NP.com joins Strike Against SOPA blackout

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NP.com joins Strike Against SOPA blackout

Postby Kris » Tue Jan 17, 2012 1:01 pm

On Wednesday the 18th NataliePortman.com will be offline. Here is why.

As some of you may know, there is one bill ("Protect IP Act" aka "PIPA") in the US congress up for vote next week. There is also the very publicized bill "Stop Online Piracy Act" aka "SOPA" that is currently being redrafted.

Either of these two bills will change the very foundation of the Internet - freedom.

Although we can agree with the spirit of those bills they are in their current format too broad and encompassing to be allowed to become laws. The result would be that sites like this one, Wikipedia, Google, Facebook, Twitter etc. could all be censured for the american public. The same censorship we in the west are so quick to condemn dictatorships for doing!

Therefore we join Wikipedia, Reddit, Mozilla, Wordpress and countless other sites around the world in a blackout day on Wednesday the 18th from 05:00 UTC. Most of us working on this site are non US-citizens so there is little we can do to stop these bills from becoming laws. But this we can do!

This is not an act of self preservation. If either of these bills become laws and the order to block this site comes down we have the will and means to get up a European based mirror in a matter of hours. It would leave all our US visitors in the dark while the rest of the world get's to read the feats of literature that are Dazzas updates. That is nothing short of censure!

For further information:
- Video about PIPA and SOPA
- Reddit
- Wikipedia
- Strike Against Sopa

//Kris

Disclaimer - As usual the opinions or actions on this website are not endorsed by Natalie Portman herself nor her agent or publicists!
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Re: NP.com joins Strike Against SOPA blackout

Postby Dazza » Tue Jan 17, 2012 2:06 pm

What's the bet Wednesday is a huge Natalie news day :P
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Re: NP.com joins Strike Against SOPA blackout

Postby Rachel » Tue Jan 17, 2012 6:34 pm

I love the idea of the blackout and I'm glad NP.com is joining in. :) It's really surprising how many people don't know about SOPA and PIPA.
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Re: NP.com joins Strike Against SOPA blackout

Postby buttsie » Wed Jan 18, 2012 5:18 am

If only the smart asses who have set up the pyramid cash reward filehosts like oron / filesonic etc had never started paying cash to the uploaders/bloggers etc this sort of law would still be in a think tank somewhere
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Re: NP.com joins Strike Against SOPA blackout

Postby Kris » Thu Jan 19, 2012 7:15 am

You are suggestion that these bills were formed in some valiant attempt at protecting people from being ripped of or scammed. That's some wishful thinking! Actually I think China has a more honorable reason to censor the internet for their citizens!

No, this is all about big companies like the movie/TV studios (Sony, Time Warner, Viacom, Walt Disney, NBC etc.) and fashion giants (Adidas, Dolce Gabana, Lacoste, L'Oreal, Nike, Ralph Lauren, Reebok, Estee Lauder etc.) and other companies who are victims of counterfeit (like Zippo, Pfizer etc.) to stop people from file sharing and selling counterfeit items and thereby loss if income. Yes, it's all about corporate greed. And no, I'm not anti-corporate or anti-greed. But when corporate greed becomes more important than my freedom of running this site, that's when I do have a problem!
(source)

As I said - I totally understand Sony being pissed that their movies are on Torrent sites. I totally get Nike being pissed that their products are being counterfeited with lower quality items. I totally get that Zippo wants to earn money. That is not the issue. Prepare a bill that doesn't make it possible for Viacom to shutdown my blog just because I happen to mention Newzbin and we won't have a problem!

Reddit had a pretty good breakdown of what the two bills actually meant for websites like ours. And it seemed I spoke too soon - since our domain name is registered with an american company (GoDaddy, who was a supporter of SOPA/PIPA but withdrew before Christmas) it would have been possible for "them" to seize "the site". So we'll have to see what we can do about that if PIPA goes through.

I apologize if it seems I'm using this website as platform for my opinions, that is not my intention. But this is important for the site and for the internet as a whole!
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Re: NP.com joins Strike Against SOPA blackout

Postby Kris » Thu Jan 19, 2012 7:31 am

Message from "Fight the Future":
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Today was nuts, right?

Google launched a petition. Wikipedia voted to shut itself off. Senators' websites went down just from the sheer surge of voters trying to write them. NYC and SF geeks had protests that packed city blocks.

You made history today: nothing like this has ever happened before. Tech companies and users teamed up. Tens of millions of people who make the internet what it is joined together to defend their freedoms. The free network defended itself. Whatever you call it, the bottom line is clear: from today forward, it will be much harder to mess up the internet.

The really crazy part? We might even win.

Approaching Monday's crucial Senate vote there are now 35 Senators publicly opposing PIPA. Last week there were 5. And it just takes just 41 solid "no" votes to permanently stall PIPA (and SOPA) in the Senate. What seemed like miles away a few weeks ago is now within reach.

But don't trust predictions. The forces behind SOPA & PIPA (mostly movie companies) can make small changes to these bills until they know they have the votes to pass. Members of Congress know SOPA & PIPA are unpopular, but they don't understand why--so they're easily duped by superficial changes. The Senate returns next week, and the next few days are critical. Here are two things to think about:

1. Plan on calling your Senator every day next week. Pick up the phone each morning and call your Senators' offices, until they vote "no" on cloture. If your site participated today, consider running a "Call the Senate" link all next week.

2. Tomorrow, drop in at your Senators' district offices. We don't have a cool map widget to show you the offices nearest you (we're too exhausted! any takers?). So do it the old fashioned way: use Google, or the phonebook to find the address, and just walk in, say you oppose PIPA, and urge the Senator to vote "no" on cloture. These drop-in visits make our spectacular online protests more tangible and credible.

That's it for now. Be proud and stay on it!

--Holmes, Tiffiniy, and the whole Fight for the Future team.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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Re: NP.com joins Strike Against SOPA blackout

Postby Dazza » Thu Jan 19, 2012 7:35 am

NP.COM saved the world!
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Re: NP.com joins Strike Against SOPA blackout

Postby buttsie » Thu Jan 19, 2012 9:22 am

Kris wrote:You are suggestion that these bills were formed in some valiant attempt at protecting people from being ripped of or scammed. That's some wishful thinking! Actually I think China has a more honorable reason to censor the internet for their citizens!




I agree the laws are completely over the top

My point was that when cash for sharing came in a few years its easy to see how it became the catalyst for this type of draconian law to even be considered

Sharing for simply sharing is a world away from posting for profit

I daresay the courts rejecting certain industry law suits notably youtubes battle with viacom from memory and the failure to take down filehosts domains just added to their level of frustration.



Couple of the more interesting points raised in the edited transcript


CNN spoke on Tuesday with Jimmy Wales, a co-founder of Wikipedia, to find out exactly why the site -- long a defender of independence -- is making its first leap into the scrum of U.S. politics.



CNN: There have been some really big statistics thrown around on the side of people who support these (anti-) piracy laws. Millions of jobs at stake. Billions of dollars in revenue loss for the U.S. economy. How do you respond to those figures?

Wales: There was an academic study done by the London School of Economics that says the figures thrown around by Hollywood are wishful thinking. Wishful thinking meaning if you count every single download and pretend the person would have paid full retail for something instead of just not consuming it, then you get some pretty large numbers. But, from the point of view of an economist, that isn't necessarily the right way to measure.

So I think those figures are radically overstated, particularly as we see that overall spending is up for entertainment.



CNN: I think a lot of people are still confused by the debate over these piracy laws. Can you explain your position in a clear, succinct way? Why are you so opposed to these (anti-piracy) laws that you would blackout your website?

Wales:

Within our community we're very strong defenders of copyright. We have very strict rules about obeying copyright and we don't link to materials that we know to be copyright infringement. That isn't really the issue.

The other side will try to paint this as anybody who's opposed to this must be making money off of piracy or be in favor of piracy. That isn't true.

The issue here is that this law is very badly written, very broadly overreaching and, in at least the Senate version, would include the creation of a DNS (domain name system) blocking regime that's technically identical to the one that's used by China.

I don't think that's the right way the U.S. needs to go in taking a leadership role on the Internet.



CNN: Do you think anything needs to be done to stop online piracy?

Wales: Within the U.S. the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (PDF) notice-and-takedown provisions have worked very well. The question of whether foreign sites pose a legitimate problem is I think something that has not be sufficiently studied. It is a valid question. But when it comes to First Amendment concerns, censoring the Internet is never going to be the right answer. The right answer would be something like the alternative OPEN Act.

http://www.keepthewebopen.com/

I'm not necessarily supporting that one, but I'm saying, 'Gee, we need to take a look at other possibilities here.' We also need to take a look at whether this is the right thing to be worrying about in the first place.

One of the things that we know is that spending on entertainment is actually up.

So I view this as a bit of a power grab for Hollywood, crying wolf over something that's not as big of a problem as they make it out to be.
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Re: NP.com joins Strike Against SOPA blackout

Postby Kitten » Fri Jan 20, 2012 10:33 pm

from Tumblr

Two days ago, you guys stepped up once again to show the world just how much we care about protecting the Internet. Together, we generated more than 140,000 calls to Senators, spent more than 4,200 hours on the phone with their staffers, and blacked out 650,000 of our blogs to make our point and inspire others to get involved. And what’s more, this was on top of the 90,000 calls we sent to members of the House of Representatives a month ago. Incredible.

It’s now becoming clear just how much impact our action is having. On January 18th, only 31 members of Congress opposed these bills. Just one day later, 101 members of Congress publicly stood with us in opposition. We are being heard.

And as of today, it looks like both the Senate PIPA and House SOPA bills have been shelved, for the moment. It seems pretty likely that the bills won’t pass as written—a big first win. We now hope that Internet companies, the creative community and the content industry join together to innovate and devise new partnerships to combat online piracy. We’re confident there are effective ways to do this without damaging the Internet or diminishing our freedoms.

You’ve made a big difference in keeping the Internet a safe and open place for creators. Thank you again.
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