SOPA blackout protests yield results

Thursday, 19th January 2012 21:48 GMT By Brenna Hillier

This week’s Internet blackout protests against the Stop Online Piracy (SOPA) and Protect IP (PIPA) acts preceded a number of capitulations from key US politicians.

Eurogamer reports PIPA co-sponsors, Florida senator Marco Rubio and Missouri senator Roy Blunt, have both reversed position, along with Utah senator Orrin Hatch, the Democrats’ Ben Cardin and the Republican party.

On the SOPA side, Republican house members Ben Quayle of Arizona, Dennis Ross of Florida and Lee Terry of Nebraska withdrew support.

Ars Technica reports Lamar Smith, the Texan Republican who has been a primary driving force of SOPA, has remained firm in the face of dwindling support.

“I realize some people are nervous because of misinformation about this bill, but I am confident that ultimately the facts will overcome fears,” he wrote.

“Contrary to critics’ claims, SOPA does not censor the Internet. It only targets activity that is already illegal, and only targets foreign websites that steal and sell America’s technology, inventions and products.”

Smith has indicated he is willing to address concerns over the acts intricacies, but is clearly fairly confident the central premises are in the right.

A number of developers and games media outlets went dark to protest the controversial legislation, despite the ESA’s support of both proposed acts.



  1. The_Red

    While this could be considered good news, this could also mean that those 13 or so ex-SOPA-supporters may just be acting that way till the internet has calmed down. They’ll probably swap two lines and call it “The New and Improved SOPA” and repeat the whole story.

    Either way, hopefully the sites that participated in the blackout are ready to the this again soon.

    #1 3 years ago
  2. LOLshock94

    SOPA took down megauploader SOPA are cunts

    #2 3 years ago
  3. freedoms_stain

    @2, that’s fucking amazing, a bill that hasn’t been written did something! Well, at least we know time travel is in the cards for the future now.

    #3 3 years ago
  4. LOLshock94

    @3 its true there fucking aliens

    #4 3 years ago
  5. deathgaze

    While it’s good to see that the blackouts had some effect, I also have to admit that Smith is somewhat right. Many of the organizations that took part in the blackout didn’t really tell the whole truth about the bills. For example, take the fact that both bills exclude American domain names from being eligible ‘targets’ of action. Nobody that I could see pointed this out on their blackout pages.

    Regardless, there’s still plenty in the bills not to like. If Hollywood doesn’t like a particular site, it can still carry out it’s money-stopping and mandatory search de-listings. That’s the real danger. If you block out significant non-infringing speech from being found on, say Google, then you’re illegally blocking Google’s right to free speech. If the site is intended to be legitimate, you may have just cost someone his lively hood and denied him any hope of restoring his search-ability and monetization streams.

    #5 3 years ago
  6. Moonwalker1982

    “I realize some people are nervous because of misinformation about this bill, but I am confident that ultimately the facts will overcome fears,” he wrote.

    Yeah dude….yeah right!

    #6 3 years ago
  7. Yoshi

    What we really need to do is hurt their high supporters like ESA (Guys who do E3). If developers, publishers, and everyone else who visit and get involved in E3 stop until ESA removes itself from supporting SOPA and PIPA we may get somewhere as E3 is their biggest revenue stream. And those cunts over at ESA are saying they represent gamers but they don’t.

    #7 3 years ago
  8. DSB

    Ultimately the basis of the bill is flawed, so it stands to reason that most of the content will be too. It’s basic misdirection.

    This is much less about piracy and more about the movie industry betting on lousy movies, and completely failing to see the overwhelming demand for new distribution models.

    Just like the music industry. Nobody likes to fail miserably at what they do, and of course piracy is just adding insult to injury, but it’s ultimately down to their own arrogance and stupidity.

    The music industry keeps making albums of which there are maybe 2-3 songs that are actually worth listening to. The other 7 are made-to-order by some faceless ghostwriter, peddling mediocre material left and right like an STD with absolutely no interest in it, beyond making a decent living.

    That’s simply not going to make people pay 10-15 dollars for a cheap piece of plastic full of filler. Or upwards of about 30 dollars if you live in some places in Europe. You cannot possibly run an industry that way.

    I guess the videogame industry learned from the Atari crash in that sense.

    The same can’t be said for the movie industry though. What kind of fully disabled retard bets on The Sitter and charges 20 bucks for a DVD afterwards? Not to mention those extortionist DVD/Bluray bundles.

    Honestly I’m surprised that most music and movie execs manage to get themselves dressed in the morning. They have absolutely no clue who they’re selling to, and they’re simply using pirates as an excuse for losing touch.

    #8 3 years ago
  9. IL DUCE

    The bill is a step in the right direction but oversteps it’s boundaries by a million miles…there’s no chance it passes

    #9 3 years ago
  10. YoungZer0

    @9: If something like NDAA can pass, so can this.

    #10 3 years ago

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