It was recently announced that the SOPA and PIPA bills are being shelved. I haven’t gotten into the SOPA and PIPA debate for two reasons:

  1. I don’t like the idea of bringing politics to this blog.
  2. I wasn’t completely sure about how I felt about the bills.

I didn’t participate in the blackout, largely because I learned about it late and generally prefer to read a bill before coming out for or against it.  That’s not to say that those who did participate haven’t read the bill (though I am sure that there are those that didn’t), but most of the people that did participate have a bigger dog in the fight than I do.

I’ve been targeted by a DMCA takedown on YouTube in the past, so I know what it is like to have content removed with no trial. I’ll write more about that in a later post.

In the meantime, there’s an excellent TEDtalk explaining what the bills do.

On a side note, I would probably be more inclined to support bills like this if there was some kind of backlash in the event that due diligence did not occur.  If, for example, a company that issued a takedown notice had to pay $1000 per instance per day that a site is shown to be wrongfully taken down, I might be willing to give it consideration.  That is, if you are going to be heavy-handed, then you should expect heavy hands pushing back.

Or we could just avoid the heavy-handedness altogether and rely on the laws on the books to do their jobs.  They seem to be adequate when applied to MegaUpload’s current instances of infringement.