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No SOPA Vote Until 2012

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the just-when-you-least-expect-it dept.

Government 181

jfruhlinger writes "A victory, or a just a breather? The U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee has postponed further debate on the controversial Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) until after Congress' holiday break. At the urging of some SOPA opponents, Representative Lamar Smith, a Texas Republican and committee chairman, said Friday he will consider a hearing or a classified briefing on the bill's impact on cybersecurity." Update: 12/17 04:28 GMT by T : "Or not," as an anonymous reader comments below. "Despite the fact that Congress was supposed to be out of session until the end of January, the Judiciary Committee has just announced plans to come back to continue the markup this coming Wednesday. This is rather unusual and totally unnecessary. But it shows just how desperate Hollywood is to pass this bill as quickly as possible, before the momentum of opposition builds up even further."

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181 comments

Its a battle win, maybe not victory. (4, Insightful)

Jibekn (1975348) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405204)

This lets us get our shit together and oppose them properly.

Re:Its a battle win, maybe not victory. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405222)

Or alternatively, they're hoping that if they let it lie through the holidays, the furor will die down and they can pass it on a day during the Retardican primary votes when the media's too busy covering Rick Perry's latest stupid statement or Michele Bachmann's latest bigoted spew, moving the SOPA vote to page 8.

Re:Its a battle win, maybe not victory. (4, Insightful)

tibman (623933) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405284)

page 8 might be moving up. Neither cnn, bbc, foxnews, google, abc, msnbc, reuters, usatoday, or npr mention sopa on their front page. The two that had sopa were yahoo and cnet.

Re:Its a battle win, maybe not victory. (1)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406328)

Because for average political junkie SOPA is one of those laws that will only effect those fringe groups

Re:Its a battle win, maybe not victory. (4, Insightful)

Moryath (553296) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405286)

I can't believe this got modded down already - the idea of trying to hold bad news for a day when the media won't be looking is a longstanding trend. West Wing even referred to the "friday trash day" theory, where the White House would let little stories they wanted buried in a rush on fridays, giving them a scant few column inches on a day when nobody pays attention to the news anyways, forgotten by Monday.

I can completely believe that the SOPA pushers would try to schedule a vote for a day when "something else" has media attention.

Re:Its a battle win, maybe not victory. (4, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405996)

West Wing even referred to the "friday trash day" theory, where the White House would let little stories they wanted buried in a rush on fridays, giving them a scant few column inches on a day when nobody pays attention to the news anyways, forgotten by Monday.

While I agree with your point, you want to be careful about putting forward as proof something said on a network TV drama, especially one that portrayed a White House staff as being an earnest and basically good-hearted gang who for the most part have the best interest of the country at heart and an American president who is willing to stand up to religious bullies and corporate lobbyists.

It would be like saying that just because Captain Jack Harkness comes from the far future it is proof that time travel is possible.

Re:Its a battle win, maybe not victory. (2)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406466)

It would be like saying that just because Captain Jack Harkness comes from the far future it is proof that time travel is possible.

Torchwood is a lot more real than anything with the phrase "Federal oversight committee" in it. #justsayin

Re:Its a battle win, maybe not victory. (5, Insightful)

bky1701 (979071) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405300)

Most likely, they will re-propose it under a new name, with some of the more outlandish clauses removed, and pass it with a super-majority. Basically, follow the original plan: ask for the universe, settle for the earth.

Re:Its a battle win, maybe not victory. (4, Insightful)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405670)

That's pretty much how Congress works, but not quite. In general, they propose something, then if people scream, they wait a while for the anger to die down, then pass almost exactly the same bad bill as soon as they think everyone who cares has stopped paying attention.... If we're lucky, the most outlandish clauses will have been removed, but there's certainly no guarantee....

Re:Its a battle win, maybe not victory. (4, Interesting)

artor3 (1344997) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405986)

That's how it used to work, but Wisconsin taught them a valuable lesson. Propose something, and if people scream: fuck 'em, push it through anyway! They won't get to vote you out for months or years, by which time many of them will have given up on democracy, allowing you to win in a landslide.

Re:Its a battle win, maybe not victory. (2)

bky1701 (979071) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406348)

But, by inserting parts they don't really want, and then removing them, they can pass the bill and end up being praised for their efforts at compromise and protecting the public... even though they sought to screw the public from the outset.

Re:Its a battle win, maybe not victory. (2)

trolman (648780) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406412)

This comment is 'right-on man.' Just look at Patriot. That act was in someone's back pocket ready to go.

Re:Its a battle win, maybe not victory. (1)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406314)

We have a bitterly divided congress. There was two issues that both sides wanted (avoid government shutdown and keep payroll tax decrease) but they need to show their constituents that they are going to stand firm and not let the other side gets its way.
SOPA isn't really a big name law outside the geek, so they just wanted to get the laws passed that will imeadeatly help their representive people.

Re:Its a battle win, maybe not victory. (3, Interesting)

Chewbacon (797801) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406516)

Retardican primary votes when the media's too busy covering Rick Perry's latest stupid statement

Right, cause bipartisan politics has done wonders for the countries so far. Cut that shit and get in the mindset of working with a diverse crowd to stop it. How about you look up why we have parties and see why they are no longer any good to us and only make the American people hate each other. Take any democrat and republican and you'll see they agree on something.

Re:Its a battle win, maybe not victory. (1)

houstonbofh (602064) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406794)

Take any democrat and republican and you'll see they agree on something.

I think they agree on almost everything. Stay in power, and pay back the groups that bought you. The only difference between R and D is that only one side gets to cheat on the wife.

Maybe not delayed (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405230)

Or not. Despite the fact that Congress was supposed to be out of session until the end of January, the Judiciary Committee has just announced plans to come back to continue the markup this coming Wednesday. This is rather unusual and totally unnecessary. But it shows just how desperate Hollywood is to pass this bill as quickly as possible, before the momentum of opposition builds up even further.

http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20111216/11102617108/sopa-markup-runs-out-time-likely-delayed-until-2012.shtml

Re:Maybe not delayed (4, Funny)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405358)

Or not. Despite the fact that Congress was supposed to be out of session until the end of January, the Judiciary Committee has just announced plans to come back to continue the markup this coming Wednesday. This is rather unusual and totally unnecessary. But it shows just how desperate Hollywood is to pass this bill as quickly as possible, before the momentum of opposition builds up even further.

http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20111216/11102617108/sopa-markup-runs-out-time-likely-delayed-until-2012.shtml

Thanks to the old Hollywood westerns I had a mental picture of a stagecoach driver, whipping several representatives in harness and crying, "Yah! Git a move on! Giddap! Yah!" as the coach is pulled rapidly along a dusty trail, past sagebrush and cacti.

I'm sure it takes less whipping and more money, the the effect is the same.

Re:Maybe not delayed (2)

identity0 (77976) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405480)

I'm curious, how do they get this shit done?

I mean, obviously Hollywood/IP industries have a lot of money, but we do actually have very transparent means of seeing who gets campaign contributions from where.

How are they pulling the strings or giving the money?

Re:Maybe not delayed (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405596)

Money is considered free speech in the US.

Re:Maybe not delayed (1)

ProfanityHead (198878) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405752)

Corporations are considered people in the US.

Re:Maybe not delayed (1)

Lexx Greatrex (1160847) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405880)

Corporations are considered people in the US.

If that were the case, I would tend to support capital punishment.

Re:Maybe not delayed (1)

Worthless_Comments (987427) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405920)

That is the case.

Re:Maybe not delayed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405936)

Yep, some idiotic ruling saying that if we don't consider them people then we can't consider groups of people as people or some stupid bullshit. Let corporations be people, but STOP ALLOWING PEOPLE TO DONATE TO POLITICIANS.

Re:Maybe not delayed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38406318)

you must not be aware of the corollary to CORPORATIONS = PEOPLE, which is MONEY = SPEECH

Re:Maybe not delayed (4, Insightful)

JDG1980 (2438906) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406102)

Money is considered free speech in the US.

True, and a serious problem with politics in the US today. But what's really baffling is that the Web industry (Google/Facebook/etc), which stands to lose the most from this law, has far more money than the MAFIAA. Google alone could literally buy the entire recording industry without even feeling the pinch. Are the tech companies just really bad at lobbying? Why is the MAFIAA so well connected and able to punch so far above their weight?

Re:Maybe not delayed (3, Insightful)

The Master Control P (655590) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406322)

Because it'd be a shame if all our channels stopped playing your campaign ads, and all our "news" anchors started shitting on your name, Mr. Congressperson. Yeah, that'd be a real shame wouldn't it?

Now, we're not saying that anything like that will actually happen, perish the thought, but it would be very nice of you to pass this bill of ours...

Re:Maybe not delayed (4, Informative)

mbone (558574) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405768)

but we do actually have very transparent means of seeing who gets campaign contributions from where.

No, we don't. Search on "Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission."

Re:Maybe not delayed (4, Informative)

Mr. Shotgun (832121) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406056)

I'm curious, how do they get this shit done? I mean, obviously Hollywood/IP industries have a lot of money, but we do actually have very transparent means of seeing who gets campaign contributions from where. How are they pulling the strings or giving the money?

Kinda like this [colbertnation.com].

Re:Maybe not delayed (1)

mbone (558574) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405786)

Yes, that is what I heard too. I don't know what the rules are here. Maybe they will call Congress back into session for an hour (the Republicans have been doing that in the Senate a lot to avoid recess appointments).

OR NOT...? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405232)

http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20111216/11102617108/sopa-markup-runs-out-time-likely-delayed-until-2012.shtml

Update.... Or not. Despite the fact that Congress was supposed to be out of session until the end of January, the Judiciary Committee has just announced plans to come back to continue the markup this coming Wednesday. This is rather unusual and totally unnecessary. But it shows just how desperate Hollywood is to pass this bill as quickly as possible, before the momentum of opposition builds up even further.

Re:OR NOT...? (1)

lightknight (213164) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406032)

A sure sign that the bill should be nuked.

On an off-note, does anyone knows how many Senators and Representatives have teenage children / grandchildren? And of those, how many own an iPod or some other media device? Since >95% of the younger population is engaged in some form of copyright violation... It would be quietly entertaining to see the Legislators catch their own offspring in the crossfire. And for the price of those fines, bad publicity, and court costs, which for copyright violations could be quite excessive, I imagine they won't be receiving any Christmas cards from family for a while.

Senator Bob gets a new yacht, but his grand-kid has a $300,000 fine for downloading the latest teeny-bopper album and loading it on his iPod...and if Senator Bob tries to convince the RIAA to drop the suit, the media will go into a frenzy pointing out the double-standard, and possibly sinking Senator Bob's chances at re-election.

Re:OR NOT...? (3, Interesting)

JDG1980 (2438906) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406070)

I'm sure the MAFIAA has a VIP list of people who aren't to be threatened or sued, and that this list includes the family members of Reps and Senators.

Re:OR NOT...? (1)

lightknight (213164) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406254)

As a number of Judges recently found out, lists like that aren't always kept up to date, and the people involved won't necessarily care that they're going after a VIP's son / daughter / grandson / granddaughter.

There will be "friendly-fire" at some point. So, the Legislators in question have to make a decision: do they roll the dice, and hope that when the friendly fire does happen, it won't be one of their family / friends who get hit, or do they take the safe approach, which while not as fiscally enticing, does mean they won't be getting a phone call at 3 AM telling them that their offspring are being sued for more then their worth?

And while these people do huff their own charisma like it's going out of style, who can guarantee that they'll still be in Office when the shit hits the fan? Senator Bob may not get re-elected for different reasons, and a few years down the line, the bill he voted for could catch his family / friends unaware. While ex-Senator Bob might still have a lot of influence and friends when he leaves Office, that doesn't mean a paid shark for the larger media is going to overwhelmingly care about a has-been, who may or may not be a challenge to him getting a very nice settlement.

Just how far out do you think this protection extends? Do in-laws count? And so on. It's a large risk, with a relatively small payoff. A few million in the form of a campaign donation now, which will be gone after it gets spent on re-election, or the embarrassment of seeing your 12-year old niece being interrogated in a courtroom because she really wanted to listen to Britney Spear's latest single.

Re:OR NOT...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38406560)

Despite the fact that Congress was supposed to be out of session until the end of January

Pardon me - I'm all about tearing up SOPA (and NDAA), arresting those who proposed such tyranny, convicting them without trial, and marching them through the streets of every major city in the country whereby people could freely beat them about the head...

But - what the fuck? Out of session until the end of January?

And these fuckers get paid for this shit?

Translation (5, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405260)

Translation:
We're catching a lot of shit about this, and so we've told our campaign sponsors we have to table this until after the election. Once the election is over, we'll ram it down their throats, promise.

xoxoxo,
Your Elected Officials.

Re:Translation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405656)

Heres hoping for some ron paul action, someone with an actual histroy of conviction.

Re:Translation (1)

mbone (558574) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405758)

The election is almost a year off. This bill is dead, unless they do something really sneaky Wednesday.

Sign the petition (5, Informative)

Kongming (448396) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405280)

If you care about this issue and are a US citizen, then I strongly urge you to sign the a petition relating to the matter or start and promote a new one. The existing petition only has 2 days left. You can find it at:

https://wwws.whitehouse.gov/petitions#!/petition/amend-constitution-making-internet-unalienable-right/YJ3fXQcm [whitehouse.gov]

It might not fix the problem by itself, but it does get us a response and also gives the White House an idea of how many people are opposed to it.

As an aside, signing petitions at whitehouse.gov takes much less than voting and (given the 25,000 signature threshold) may actually have more of an impact than voting. I strongly urge you to do so.

Re:Sign the petition (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405330)

Hahahahahahahaha. Your naive belief that any of the ruling class cares about your petitions is precious.

Re:Sign the petition (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405372)

I'd say I'll call my senator buy my senator is Leahy. If he doesn't drop this anti-piracy campaign I'm not voting for him again, which is a shame cause he's done some good work over the years for the most part.

Hate SOPA - but hate the petition... (5, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405462)

I dislike SOPA with the burning fire of a thousand suns.

But amending the Constitution to claim the "internet is an unalienable right" strikes me as a really bad idea, and very vague.

Amusingly it would also seem to prevent Network Neutrality, which I would be in favor of - but again I think amending the constitution is a bad way to go about this, and pretty certainly requires way more votes than is possible to make happen.

Far better than signing this petition, call or write your house members and let them know you DO NOT WANT SOPA in any form. Not a "fixed" up bill. Nothing.

Re:Hate SOPA - but hate the petition... (4, Insightful)

artor3 (1344997) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406012)

call or write your house members and let them know you DO NOT WANT SOPA in any form.

A thousand times this. For partisan bills, this won't work... Republicans will never agree to anything proposed by Obama no matter how much the people they supposedly represent beg. But for something like SOPA, it's not so much a partisan issue. If you call, they WILL listen. Sadly, most people don't bother, so they think we don't really care, and vote the way that gets them paid. But if enough people let them know that we DO care, most of them will listen.

Re:Sign the petition (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405504)

That petition is absolutely /laughable/. Firstly, whomever wrote it needs some serious English lessons. Secondly, it's not up to Obama to amend the constitution, it's up to the states.

Re:Sign the petition (3, Insightful)

base3 (539820) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405640)

Whoever uses "whomever" as a subject needs some serious English lessons.

Re:Sign the petition (3, Funny)

PNutts (199112) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406038)

Whoever uses "whomever" as a subject needs some serious English lessons.

He didn't pay attention whilst in English class.

Re:Sign the petition (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38406578)

Who cares? It's one of the most redundant things I've ever seen. One or the other, everyone will be able to understand you.

Anything is only temporary. (5, Insightful)

bky1701 (979071) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405282)

The issue here is threefold. First, that money is allowed to influence politics. As long as that is true, those without money lose - and lose constantly. Second, the idea that ideas can be property. Creating artificial forms of property has repeatedly proven to widen wealth disparity and harm society at large. The very idea of property is a problem, but physical property is a necessary evil. "Intellectual property" is not. We need to not be creating and extending this "intellectual property," but rather we need to be rolling it back or abolishing it. Third, that censorship is seen as a reasonable way to deal with people in other countries doing things that are illegal here. We all criticized China and Iran for censoring communications which were illegal in their countries; why is it suddenly alright when it is for the sake of American profit? Because it is not, and if you believe so, it is only because you either stand to profit from said censorship, or are a fool being misled by those who do.

Re:Anything is only temporary. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405450)

Heck, Chris Dodd, former senator now representing the MPAA, came out not too long ago asking, "If China can censor the Internet, why can't we?" It was bad enough when he was only being influenced by money, but now that they bought him outright he doesn't think twice about saying nonsense like that.

Re:Anything is only temporary. (3, Insightful)

jamesh (87723) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405888)

Second, the idea that ideas can be property.

I take issue with this point and find it frustrating that people muddy the water with this idea. If you just spent 2 million dollars of your own and investors money making a movie, the idea that you'd then let people just take it for free would seem ridiculous to you too. A movie or a song isn't just 'an idea', it represents (potentially) a lot of hard work and a lot of money. I don't get why it's so hard to understand that downloading a movie you didn't pay for is pretty much the same as walking out of a video store with a movie you didn't pay for. The physical medium is unimportant, it's the content that matters here. If you want to enjoy it, at least have the decency to pay for it. If nobody paid for the hard work of others then the world would be a much worse place.

Patents, which are these days literally just ideas, are a whole different matter so don't confuse them with copyright infringement.

The very idea of property is a problem, but physical property is a necessary evil

I don't see why. It's much better than the alternative. Denouncing property just seems like an excuse for lazy and greedy people to take whatever they want and not have to pay for it, while still appearing to be "cool" about it.

Third, that censorship is seen as a reasonable way to deal with people in other countries doing things that are illegal here

And this is the problem. Taking something that you haven't paid for when you should have paid for it is wrong, but so far nobody has come up with a reasonable way to enforce it that doesn't unnecessarily and harshly infringe on the rights of the general population. DRM just made it harder for the people who legitimately paid for the product. Any attempt at tracking down perpetrators and taking them through the court system just seems like a huge waste of resources that could be better used elsewhere. I guess the recording industry is just going to have to suck it up and rely on the honesty of the public, because just about everything else is doomed to failure.

Re:Anything is only temporary. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38406074)

If you just spent 2 million dollars of your own and investors money making a movie, the idea that you'd then let people just take it for free would seem ridiculous to you too. A movie or a song isn't just 'an idea', it represents (potentially) a lot of hard work and a lot of money.

Your desire for profits DOES NOT justify why those "ideas" should be arbitrarily declared "property" and have government-enforced, rights-infringing monopolies slapped on them. If you can't figure out a way to make money without resorting to censorship, then you shouldn't be spending investors' money and you shouldn't even be in business! It's simply not the government's job to provide you with a business model and censorship powers, period.

Re:Anything is only temporary. (3, Interesting)

jamesh (87723) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406478)

If you just spent 2 million dollars of your own and investors money making a movie, the idea that you'd then let people just take it for free would seem ridiculous to you too. A movie or a song isn't just 'an idea', it represents (potentially) a lot of hard work and a lot of money.

Your desire for profits DOES NOT justify why those "ideas" should be arbitrarily declared "property" and have government-enforced, rights-infringing monopolies slapped on them.

It's not just an idea though. It's a body of work. Just because you've figured out a way to duplicate it with no cost to yourself doesn't magically take away its designation of "property".

If you can't figure out a way to make money without resorting to censorship, then you shouldn't be spending investors' money and you shouldn't even be in business! It's simply not the government's job to provide you with a business model and censorship powers, period.

Well... I think we obviously agree that censorship is never the right solution, and I doubt a good solution exists, but if a profit can't be made from making movies, then no movies will be made, and that would be sad.

Somewhere along the way people decided that because they can take something then it's right to take it, and they'll fight tooth and nail to stop anyone who dares interrupt their free ride. Yes I agree that pretty much every solution the government has come up with to stop copyright infringement is beyond stupid, but that doesn't mean that you should feel good about taking something you didn't pay for.

Re:Anything is only temporary. (1)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406602)

then no movies will be made

I doubt that. I think there would most likely be less movies. But no movies? I think people will always make things just because they can.

Somewhere along the way people decided that because they can take something then it's right to take it

Or, in this case, "copy."

and they'll fight tooth and nail to stop anyone who dares interrupt their free ride.

This sounds almost like the idea that all people who support copyright are "corporate shills." It sounds like a generalization of the opposition.

but that doesn't mean that you should feel good about taking something you didn't pay for.

And there's nothing to suggest that people shouldn't feel good. About "copying" or "taking." It's a matter of opinion.

Re:Anything is only temporary. (5, Informative)

bky1701 (979071) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406112)

I don't get why it's so hard to understand that downloading a movie you didn't pay for is pretty much the same as walking out of a video store with a movie you didn't pay for.

Because it isn't really, unless you're trying to make a false equivalency to create an argument to stand in for a real one in favor of controlling information for profit.

The store purchased the copy of the movie (a bit of a simplification, but that's what it works out to). Stealing the movie means the studio profits and the store loses an equal amount. Money changed hands, and the store lost: that is why stealing the movie is a crime against the store, not the studio.

Piracy duplicates the movie. It does not remove anything from anyone along the line, other than a potential to make money. That is not the same as stealing, just as refusing to allow BMW to tattoo their logo on your forehead is not stealing from BMW. If it is right or not to pirate needs to be determined on the value of the idea of owning ideas, NOT on some made up analogy to theft. Trying to phrase the argument as such is dishonest and deceptive.

Aside from that, I haven't really got time to respond to people who lie to improve their position. I am tired of hearing the same old rhetoric I have disproved hundreds of times, and I think your using it destroys your credibility to a point it isn't worth debating further. I will quote myself:

...if you believe so, it is only because you either stand to profit from said censorship, or are a fool being misled by those who do.

Re:Anything is only temporary. (2, Insightful)

jamesh (87723) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406420)

I don't get why it's so hard to understand that downloading a movie you didn't pay for is pretty much the same as walking out of a video store with a movie you didn't pay for.

Because it isn't really, unless you're trying to make a false equivalency to create an argument to stand in for a real one in favor of controlling information for profit.

How is that different to you creating an argument where you get to profit (by not paying for something someone else created)?

Piracy duplicates the movie. It does not remove anything from anyone along the line, other than a potential to make money. That is not the same as stealing, just as refusing to allow BMW to tattoo their logo on your forehead is not stealing from BMW. If it is right or not to pirate needs to be determined on the value of the idea of owning ideas, NOT on some made up analogy to theft. Trying to phrase the argument as such is dishonest and deceptive.

Someone else created it. What gives you the right to decide that you can just take a copy?

You can throw together all the arguments you like, but stop making the mistake of trying to get old world ideas of theft to apply to the new world. Just because it only exists as 1's and 0's doesn't make it yours to do with what you will. People say "theft" and "stealing" only because there isn't a word for "duplicating without permission something someone else worked hard to make". At some people in the future it will be possible to take something that someone else spent billions of dollars creating and clone it. In order for people to be motivated to create those things in the first place they need to be able to profit from it.

...if you believe so, it is only because you either stand to profit from said censorship, or are a fool being misled by those who do.

Well... I did state that censorship is not the solution, and is the worst possible outcome. My argument was that taking (or taking a copy of) something that someone else created without their permission is not a good thing to do. I also said there is no way to fix the problem that doesn't hurt more people that it helps. But that doesn't make it right to just take what you want.

Re:Anything is only temporary. (1)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406642)

Someone else created it. What gives you the right to decide that you can just take a copy?

What gives you the right to do anything at all? The magical rights fairy? The law? If it's the latter, that can be changed.

At some people in the future it will be possible to take something that someone else spent billions of dollars creating and clone it.

That sounds like amazing technology. It's such a shame that it will probably be held back by people searching only for profit. It's not necessarily their fault alone. They do live in this capitalistic society with everyone else.

is not a good thing to do

Subjective.

Re:Anything is only temporary. (3, Insightful)

sjames (1099) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406656)

Someone else created it. What gives you the right to decide that you can just take a copy?

But i don't TAKE a copy, I MAKE a copy. You subtly imply that I somehow deprive the copyright holder of something they once owned, but I do no such thing. They don't somehow end up with one less copy, they have exactly what they had before I made the copy.

Infringing copyright may well be something, but that something is certainly a lesser crime than theft. It's outrageous that legally speaking, you're better off throwing a brick through the music store window and stealing a CD than you are just downloading a copy. That is especially true for a minor.

What does this mean? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405288)

Representative Lamar Smith, a Texas Republican and committee chairman, said Friday he will consider a hearing or a classified briefing on the bill's impact on cybersecurity."

Consider a hearing or a classified briefing? I call bullshit. This is a PUBLIC issue!

Re:What does this mean? (4, Informative)

Xelios (822510) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405566)

Basically, at several points during the hearing some congressmen (usually Mr. Chaffetz and a couple others) pushed the committee to bring in some high level tech experts from various branches of the government to talk about the possible implications to DNSSec and general cyber security that SOPA might have, hence the classified briefing. They also pushed for more public hearings over and over again. It got to the point where Mr. Chaffetz offered to withdraw an amendment he made if the chairman would consider holding the classified briefing and, ideally, at least one other public briefing with "internet experts". He said he would consider it, but he didn't sound very sincere about it ("Oh, yeah ok, sure I'll consider it. Are you withdrawing your amendment now? Good, lets move on.").

Re:What does this mean? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405798)

There is a reason why Lamar Smith and others are hedging: If they tighten the rules too much, people will stop playing ball with them.

First, if the US plays too high and mighty with DNS and the IP address space, it is trivial to fragment the Net. Heck, China has done that with Kanji-only hostnames. There would be another standard made to route packets from sources to destinations, and right now, people use the current one out of laziness... but piss off too many people, and they will make their own ICANN. There are so many nations who can't stand the US right now that dinking around with foreign domain names may be just be the impetus that causes BRIC to make their own DNS.

Second, what SOPA will do is cause everyone to use VPN services. Right now, people really don't care, so covert monitoring of real criminals is easy. However, once people go to VPNs as a matter of course, the US is forced to either actively hunt down VPNs, or force ISPs to block them, neither a winning game. So, clamping down harder may just result in a more determined and harder to catch prey, weather it is child pornographers, enemy combatants, or serious crime. One can think about the ticking time bomb scenario, or an attack against something Western, and realize that had SOPA or other laws pushed people to take drastic action, the perps likely would have been caught.

Yes, the media industry is all over SOPA, but it would make law enforcement and tracking potential threats a task far harder than it is now.

dot dot dot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405302)

Representative Lamar Smith, a Texas Republican and committee chairman, said Friday he will consider a hearing or a classified briefing on the bill's impact on cybersecurity

He'll consider it? Gee thanks a lot, you corrupt piece of shit.

Said (1)

M0j0_j0j0 (1250800) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405320)

If freeddom of speech must be sacrificed to save the Ent.Industry, i guess the final option is to let the industry die.

Not quite (5, Informative)

Xelios (822510) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405338)

According to Issa's Twitter feed [twitter.com] the next hearing is scheduled for Dec. 21.

I just posted this in the other thread, but I'll go ahead and repost it here too, that way I can feel like I didn't waste my time on it. I actually watched most of the judiciary hearing yesterday and while I was probably in the middle of a stroke for most of it the parts I remember paint a pretty clear picture.

On the one side you had a few (very few) congressmen/women, namely Mr. Issa, Mr. Polis, Mr. Chaffetz, Ms. Lofgren and Ms. Jackson. They spent the entire hearing pleading with the chairman and the rest of the committee to allow experts (nerds as they often said) to essentially come in and explain the internet to them, because it was obvious that 99% of the members of the committee had no idea what they were talking about. They made reasonable, logical arguments and put forth one amendment after the other trying to clarify some really vague areas of the bill, all of which were shot down by the rest of the committee usually by a vote of ~6 to 24.

On the other side you had 5 or 6 members of the committee who also admitted several times that they had zero understanding of the technical aspects of the bill, but that the bill was awesome anyway. This group was mainly the chairman of the committee Mr. Smith, Mr. Berman, Mr. Watt, Mr. Johnson, Mr. Goodlatte and Ms. Waters. They made no arguments beyond "We have to do something. This is something. Therefor we should do this". Unlike the first group they didn't care that they were ignorant on the subject, they just wanted to get the damn thing passed. I doubt anyone here would be surprised to learn they all [opensecrets.org] received [opensecrets.org] large [opensecrets.org] campaign [opensecrets.org] contributions [opensecrets.org] from the TV/Music/Film industry. Check the contributions of the first group and you'll find the same industry conspicuously absent. It's also worth noting that more than half the committee never said a word during the entire session that wasn't "No" in response to an amendment vote. This third group cared so little they couldn't even be bothered to take part in the debate.

So when you're condemning this committee for being willfully ignorant just keep in mind that 5 or 6 of them don't deserve to be thrown in with the rest like that. I'll end with a quote from a frustrated Darrell Issa, speaking to the chairman of the committee half way through the second day:

I thank you for continually trying your best to go Republican, Democrat, Republican, Democrat. I might suggest that you might as well go 'for' and 'against', that'll save a lot of your 'for' people some wasted time because you'll run out of the 'against' pretty quickly. Mr. Chairman it's very clear we're gonna lose here eventually, and we're gonna lose in the worst possible way. We're gonna lose without all the facts, and we're gonna lose without the process being open in the way that I would hope it will be in the new year.

Re:Not quite (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405470)

Thank you for reporting. ::sigh::

Re:Not quite (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405492)

Someone figure out where to hit these bastards where it hurts -- in the constituency. ...yeah, right...

But who will give that briefing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405340)

"he will consider a hearing or a classified briefing on the bill's impact on cybersecurity."

I wonder what side will give that classified briefing.

Re:But who will give that briefing (1)

jesseck (942036) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405604)

Well, the fine folks at Sony will talk about how evil the internet is, and how it must be "regulated". The mafias will discuss how their current tools don't stop everything, and that the DMCA is too hard to follow. It will end with someone with 5 minutes to convince bought congressmen how the Internet works. After that, the already-drafted bill will be passed since debate is a formality.

We're screwed. (4, Insightful)

forkfail (228161) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405402)

Congress does this when they want time for two things to happen:

1. People to forget about it, and opposition to thus lose momentum.

2. Lobbyists to deliver more big bags of cash.

Both things are almost guaranteed to happen. This is going to pass.

Unless, people can give a rats arse for more than three months running about something, which, as desperately as I hope will happen, probably won't.

Re:We're screwed. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405572)

Unless Wikipedia blacks-out all the articles prior to the vote.

Re:We're screwed. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38406400)

Unless, people can give a rats arse for more than three months running about something, which, as desperately as I hope will happen, probably won't.

Is Occupy Blah still happening? I haven't been paying attention.

Newsflash: (2, Interesting)

Tastecicles (1153671) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405410)

Outlawing something pushes it underground [uk.com]. It does not make any perceived problem disappear, in fact it creates more. Some places have actually allowed controlled use of what would otherwise be completely illegal substances such as cocaine [guardian.co.uk] and hash [experienceamsterdam.com] because otherwise there would be so many problems the domestic security services would be overwhelmed.

Tis the season for sneaky legislation (2)

mykos (1627575) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405472)

Congress sees Christmas as a distraction for the public; it's a time for passing unpopular legislation while everyone is tied up with friends and family, too busy to call their congressman. It is a very good thing that it has been killed for the holiday season.

The traditional news outlets have given it very little coverage, but the internet will not let the fight die.

Texas? (0)

The Immutable (2459842) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405484)

Our hopes for common sense and freedom reside on the decision of the guy from TEXAS? Man are we boned.

Re:Texas? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405578)

There's an old saying in Tennessee — I know it's in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can't get fooled again.

Delay tactic (1)

deadhammer (576762) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405486)

A delay! Just what all those whiners... err citizens wanted, right? Well, this will serve one purpose at least - to wait until the opposition's momentum has died down before going to a vote. They learned their lesson from the Occupy movement well: wait until people are sick of hearing about the issue, then move to squash it.

Best part of the hearings? (2)

identity0 (77976) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405516)

Those of you who were following the hearing, what do you think was the best part?

Either +1 Insightful or +1 Funny. Or even -1 FUCKING WRONG

My favorite part was how Sheila Jackson Lee's tantrum over a tweet from a opponent lawmaker delayed things - but not the fact the person was tweeting about being bored and surfing the internet.

"We are debating the Stop Online Piracy Act and Shiela Jackson [sic] has so bored me that I'm killing time by surfing the Internet."
http://www.zdnet.com/news/sopa-votes-derailed-by-politicians-offensive-tweet/6334156 [zdnet.com]

Re:Best part of the hearings? (1)

Xelios (822510) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405612)

I thought it was a lot more ridiculous that they spent a full 30 minutes afterward arguing over whether or not to strike the word "offensive" from the record. In the end she agreed to replace it with "impolitic and unkind". I'm surprised they didn't take a break for juice boxes and Dunkaroos while they waited.

Re:Best part of the hearings? (1)

mbone (558574) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405796)

There was a (very rare) House filibuster today. I am not sure if this was part of it, but every little bit helps.

Who could object to that? (1)

tehlinux (896034) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405554)

They should change the name to something everyone likes, lik Stop Online Acts of Piracy (SOAP).

Just a delay (2)

jesseck (942036) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405558)

All this means is the issue will damage their chances of re-election. it will be passed once another term is locked in.

Naughty or nice? (2)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405672)

The reason for the delay is obvious, under the act Santa would be thrown in the slammer for allowing his elves to look up how to make toys online. No congressman wants to be responsible for arresting Santa the Christmas before an election year, even they aren't THAT evil.

Godwins law (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405788)

Escalation of the Nazi Regime was the end of the Nazi Regime.

SOPA is just another escalation.

And besides. What is the worst that can happen? ICANN becoming worthless as DNS provider? International alternatives to ICANN will prosper? Will we be using a Chinese or South African DNS as fallback in future? Will TOR become the new Internet? Will Wikipedia go offline as Jimbo said?

Interesting times.

The cold war gave us the Internet. Maybe stuff like SOPA is needed to enforce TOR and PGP.

Quote of the Day (4, Interesting)

mbone (558574) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405794)

Quote of the day, from the Washington Post [washingtonpost.com] : "As a general rule, when the people saying that this will have a horrible, chilling impact on something are the ones who created that thing in the first place, and the people who are saying, “Oh, no, it’ll be fine, it only targets the bad actors” are members of the Motion Picture Association of America, it seems obvious whose opinion you should heed."

Amazing (5, Interesting)

ixnaay (662250) | more than 2 years ago | (#38405810)

Somehow I've missed this issue over the last couple of months (I read /. daily, my memory must be getting worse than I thought). At first look, the bill reads like a bad joke. The wording of this bill as it stands now will allow the take down of any website which provides user forums / comments. Simply visit the forum, post a link to download copy-written material or other 'illegal' data (which covers a tremendous amount of ground), and the owner of the website has committed a felony and immediately loses all advertising income.The owner is then guilty - you can't even say 'guilty until proven innocent' - you've likely lost your main income, their reputation among 'reputable' businesses is gone, and their opportunities for defense and damages seem pretty insignificant as stated in the bill.

The user forum example just scratches the surface of absurd possibilities.

Amazon selling a book which could facilitate access to whatever a corporation declares is 'illegal' data,e.g. computing book which touches on bit-torrents.
Services like Pandora (you can record it on your home PC) or Google Music (obviously)
Any data backup company (oops, had illegal data on my backed up hard drive - bye bye Carbonite).

Did I miss something? I don't see where in this bill that any line is drawn between a site like Pirate's Bay and the examples above.

Re:Amazing (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38406574)

Amazon selling a book which could facilitate access to whatever a corporation declares is 'illegal' data,e.g. computing book which touches on bit-torrents.
Services like Pandora (you can record it on your home PC) or Google Music (obviously)
Any data backup company (oops, had illegal data on my backed up hard drive - bye bye Carbonite).

Since there doesn't appear to be any judicial oversight, is it possible that a terrorist organization [insertname] could set up a bot, & falsely claim violations occurring at millions of websites (e.g., in their forums-Amazon, Apple, Microsoft et al.), effectively shutting down internet commerce in the U.S.? Huh. Maybe if our congress likes both hyperbole and fighting terrorism - or at least the perception of the latter - then perhaps this line of reasoning might convince them (or their voting constituents) to reconsider their support for such a bill.

I vote NO CONFIDENCE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38405838)

and so should you. Remove these incompetent fools from power.

Marc by Marc Jacobs (-1, Offtopic)

hsmstyle (2533614) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406098)

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Where is the technical solution? (4, Interesting)

jasno (124830) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406124)

It's likely our complaints will fall on deaf ears. We don't need a political solution - we need a technical one.

There has to be some group of people looking at ways around SOPA... Alternate DNS systems, Tor, tunneling, encryption... all of these things should be able to defeat whatever measures they throw at us. The real way to defeat SOPA is to render it irrelevant.

We can do this now, before it's passed, or we can do it after, but we're going to do it regardless.

Re:Where is the technical solution? (2)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406626)

There has to be some group of people looking at ways around SOPA... Alternate DNS systems, Tor, tunneling, encryption...

It really depends what part of SOPA. If you mean the ability to block foreign websites, then using a DNS outside the US will probably work.

If you mean the part where file-sharing can land you in jail, then there is no technical solution. Some file sharers will end up getting caught, and some of them will end up going to jail. TOR could theoretically help you, but kiddie porn rings already try that, and they still end up getting caught.

SOPA would make Joseph McCarthy proud! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38406158)

It must be a priority to oust any moron who whole heartidly lends support to SOPA out of their respective jobs ASAP.
Not only is this bill completly dangerous it also shows us easily which people to brand them as McCarthyism http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McCarthyism in their fanatical ferver to stop piracy.

On October 26, 2011, Representative Lamar Smith introduced the Stop Online Piracy Act (H.R. 3261) ("SOPA"). Other sponsors of the Bill upon its introduction were Ranking Member John Conyers, IP Subcommittee Chairman Bob Goodlatte, Rep. Howard Berman, Rep. Marsha Blackburn, Rep. Mary Bono-Mack, Rep. Steve Chabot, Rep. Ted Deutch, Rep. Elton Gallegly, Rep. Tim Griffin, Rep. Dennis Ross, and Rep. Lee Terry.

Not victory. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38406446)

The shroud of the dark side has fallen. Begun, the SOPA War has.

Well, might be time to move up the date... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38406524)

http://www.reddit.com/r/IWantOut is your friend.

Just give me 6-12 months before this shit really goes down, and I'll be financially free and out of this place.

I've got this one. (1)

trolman (648780) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406550)

TO: Lamar Smith RE: SOPA 3261 I am the IT Director (in your district). I have 28 years IT experience. Please cease and desist with the SOPA H.R.3261. To me the bill reads like a bad joke. Thank you for your consideration.

sneaky (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38406606)

they will let people forget and pass it in a sneaky way

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