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SOPA

  1. Internet Freedom Day Marks One Year Anniversary of Internet Protests

    One year ago today, the Internet went dark. The reasons aren't even that complicated: A massive number of influential Internet denizens, like Wikipedia, were protesting SOPA at the time. The best part? It totally worked. Lawmakers listened, albeit likely reluctantly, to their constituents and quickly withdrew support from the controversial bill. That doesn't mean new efforts to enact similarly terrible legislation have been prevented, though. So, celebrate Internet Freedom Day with us, and at least reflect on all that's happened.

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  2. SOPA Returns as Ransomware Virus, Highlights Just How Horrible the Bill Actually Was

    The Stop Online Piracy Act received a lot of attention when Congress was trying to push it through under the radar. Though the bill eventually floundered, the threat it represents is still there, lingering on the peripheries of the Internet. The fear is that some kind of Internet regulation in regards to copyright will almost inevitably be passed as lobbyists will continue to push such measures. A computer virus now exists that takes advantage of this dread by implying SOPA is in effect and infected users have been caught in an act of copyright infringement.

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  3. Canadian Intellectual Property Document Reads Like Extremist Wishlist

    In the ever-constant attempt to curb counterfeiting and piracy, Canada's lead intellectual property lobby group, the Canadian IP Council, has released a document titled Counterfeiting in the Canadian Market: How Do We Stop It? detailing the changes it believes should be enacted by the Canadian government to ensure the continued prominence of legal goods. This includes such measures as SOPA-style blocking of websites, the implementation of ACTA, and jail time for downloaders.

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  4. Don’t Worry, President Obama Will Veto CISPA — Unless the Senate Has a Different Version

    Rights of Passage

    Your "small government" lawmakers are at it again, passing laws in the U.S. House of Representatives that give the government -- namely, agencies such as the Department of Homeland Security and the National Security Agency -- the power to basically obliterate your privacy -- in this case, via private businesses, namely large corporations. The good news is that President Obama has threatened to veto the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) if it made its way through Congress, due to its vastly overreaching provisions. However, while he has come out against the House bill, what if the Senate tones things down a bit?

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  5. This Is A Doo-Wop Love Song To The Internet [VIDEO]

    the internet is serious business

    Haven't we all sung to the internet at one point or another? Written by Hannah Hart, "Oh, Internet" started out as an anti-SOPA song "but turned into so much more." Favorite line? "You just don't get it, cause you're not on Reddit." And yes, it is available on iTunes. Oh, internet. (via The Daily What)

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  6. Things We Saw Today: Neil Gaiman’s Tribute to the Chinese New Year

    Things We Saw Today

    Neil Gaiman has drawn up his own tribute to the Year of the Dragon (a "wobbly dragon"), and we believe this is relevant to your interests. More about this from the author after the jump!

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  7. SOPA is Off the Table Again, Internet is 2 for 2

    After going from the floor, to the shelf, and back to the table, SOPA has been delayed again. This means that for the first time in months, neither PIPA nor SOPA are on an active course to being passed. This is literally the best reaction to the SOPA blackouts than anyone could reasonably expect. Shortly after PIPA was delayed, Representative Lamar Smith -- in an oddly familiar announcement -- said that SOPA will be off the table until a concensus can be reached and that nerd expert opinions will be seriously considered.

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  8. Another One Bites the Dust (For Now): PIPA Vote Postponed, SOPA “On Hold”

    Rights of Passage

    While the list of lawmakers opposing the internet censorship bills PIPA and SOPA continues to grow, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) tweeted this morning that he will be postponing the January 24 vote. No new date has set, but this follows his decision not to force Democrats to vote for the bill in order to prevent a potential veto by President Obama. It also appears that SOPA's lead sponsor in the House, Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX), has put the bill on hold following Reid's announcement. However, Reid is pledging to continue working on the bill and released a statement about his intentions. Unfortunately, his intentions still involve voting on and passing PIPA in some shape or form. Let's also point out the irony of Harry Reid making this announcement on a site that thrives on sharing so much copyrighted material.

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  9. PIPA Debate Postponed Until Compromise

    The SOPA blackouts seem to have worked, ladies and gentlemen: The Senate hearing on the Protect-IP Act has been postponed by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, and will not resume until some sort of compromise is reached. After the SOPA blackouts, support for PIPA dwindled, with at least a dozen Senators announcing their opposition and all four GOP candidates coming out against it during last night's presidential debates.

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  10. Supreme Court Rules Congress Can Remove Works From Public Domain

    While the majority of the Internet rambled on and on about SOPA and PIPA yesterday (Geekosystem included), an interestingly related piece of legislation slipped through in the background. Yesterday, the Supreme Court ruled that Congress has the authority to remove works from the public domain. That is to say that the public domain is not “territory that works may never exit," contrary to common understanding.

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  11. Dropping Like Flies: List of Defecting PIPA/SOPA Supporters (and Co-Sponsors) Grows

    Rights of Passage

    The internet protest is over, and you can finally use Wikipedia without having to look at a gross, spooky cached page. (You knew you could do that, right? Oh, well, doesn't matter now.) But what was the real impact of the swath of blackouts on the web? Was is much ado about nothing? And what could have been the most significant reaction to this widespread outcry? In fact, something pretty important happened: the people responsible for actually voting on the bill and turning it into the law of the land have decided not to support it. Even lawmakers who co-sponsored the bill have taken their names off and withdrawn their support. That's wonderful! And it was also nice of them that they were so honest about apparently not reading the bill they'd initially supported in the first place. Transparency!

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  12. The Real Reason We Don’t Need SOPA or PIPA: We Already Have Broken Copyright Law, DMCA

    Now don't get me wrong, there are awful, awful aspects to both SOPA and PIPA. The prospect of DNS blocking is egregious censorship. The prospect of cutting off funds and ad revenue to "infringers" without due process is egregious. Even without those provisions, though, we still don't need or want SOPA or PIPA. Why? Because we already have dangerously broken copyright law: The Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

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  13. Watch 64 Horror Films In Five Minutes With The Lights On

    Bloody Good Fun

    Here's a scary (and extremely well done) YouTube video made up of 64 different horror films. (Find the complete movie/music list here) You know what else is scary? If SOPA/PIPA passes, videos like this wouldn't exist and/or we'd be in trouble just for posting it. Food for thought tonight. (via Blastr)

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  14. Mark Zuckerberg Comes Out Against SOPA, PIPA

    Up until now, Facebook has been pretty quietly anti-SOPA. Sure, they've been anti-SOPA from the start, but in a very reserved, quietly private way. They wouldn't just up and tell you; you'd have to look into yourself. For instance, they were one of the Internet giants who took out that full page ad, and one of the ones who wrote that letter. They were even one of the companies reportedly considering the nuclear option. Nonetheless, they hadn't public addressed users, until today.

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  15. Choose Your Own PIPA-SOPA Protest Adventure [Interactive Flowchart]

    Maybe by now we've all saturated the Internet with so much anti-SOPA, anti-PIPA content that you've finally decided you want to do something about stopping these bills, even if it's just to get everyone to shut up already and talk about something else. Great, but what steps can you take, and where can you get the information to take those steps? Well, this super fantastic interactive flowchart from Ape Con Myth will walk you through the steps and direct you to where you need to be to know what you need to know and do what you need to do. Step up everybody, and then we can all go back to talking about video games and silly cats again. Check out the chart after the jump.

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  16. The Day the LOLcats Died [Video]

    In the time-honored fashion of making a parody of American Pie, Chris Parker gets on the YouTube and sings out against SOPA and PIPA. Sure, a little cheesy, but hey, SOPA and PIPA would ruin all the Internets, and Parker and his crew made a song about that.

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  17. MPAA Releases Statement About Blackouts, World Gags on Irony

    So the MPAA did release a statement saying they were now against DNS blocking. Of course, just like our buddy Representative Lamar Smith who brought back SOPA after seeming to back off, the MPAA is right back to flailing its arms and pouting in the face of the SOPA blackouts. Here, this tweet from sister-group the RIAA does a good job of setting the general mood. Yesterday, the MPAA released a statement that is so self-absorbed, so self-serving, so wrought with irony that I'm not even going to bother providing any further commentary. It speaks for itself.

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  18. Which Sites Are Going Black to Protest SOPA/PIPA?

    Rights of Passage

    If you found yourself wondering what the name of the second general of the Dutch Revolution was, or if that was even real, and you ventured on over to Wikipedia to look it up, you probably noticed that the site looked different today. Different, as in blacked out. And then you may or may not have panicked, because now how would you satisfy you thirst for random trivia that is probably somewhere else on the internet, but your go-to site has shut itself down, and now your brain must find something else to do for the next -- hey, someone mentioned you on Twitter. You should check that out. Anyway, you most likely heard about this earlier in the week, when the site's administrators announced that in protest of the highly controversial internet censorship bills SOPA and PIPA, they would "censor" their own site for 24 hours. But Wikipedia is not the only site protesting today. After the jump, find out who else has shut themselves down, and see what the internet will look like should these bills become law.

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  19. How SOPA and PIPA Will Break the Internet [Video]

    Sure, we have a veritable library of posts explaining what's wrong with SOPA and PIPA, what's wrong with the way they're being approached, what's wrong with the current copyright law they're building on, and anything else you might want to know. But what if you don't like reading words? Well, here's a video that sums up the big, important points. Knowledge is power, and knowing is half the battle, right? So get battlin' folks.

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  20. How to Access Wikipedia During Its SOPA Blackout

    If you're a person who feels the need to use something right when it turns out you can't, or you're the type of person that must know everything about everything when it comes up in conversation, then the Wikipedia SOPA protest blackout is probably an obnoxious inconvenience, though it is happening in the name of all that is good. Fortunately for Wikipedia enthusiasts who can't live without learning all they can about Bruce Willis and his studio albums, Wikipedia is still accessible during its blackout protest. Head on past the break to find out how.

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