This Is What an Internet Protest Looks Like

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Today, taking a break from hurling racist slurs and GIFs at one another, the internet is taking a symbolic stand against SOPA and PIPA—two awful laws that would ruin the web. Behold the blackout rebellion.

Giants like Reddit and Wikipedia (plus The Oatmeal's excellent animated approach) are taking part in the blackout day to show what a post-SOPA internet would look like: barren, bleak, and dark. These laws have the potential to permanently destroy fixtures of the web, and stifle The Next Great Site. So after you check out these acts of solidarity and dissent, do something real: find your elected officials, and give them a call and a piece of your mind. If we don't do anything, MPAA and the rest of the content money warlords win.

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Wikipedia

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Reddit

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WordPress

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4chan

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Fark

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Wired

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DISCUSSION

IceMetalPunk
IceMetalPunk

You know what's interesting? SOPA/PIPA really only affect sites with user-generated content, because other sites have full control over whether they put pirated content on them. At the same time, think about it: what site these days DOESN'T have some UGC? Even a simple comments system runs the risk of some idiot posting a torrent link and getting the whole site shut down doe everyone.

The Internet in its infancy was full of web pages built by one entity (person or group of people) and maintained by that same entity. All content on the site originated solely from that entity. But it's grown a lot since then, evolved into a collaborative effort whereby the entire world can contribute to anything they like from the comfort of their own homes. And that's great.

But the entire world includes idiots and malicious people as well as kind people (I don't want to say "intelligent" because there are so few of those people around the Interwebs). This means that allowing the user-generated content to represent the entire site with regards to intellectual property infringement makes no sense. It's baseless and only harms the foundations of the modern Internet.

I agree. Don't let this happen.