If you tried to visit our site yesterday, you may have noticed that we were not our normal, cheery selves. Like a lot of the Internet, we chose to protest legislation that is currently being kicked around Congress. Remember that nice pop-up the first time you visited the site? Yeah, that’s what that was about. If you hadn’t heard of SOPA or PIPA before yesterday, hopefully you have heard of them now. These laws will basically break the Internet as we know it and take us back to 1994. I’m all for time travel, but not like this.
This is important because it affects everyone. Yes, I’m talking to you, and you, and you. Do you like visiting our site? Too bad. If either of these laws pass, there is a good chance that this very site will be taken down. Do you like visiting any site on the Internet? Yeah, they’ll probably be gone too. See what I’m talking about? Big-time bad… Under this law, if you post video of Michael Jackson’s Thriller video on the Web, you can go to prison for five years. That’s longer than the guy who killed him will be locked up for.
If you listen to our podcast, then you’ve heard me say that the Internet is like the Wild West. Imagine if there were no Wild West in American history. Just think of all of the John Wayne movies that would have never been made. No tales of Billy the Kid, Butch Cassidy, or Wyatt Earp. But more importantly, think of all of the innovation that would have never happened. Would we have a trans-continental railroad? Possibly not since there would be nothing west of the Mississippi River. Would we have discovered the Grand Canyon or Yellowstone? Who knows?
If you are still in the dark about what SOPA and PIPA are and what their effects on your life will be, here are some articles that I strongly suggest you take the time to read. The people who wrote the articles are far more eloquent that I am and have a much better understanding of these laws than I do so take a minute and click on the links.
- Why SOPA Is Dangerous
- SOPA Will Take Us Back to the Dark Ages
- Today the US Senate is considering legislation that would destroy the free and open Internet.
And since I understand that sometimes it’s easier to watch the movie than it is to read the book, here is a very well done cinematic production courtesy of YouTube. (Which, I should mention, would be destroyed should SOPA or PIPA become law.)
If you haven’t done so already, please take a moment to call call those who allegedly represent you in Washington and let them know that you oppose what they are trying to do. Unless, of course, you hate free speech and innovation. Then, by all means, continue to do nothing as your rights are stripped away by greedy politicians.