Note: So I wrote the below post in advanced, before websites agreed to blackout for SOPA today. Back then, it was clever. Now it just comes off as repetitive. But you’re going to read it anyways, and you’re going to read it good. Also, some of the links don’t work because the sites are down for the protest. Ironic.
Something is wrong. If you commit second degree murder in the USA, you could get a $25,000 fine, and/or 4-15 years in prison. If you download 24 songs from Kazaa, you will get a $2 million fine. Now I’ve ranted about piracy before, so instead of making you skim another post of rage, I’ll just talk about SOPA.
SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) was introduced in the USA by the devil. The idea behind it is that if you link, on purpose or by accident, to any other site that also links or has something related to piracy, you’re going to get in trouble. You can imagine what this would do to Google, who’s entire business is linking to things. Thankfully, due to public outrage and pictures of kittens everywhere blacking out, SOPA has been temporarily shelved. This doesn’t mean it’s dead though; it will come back, and there is a sister bill called PIPA which is still around.
You may wonder, as I did, why the US government would introduce a bill that is clearly unfavourable to its citizens. The answer is money. Here is an example of some “donations” made to US senators by corporations which would benefit from SOPA. I put donations in quotes there because it’s really a bribe, to ensure they vote the right way:
- Sen. Harry Reid [D, NV] $3,502,624
- Sen. Charles Schumer [D, NY] $2,648,770
- Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand [D, NY] $2,080,651
All of this may come off as me supporting piracy, which is not the case. I don’t think things should be free when someone worked so hard to create it, but I do think the punishment right now is dictated not by fairness, but by greed. And I think this is because some corporations refuse to adapt to a new reality, where consumers get things fast and cheap.
- Original Video Post – Extra Credits: Season 3, Ep. 24a – Stand Together: The Gaming Community vs SOPA and PIPA
- Sign a petition to have the ESA remove their support from SOPA/PIPA here
- Sign Google’s petition – End Piracy, Not Liberty – here