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Old 01-14-2012, 02:05 PM   #1
Nick Vader
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Join Date: Apr 2009
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Exclamation SOPA: Had it coming I guess...

Quote:
The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) is a bill that was introduced in the United States House of Representatives on October 26, 2011, by Representative Lamar Smith and a bipartisan group of 12 initial co-sponsors. The bill expands the ability of U.S. law enforcement and copyright holders to fight online trafficking in copyrighted intellectual property and counterfeit goods. Now before the House Judiciary Committee, it builds on the similar PRO-IP Act of 2008 and the corresponding Senate bill, the PROTECT IP Act.
The originally proposed bill would allow the U.S. Department of Justice, as well as copyright holders, to seek court orders against websites accused of enabling or facilitating copyright infringement. Depending on who requests the court orders, the actions could include barring online advertising networks and payment facilitators such as PayPal from doing business with the allegedly infringing website, barring search engines from linking to such sites, and requiring Internet service providers to block access to such sites. The bill would make unauthorized streaming of copyrighted content a crime, with a maximum penalty of five years in prison for 10 such infringements within six months. The bill also gives immunity to Internet services that voluntarily take action against websites dedicated to infringement, while making liable for damages any copyright holder who knowingly misrepresents that a website is dedicated to infringement.
Proponents of the bill say it protects the intellectual property market and corresponding industry, jobs and revenue, and is necessary to bolster enforcement of copyright laws especially against foreign websites. They cite examples such as Google's $500 million settlement with the Department of Justice for its role in a scheme to target U.S. consumers with ads to buy illegal prescription drugs from Canadian pharmacies. Opponents say that it violates the First Amendment, is Internet censorship, will cripple the Internet, and will threaten whistle-blowing and other free speech.
The House Judiciary Committee held hearings on SOPA on November 16 and December 15, 2011. The Committee is scheduled to continue debate when Congress returns from its winter recess.
During December 2011 and early January 2012, support of the bill began to be described as "toxic" for supporting companies and an "election liability" for legislators. Subsequently proponents began hinting that key provisions might be deferred with opponents stating this was inadequate. Ex-supporter Go Daddy switched after "hemorrhaging" in a mass customer exodus. Wider protests have been considered and in some cases committed to by major internet sites, with high profile bodies such as Google, Facebook, Twitter, Yahoo, Amazon, AOL, Reddit, Mozilla, LinkedIn, IAC, Ebay, Paypal, Wordpress and Wikimedia being widely named as "considering" or committed to an "unprecedented" internet blackout on the day of the 18 January 2012 hearing.


Any thoughts on this?


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