On January 18th, major sites all over the Internet plan to go black in protest against SOPA and PIPA. Some of the largest sites participating include: Google (which modified their homepage in support), Wikipedia (which is reportedly used by an estimated 365 million readers worldwide), Reddit (one of the first to join the strike), and Mozilla. You can view the full list of participants on SOPAstrike.com
SOPA, the Stop Online Piracy Act, and PIPA, the Protect-IP Act, are the polarizing anti-piracy legislation that are purported to be a way to crack down on online copyright infringement. The bill however, does much more than stop piracy though. According to AmericanCensorship.org, the bill instead gives the government and corporations the power to to take down any to “take down virtually any website, create new liabilities and uncertainties for web innovators, and make the web less safe. According to the varied and multitudinous reasons large numbers of sites and individuals are opposed to the bill, it betrays basic American tenets, such as free speech, prosperity, and national security. On top of all that, cybersecurity experts say it wouldn’t stop copyright infringement. The legislation is backed and largely written by the MPAA, as they have said in media reports.”
The senate had been scheduled to vote on its version of the internet censorship bill on Tuesday, January 24th, but the bill has been put on hold “until consensus is reached”, according to House Oversight Chairman Darrell Issa.
The issue was all over domain news recently when thousands of GoDaddy customers jumped shipped in protest over the company’s pro-SOPA position. GoDaddy quickly changed its stance and now says the company is against the legislation, but the change didn’t come quickly enough. Tucows and NameCheap are both participating in the strike.
To sign Google’s petition against the legislation click here.