There was bill that was introduced to the United States government late last year called the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), which proposed to fight theft against intellectual property. SOPA sought to censor the Internet, which is similar to a bill called the Protect IP Act (PIPA), which also seeks similar changes. These bills would have affected the intellectual property market and corresponding industries. These bills will affect many of the popular websites known to my generation, such as Google, Youtube, Facebook, Tumblr, and so on. SOPA and PIPA have raised awareness in our communities and as a result, an overwhelming protest by over 7 million people on the Internet caused these bills to recede.
The main goal of SOPA was to protect intellectual property. All my life I have been able to download all of the songs I liked through torrent sharing programs on the Internet. If SOPA were to be passed, the ability to download and stream music for free would not be the same. This bill would not only affect the music industry, but also many of the search engines like Google. SOPA would seek to limit the results of a search, and thus limiting our knowledge. The Internet has provided free and open communication for us all, but with censorship brought into the picture, we would not be able to access many of the websites that allow us to communicate to each other.
SOPA and PIPA sought to censor the Internet mostly for the entertainment industries. Majority of the members of the U.S. legislature supported these bills so I had become quite worried that SOPA would be passed. Although there were many senators supporting this bill, many people in the community were fighting back. In response to these bills, a few websites like Wikipedia closed down to raise awareness for these bills. When I tried to access Wikipedia that same day, there was just an image of a banner that stated, “Imaging a world without free knowledge”.
There were some good motives... [continues]
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