Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Anti-SOPA Demonstrations in Pictures

Today, January 19, 2012 is a worldwide anti-SOPA day. 

SOPA is causing a big debate.  Today, several major Internet sources are protesting.  (See below for examples--in Pictures.)

SOPA is the Stop Online Piracy Act and is part of a law that the US government is looking to sign.  Well, actually there is a debate.

There is a lot of theft.  Businesses are building online products and storing data, only to have their work stolen by someone to be resold for a cheaper price.

Taxes cannot be collected on illegal activity, and this law would permit the government to shut down guilty websites or restrict access.

Why not SOPA?
While taking steps to stop theft sound good, how do you effectively monitor that?

Freedom is the biggest issue here.  If the government can control websites, it also restricts the freedom of the information that people publish on the Internet.

Some regulation might be good (protection), but too much is always too much (meddling).

Protests throughout the Internet

So the debate grows, and several major Internet sources are using clever ways to protest.
Google sends a clever message against "censorship."

Google "blacked out" their own name, and they have a message asking, "Please don't censor the web."
Wikipedia took over its main page to demonstrate a point against Internet censorship.
Wikipedia sent a stronger message.  They outright do not let anyone use the web.  If you try to use any of their pages, after 2 seconds (or so) it redirects you to this page.
Wikipedia asks you to inform your government representatives--and they make it easy for you to contact them. posted a message that they will stop operating in protest of SOPA. is stating its position pretty clearly. greets you with this on its main site.  As of this writing, I am not sure whether people will be able to use WordPress installed websites, and I do not know whether they will be able to install WordPress into new websites today.

Further down the site, they provide easy to complete protest forms to send to your representatives, but they take it a step further.  They also offer plug-ins that people can use to post on THEIR websites--making it easy for THEIR visitors to complete this same form.

Websites Staging a Protest AGAINST SOPA

Click HERE for a List of Websites staging a protest AGAINST SOPA.
(a Mashable post by Zachary Sniderman)

Companies/Organizations that are AGAINST SOPA

Click HERE to see a list of companies and organizations that publicly SUPPORT SOPA
(an IB Times post by Connor Adams Sheets)

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  1. One really needs to support the Wikipedia protest, the picture size may be the other side round. Sopa would make it difficult, if not impossible, for search engines to operate, particularly for for an generic filesearch engine, like us. When crawling the Internet automatically for data and information, and offering them to the public for search purposes, it is technically just not possible to scan all links for any possible copyright violations.

    1. Thanks for taking time to notice and comment on my SOPA post.

      I know that since I use the Internet a lot to find and share information, I would like to see as few restrictions as possible. I enjoy the wild but true freedom that many of us have on the Internet.

      However, if I owned a business which kept getting pilfered, I probably become more open to regulation designed to protect me and my business.

      I think that the basic concept is good. If people are not compensated properly for providing top-notch work, then--for most people--motivation falls and everyone receives much less high quality work.

      I think that we all want "good" regulation--not "bad" regulation.

      The biggest problem that I see is that it is awfully tough to create regulation that benefits many people, especially when you have to create laws that affect everyone. Those laws tend to be complex, having to cover EVERY contingency.

      It would be much better if we could write an effective law that said....


      However, you have to account for the system scammers--and people each politician has to appease for reelection.

      Common Sense does not always equal Common Courtesy.

      Is something needed? Probably.

      Is the government likely to do it right? Probably not.

      The debate continues.

      Despite my long post, I really appreciate your comment. I would like to get as much insight into this as possible. It's a tricky topic that won't disappear after today, this week, or even this year.


Hey there! Thank you for taking time to read my post and share your thoughts with me and my other readers. I'm always tickled when I get a non-SPAM comment. Honestly, sometimes I'm even okay with some borderline SPAM.

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