Tuesday, 29 November 2011

The SOPA Bill

So there's been a lot of talk about the SOPA Bill or (Stop Online Piracy Act.) For those of you who are unaware as to what this exactly is; "The bill would allow the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), 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 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 felony. 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.[4]"

Now to put this into other terms; if this goes through, say goodbye to the internet. Yes, yes, I know what you’ll say; “This only ascertains to the U.S.” Although this may be true, it’s not a valid argument when you consider that in terms of Piracy laws, the US seems to be the trend setter. Although we Canadians have been lucky so far as to be protected by sharing intellectual property as long as it’s not sold, this will soon change. This is especially true with the now Harper majority, who seems to do anything to appease the Americans.

Perhaps the better question then is; will this go through? In response to that, I’d like to list who exactly is backing each side, as we all know the Western world is a plutocracy, not a democracy, so let us follow the money trail to the special interest groups. Now although usually the bills that serve to strip us of rights and freedoms are backed by all the interest groups, this one is different in that the Anti-SOPA bill side is actually headed by some of the
largest companies in the world. To name a few; Google, Facebook, Twitter, Zynga, eBay, Mozilla, Yahoo, AOL, and LinkedIn. No, these aren’t small fishes from a big ocean; these companies are the great white sharks from your back yard swimming pool.

That being said, on top of the fact that the public largely disagrees with this bill, the companies that are against it far outweigh those for it. To just put this into terms; Facebook is pulling in well over 1 billion each year, and was valued over 50 last year. Google on the other hand made 29 billion in 2010. If money is the root of change in our society, then you can all be assured that SOPA will never pass through.

Should it? Will it? Let me hear from you.

No comments:

Post a Comment