Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA): Internet Censorship Details — Should You Be Concerned?

Posted on 18 November 2011 by author

We cannot deny the fact that the internet is one of the most powerful tools that has made our lives convenient in a number of ways. It has become the ultimate source of information nowadays and it is not really surprising at all why a lot of people surf the net almost every day and because of this the congress is currently holding a series of hearings that intend to pass a bill that will empower various companies and organizations to censor and protect the internet and its users from online piracy. This bill that we are talking about is the “Stop Online Piracy Act” or SOPA.

This bill which is also known as the H.R. 2361 was introduced in the US House of the Representatives last October 26, 2011 as initiated by Representative Lamar Smith together with a bipartisan group consisting of 12 co-sponsors. This bill has been divided into two titles – the first one focusing on how to combat foreign rogue sites that enable copyright infringement, while the second one focuses on increasing the penalty for online piracy. Court hearing has been scheduled last November 16.

This Stop Online Piracy Act is similar to other bills in such as way that it also sounds to be something positive, but the truth is that it has also some negative effect on the internet that could eventually change it into something different as the way we know it. Apparently, this bill will give power to the entertainment companies to censor sites that allegedly deals with engaging in and enabling and facilitating copyright infringement and will cover sites that are mostly visited everyday like Facebook and Twitter.

The idea behind this bill may sound reasonable at first, but as you go through the details of the bill you will also learn that it has some negative effects as well. Of course, no one is excited about the thought of downloading contents without the permission of the site itself or what we refer to as online piracy. This bill will make it possible for companies to block the domain names of certain websites that are capable of promoting or encouraging copyright infringement. However, this bill does not have the power to block numeric IP address.

So what can you say about this bill? Are you in favor of this bill?


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