet players have taken a stance against the acts as well including internet giants Google, Mozilla, eBay, Facebook, AOL, Twitter, and many more. It just seems to me that instead of coming up with a plan that will actually combat piracy head on, they chose to settle for one which attacks all intent users, regular and pirates alike.

  3. leichtke

    I like how you focused on the public’s dislike for bill such as SOPA and PIPA. File sharing has become such a popular practice among so many people in today’s culture, that oftentimes people do not even realize that what they are doing is an issue. Taking the step to closely regulate how everybody uses the internet is not appealing to most people. And taking steps such as hiring special agents and sending people to jail is very extreme, especially considering the large number of people that take part in these activities. In addition, it can make it harder on some of the big internet players that the second comment mentions. They would have to make sure that everything is censored so there are no links to any sites that are involved in copyright infringements or counterfeit products. While I understand what the government is trying to do, they need to try to find a different way to deal with these copyright issues.

  4. nguye263

    Your explanation about the Sopa and Pipa are extraordinary! I enjoyed hearing your perspective how these laws are going in the wrong direction to change and help illegal piracy based actions. These actions are occurring every day, and laws like such are not making much of difference. All of it comes down to how our government approaches in handling the issue especially if it is a serious one. People truly dislike for a specific reason. I am glad you were able to reflect on why the public dislikes the policy. The policy could be enforced; however, there are still many people who are still performing such illegal piracy based actions. If the government is truly passionate about this issue then maybe Officials need to re evaluate their enforcement policy. Our country emphasizes about enjoying freedom or being original, however, so many laws being laid down everyday which refrains individual from accessing to their full potential. It’s sad but true. I’m glad you were able to explain and reflect on an individual originality or potential in your response.

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