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SOPA and PIPA Abandoned-Reaction And Concerns.


Lets get this out the way first. Under no circumstance is piracy forgiveable. The fact that people profit or manipulate someone else’s product, creative work etc for what is essentially theft is wrong. In this modern age where the internet is host to various manipulations and various forms of piracy theft, it seems right to regulate internet traffic to monitor piracy. This is currently what was formerly being put into place in America with the bills; “SOPA” and “PIPA.”

These bills though have been abandoned as of today through widespread rejection and disapproval with the final nail in the coffin being Lamar Smith putting the bill on permanent hiatus after PIPA earlier in the week was withdrawn. The bills promised to retain American intellectual property+rights yet was seen to limit creative expression that is commonly found everywhere on the internet. There was one casualty in the short time SOPA+PIPA were in discussion which was megaupload. A cyber cloud storage site, it was also home to “pirates” as they would be called, (see what I did there?), could view/obtain content for free. There are however numerous users that have used the site correctly and most importantly legally. What will be interesting to see though is the reaction this gets over the coming weeks, months from the users and how the American’s will respond.

So with the closure of the bills (for now anyway), the internet cries: Hurrah! Internet wins! While I agree that the support of the internet has not gone unnoticed from millions of people during the blackout stages (162 million people approximately visited wikipedia) in protest of the bills despite the site being down, it shows worrying signs for the future. Such an aggressive bill(s) to regulate or more appriopriately “control” the internet is worrying. I like creative expression, freedom of speech and a voice.

The internet can be just that for any singular person that accesses it. It is a powerful tool for any person and serves god given rights (in a way). America in trying to protect piracy has seen it as piracy comes into freedom of speech+creative expression. So mock-up pictures (even if you did it in paint) would be classed as illegal. Its like drawing a moustache on your mate’s photo but then you get fined for it. Thats the harsh reality and despite this not going through, I believe the foundations have been set. Their are some countries that control their local internet (China for instance) but they are a communist nation (big brother in essence).

For the English speaking, we are a democracy and freedom of speech is part of humanity. While I applaud a brave attempt from the Americans in trying, the manner in which they set out was worrying and amendments must be made to make it fairer to all while not infringing basic human rights. The publicity also makes me believe that America is trying to rule the world and the fact megaupload’s owner is from New Zealand (not America-formerly part of the commonwealth) means there must be loopholes somewhere and that is there for America to exploit or any other nation possibly. For now, the internet is free (sort of) from extreme control. But in the short space of time SOPA/PIPA was publicised, they took a high profile casualty that shows and that this is not over.


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