SOPA Put On Hold, But For How Long

Internet downloading, pirating, sharing, streaming.  It doesn’t matter what name you use to define it, either way the government wants to put a stop to it.  Last week Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) was discussed in congress as a means to expand the arm of law enforcement  to stop online sharing of intellectual properties.  The bill also includes a provision that expands existing criminal laws for online streaming.  While many of you may think this sounds perfectly fair and reasonable you must think of the bigger picture.  Overall the issue with SOPA is its blatant infringement on our first amendment rights.  To try to govern the internet and its services would not only do severe damage to internet revenue but would also be a huge blow to innovation, not to mention our constitutional rights.  This bill is no more a means to stop the sharing of intellectual properties than it is to maximize profits for the music and film industries.  It is no secret that revenues have been on a steady and consistent decline for years and this is the response of said industries.  Google, Wikipedia, Reddit and numerous other websites participated in an internet blackout of sorts in order to display their disapproval of the actions being taken by our government.  The hacking group Anonymous went as far as shutting down government run websites as well as any other pro-SOPA websites after the popular streaming site Megaupload had its servers shut down.  With a few hours megauploads servers were back online.  It is sad that we find ourselves in the position that profits have the potential to infringe on our rights, but it’s not unexpected.  I am sure that we haven’t heard the last of SOPA, and if it isn’t the bill that stops the actions that music and film industries are so vehemently fighting it’s only a matter of time before a new one is introduced.  In the meantime we should enjoy the freedoms being granted to us and watch whatever shows we can today, because for all you know tomorrow it could all be taken away for the sake of making more money.

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