Wednesday, January 18, 2012

How SOPA would hurt us

Today, we're joining Wikipedia, Reddit, Google, and hundreds of other websites in protesting Internet censorship legislation that is currently in congress.

The Internet has been not only one of the most vibrant economic engines of the last decade, but also a powerful force supporting democratic and civil rights movements around the world.  This power is driven in part by a key piece of public policy: the safe harbor provision of the Digital Millenium Copyright Act.  This policy makes it possible for companies like Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube to accept messages and uploads from users, without fear of prosecution when those users violate copyright, as long as the companies respond quickly when rightsholders ask that copywritten material be taken down.

SOPA and PIPA, two bills currently in congress, would eliminate this protection.  Without it, Between the Bars could be dangerously liable for its users' contributions – the site operators could even face jail time if a writer contributes copywritten content.  We might not be able to continue to offer the service as a free space where anyone can speak.

We hope you will join us in fighting these bills to preserve a free and open Internet.  Let's not let our country join China and North Korea in their quest for a censored Internet.

Learn more and take Action!