SOPA and PIPA are Shelved by the US Congress

by JoHarrington

After an unprecedented wave of global protest, the two pieces of legislation at the centre of the storm were finally dropped.

It was the news that everyone was waiting for. The binary cheers flashed through cyberspace, as people realized that the strike had been successful.

An unprecedented level of participation had made it the largest strike action in history. Not just internet history, but the actual world too.

All over the world, websites had gone off-line, demonstrating precisely how the web would look after SOPA and PIPA. Senators and Congress representatives had their 'phones ring off their hooks in response. Two days later, the bills were gone.

Reid and Smith Publicly Pull Their Controversial Bills

SOPA and PIPA had been widely protested on the internet. It became political suicide to even consider debating these Acts.

Photo: US CongressJust two days after the biggest strike in world history, US Congressional representatives have bowed to public pressure.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced on Twitter that proceedings on Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA) have ground to a halt. The bill was due to go to the ballot on January 24th 2012, but its hearing has now been indefinitely postponed.

Shortly afterwards, the Chairman of House Judiciary Committee, Lamar Smith, released a statement. He wrote, 'It is clear that we need to revisit the approach on how best to address the problem of foreign thieves that steal and sell American inventions and products.' 

He concluded, 'The House Judiciary Committee will postpone consideration of the legislation until there is wider agreement on a solution.'

Chairman Smith didn't mention Stop On-line Piracy Act (SOPA) specifically, but as its main sponsor the inference can be made.

The climb down will not mean the end to all legislation pertaining to copyright infringement on the internet. But it has been recognized that neither SOPA nor PIPA was the correct response to those issues. They will be rewritten or completely replaced with legislation that can find a 'wider consensus'.

It is expected that future proposals will be made targeting those who ignore the legalities of intellectual property in cyberspace. No doubt a lot of lessons have been learned about the scope that those bills should seek to take.

Other Articles About SOPA and PIPA

On January 18th 2012, over 115,000 websites went dark or censored their content. It was a protest over SOPA and PIPA.
Wikipedia, Reddit, Minecraft, Wordpress, Avast and Cheezburger will be blacked out on January 18th 2012. I will also be joining the protest.

How Cyber Activists Brought Pressure to Bear on SOPA and PIPA

Before the day of action only a handful of politicians opposed the bills. Afterwards it was a different story.

At the time of writing, it is less than 48 hours since thousands of websites blacked out to raise awareness of SOPA and PIPA. Nevertheless, the result is plain to see.

Many sites were able to track how many people sent e-mails through their form boxes. These directed American visitors to their own representatives in Congress, in order that they may register their opposition to the two separate bills.

By gathering these figures together, Fight the Future has already collated some startling data.It reveals in numbers just how fiercely the onslaught of the campaign must have been felt by those in Congress.

On the morning of January 18th 2012, only eight senators had publicly declared their opposition to PIPA. By the evening, their ranks had swelled to 34, including two of the original co-sponsors.

CNet News reported that the surge of people trying to contact their representatives had led to some governmental websites struggling to cope. Their servers reported 500 errors, which suggested that too many computers were trying to simultaneously access the site. It was an indirect indicator of just how suddenly millions of people had been made aware of the issues.

Strike Statistics

Fight the Future are still counting.

10,000,000 - Signatures on on-line petitions

8,000,000 - Telephone calls to Senators and Representatives

4,000,000 - E-mails to Senators and Representatives

115,000+ - Websites went on strike (Full figure may never be known.)

2,953,000 - Tweets sent on the subject

34 - Senators publicly against PIPA

Books about Cyber-Activism and Internet Protest

Buy these handbooks and guides to learn how cyberspace can be effectively used in your campaign.
CYBER WARFARE: The Cyber Commander's ...Cyberactivism: Online Activism in The...Hacktivists' Evolution Changes Cyber ...

Have Reid and Smith made the right decision pulling their respective bills?

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Updated: 10/04/2012, JoHarrington
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JoHarrington on 01/20/2012

*happy dances alongside you*

I'm sorry, was I supposed to be acting neutral on reporting this? LOL

Ember on 01/20/2012

WOOHOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!! Enough said.

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