Monday, January 02, 2012

Protect the internet against censorship! Stop the Stop Online Piracy act - some tips for all of us

Consumer action urgently required to help stop the Stop Online Piracy Act - arguably the worst thing every proposed for the internet. Librarians and scholars take note: there are publishers on the list of SOPA supporters helpfully provided by the U.S. Congress through gizmodo. These include Elsevier, Macmillan (owner of Nature Publishing Group, Cengage Learning, McGraw-Hill Educational, Pearson Educational, and Wolters Kluwers Health, to name a few. So far consumer action has helped to convince godaddy, sony and nintendo to drop out of the list of SOPA supporters!  Gizmodo has helpfully provided contact information for all SOPA supporters.  While political advocacy may be best left to U.S. citizens, all of us can participate in consumer advocacy!

Excerpt from Ars Technica
Imagine a world in which any intellectual property holder can, without ever appearing before a judge or setting foot in a courtroom, shut down any website's online advertising programs and block access to credit card payments. The credit card processors and the advertising networks would be required to take quick action against the named website; only the filing of a "counter notification" by the website could get service restored.
Update January 2: have the SOPA supporters even thought this through? Wouldn't this mean that the Elsevier presence in the U.S. could be stopped on the basis of one claim of copyright infringement on the Elsevier website?