5 of the best online SOPA/PIPA protests
Why’s the internet broken? Well, the US government – under pressure from the music and film industries – has drafted a couple of laws to discourage piracy.
One is SOPA, the Stop Online Piracy Act, and the other is PIPA (Protect IP Act). Between them, these laws could shut down sites that have done nothing wrong, and jeopardise any site that links outside its own domain.
Naturally, that’s not the intention, but the protests we’re seeing reflect that people want the laws governing internetville to be drawn up sensibly, not thrust out in knee-jerk legislation. Above all, the freedom of the World Wide Web is under threat. These are the five best protests we’ve seen.
“Students, journalists and other plagiarists: beware.” That’s how the Today programme on BBC Radio 4 introduced the story of Wikipedia blacking out for 24 hours. Some faith they’ve got in their reporters. But Wikipedia is used by politicians, researchers, teachers and – yes – journalists. And everyone else. The fact that Wikipedia’s blackout can be easily overridden does little to soften the blow Wikimedia has dealt SOPA/PIPA’s proponents by stealing the lion’s share of the headlines. Well, what else were journalists going to be able to write about? Visit the page