Tuesday, January 24, 2012
Saturday, January 21, 2012
It comes at no surprise that a bill like this was coming as the open ended nature of the net has many enemies, almost all of them corporate and powerful.The net has a history of causing trouble for numerous industries primarily as the music and film industry, who would be no doubt singing and dancing to the SOPA beat. However the irony is that thanks the cultural freedom facilitated by the net, more people than ever before are watching films and listening to music and it has been the failure of both industries to capitalize of this trend.
With the enacting of SOPA the characteristics which have defined the internet such open access, free expression, and free culture will disappear as sites that offer free culture will be shut down. unfortunately this will be a very expensive game of wack-a-mole as free culture sites are shut down new ones will set up shop.
however it appears that various governments are prepared to pay the price with the seizure of Megaupload and indictments of its figureheads wracking up a number of charges against it's founders including copyright infringement and 'internet piracy'.
in protest, Wikipedia among others staged a 24 hour blackout of its site as it and other sites dependent on user content will be heavily affected as such sites are at the mercy of their users who can and often do upload copyrighted material. the hacker collective anonymous also shut down the Department of justice website as well as a other involved in the legislation.
the biggest argument against SOPA is that it will engage in 'DNS blocking' which threatens to turn the open road of the information superhighway into one big roadblock. thereby undermining the other goals of cyber-security . As a measure of preventing online privacy, SOPA will mean the government using the same techniques hackers use in redirecting users from a site with pirated content to another, which the White house are against.
In sum, SOPA must be stopped because it at once stops free culture dead in its tracks and as a by product hinder free speech and expression on the net as it doesn't only hurt the sites involved but also hurts the important equation in this issues, the user.