“Internet Blackout” delivers serious blow to SOPA and PIPA

Internet Strike

In a statement just released by Lamar Smith, the indefinite postponement of SOPA and PIPA has been confirmed:

I have heard from the critics and I take seriously their concerns regarding proposed legislation to address the problem of online piracy. It is clear that we need to revisit the approach on how best to address the problem of foreign thieves that steal and sell American inventions and products.

With both PIPA and it’s better known counterpart SOPA postponed, we can finally claim a victory in the war on Internet censorship.

The coordinated protests on January 18th sent a very clear message about how the American people feel about Internet censorship, and was directly responsible for a number of once outspoken SOPA/PIPA supporters changing their stance. I personally contacted my state Senators and Representative with my thoughts against the current Internet censorship bills being considered and got positive responses back, with pledges to appose any bill which unnecessarily limited online freedoms. I have no doubt in my mind that the “Internet Blackout” will be considered a turning point for digital freedom for decades to come.

What’s next?

With SOPA and PIPA out of the running, at least in their current forms, we can breathe easier for a bit. But make no mistake that the strong supporters of these bills haven’t gone way, and will attempt to resurrect this legislation in some form or another. The community should now be focused on supporting online piracy legislation which actually works, and doesn’t give the government powers that they shouldn’t have.

If you were willing to contact your local Representatives over SOPA/PIPA, I urge you to look into new legislation such as the “OPEN Act”, which aims to take the opinion and concerns of the Internet community into account and deliver the most effective anti-piracy legislation possible, while preserving the online freedoms of the individual:

http://keepthewebopen.com/


Tom Nardi

Tom is a Network Engineer with focus on GNU/Linux and open source software. He is a frequent submitter to "2600", and maintains a personal site of his projects and areas of research at: www.digifail.com .

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