Congress today is debating SOPA (or the Stop Online Piracy Act) – a serious piece of legislation that creates a “Great Firewall of China” type situation in the US. Supporters of this law claim SOPA targets “rogue” foreign websites that encourage piracy, but the bill’s vague language creates the necessary tools to silence free speech on the internet.
Under this new law, an individual or corporation can simply send a letter, and a site’s DNS (this is what turns “blog.ryandubois.net” into a machine address) and ISP (providing the physical connection to the internet) can be required to shut that site down, without ever setting foot in court.
This kind of “guilty until proven innocent” tactic has been seen before with DMCA takedown notices (which, we all know, are never, ever abused – (tongue in cheek)). This threatens the very fabric of the internet (DNS, and the internet itself, were created to prevent exactly this kind of usage – the internet is designed to route around any blockages automatically – congress is undermining the fabric of the internet, as if its any of their business).
The worse part is that this law can also outlaw circumvention tools (again, very vague language that could conceivably include VPN tunnels, or Tor bridges, both of which have very legitimate uses).
Wanna take action against this? Call your rep today!Tweet