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Net Companies Consider the "Nuclear Option" To Combat SOPA

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the in-today's-sopa-news dept.

Businesses 507

Atypical Geek writes "Alec Liu of Fox News reports that Amazon, Facebook and Google are considering a coordinated blackout of the internet to protest SOPA, the Stop Online Privacy Act being debated in Congress. From the article: 'Such a move is drastic. And though the details of exactly how it would work are unclear, it's already under consideration, according to Markham Erickson, the executive director of NetCoalition, a trade association that includes the likes of Google, PayPal, Yahoo, and Twitter. With the Senate debating the SOPA legislation at the end of January, it looks as if the tech industry's top dogs are finally adding bite to their bark, something CNET called "the nuclear option." "When the home pages of Google.com, Amazon.com, Facebook.com, and their Internet allies simultaneously turn black with anti-censorship warnings that ask users to contact politicians about a vote in the U.S. Congress the next day on SOPA," Declan McCullagh wrote, "you'll know they're finally serious."'"

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507 comments

Such an option is going to cause panic... (5, Funny)

vikingpower (768921) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563418)

...not among politicians, but among all the kiddies who can not communicate anymore but via Facebook. Under-18 Doomsday guaranteed.

Re:Such an option is going to cause panic... (4, Interesting)

BetterThanCaesar (625636) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563502)

They should start with just targeting DC. If that doesn't get any reactions, then do the whole US for a day. Or the world, for that matter.

Re:Such an option is going to cause panic... (5, Insightful)

AngryDeuce (2205124) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563670)

They should start by targeting the entire U.S. and other "pro-SOPA" countries and leave the other countries alone. Why punish people all over the world just because a small minority of people in the U.S. are corrupt douchebag cockheads?

Targeting only D.C. isn't going to do much...the vast majority of the people, particularly legislators, that are supporting this legislation hardly even use the web.

Re:Such an option is going to cause panic... (5, Insightful)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563720)

You must be new here, just last year we wrote the copyright legislation for Spain and New Zealand, and shoved it down their throats (they passed it, grudgingly). We've twisted China's arm about movie piracy in the past, and plenty of other countries as well. We're terrible about installing dictators in countries, but we're really good at writing laws and making them law in other countries. What copyright law passes here in our bellwether country becomes law in 20-70% of the rest of the world.

Re:Such an option is going to cause panic... (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563806)

Our government (NZ) passed it eagerly. We also did some blackout-style protesting, but the bill was passed anyway because of the emergency powers available to the politicians after the devastating Christchurch earthquake.

That move alone absolutely sickened me, and I have lost all faith in our politicians.

Re:Such an option is going to cause panic... (1)

Dyinobal (1427207) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563722)

international pressure can be important as well. Plus it would be kinda funny since the USA is often mucking around in other countries legislation. I'd be happy to see my law makers break a sweat for a change while they sell out the American people.

First they get my hopes up, then ... (1)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563568)

Amazon, Facebook and Google are considering a coordinated a coordinated blackout of the internet

No Amazon, no Facebook? I'd be willing to forgo Google in return. But then ...

"When the home pages of Google.com, Amazon.com, Facebook.com, and their Internet allies simultaneously turn black with anti-censorship warnings that ask users to contact politicians about a vote in the U.S. Congress the next day on SOPA,"

... in other words, it's not really a blackout. It's just hype to make it look like they're "doing something about it."

And they complain about the OWS protesters not having their act together ...

Re:Such an option is going to cause panic... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563668)

And all the kiddies will look up and shout "Save us!" and Zuckerberg'll whisper "No.".

Re:Such an option is going to cause panic... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563714)

...not among politicians, but among all the kiddies who can not communicate anymore but via Facebook. Under-18 Doomsday guaranteed.

Cross your arms and huff all you want to, Facebook usage and traffic is not what you want to think it is. I'm sorry that you and I and everyone else here built the internet and other wonderful devices, but nerds are in the minority in usership and influence. The internet is now following the market, and our good old friend the Invisible Hand has made Facebook traffic number two. Sure, there are people who post about their breakfast on FB. There are also mini ego battles of enormous banality here. It's okay to be initially upset that a message on Facebook has more inluence than an article on slashdot. It's not okay to embrace your cognitive dissonance and perpetuate the incorrect model in your head and huff and puff over here to get more support for your particular brand of bigotry.

Re:Such an option is going to cause panic... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563770)

It will probably be like the last time facebook "changed their layout".

http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/facebook_wants_to_be_your_one_true_loginpage3.php [readwriteweb.com]

Millions of people will log into whatever page is highest ranked when they search google for facebook. Or bing for facebook or lycos it or whatever search company is still live that day. Honestly, it sounds like a hacker's dream. use SOE to get to the top that day and make a page that resembles facebook's normal login and bam! watch as you suddenly get half the internet's email addresses and passwords(most people use the same password for multiple sites).

I'm willing to bet 100 bucks people will be more pissed off at facebook itself than whatever this SOAP thing is. Facebook and Google users are way dumber than you can imagine.

And when they don't? (4, Interesting)

gazbo (517111) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563422)

And when they don't in fact do that, are we expected to be at all surprised?

Re:And when they don't? (5, Insightful)

Kjella (173770) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563816)

Nope. That doesn't mean rattling your sabers didn't have an effect. Nobody launched a single nuke during the Cold War, but both the explicit and implicit threats obviously had a huge effect. They don't really want to go nuclear any more than anyone wanted WWIII.

Editing fail (4, Informative)

Travelsonic (870859) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563450)

"Alec Liu of Fox News reports that Amazon, Facebook and Google are considering a coordinated a coordinated blackout of the internet to protest SOPA, the Stop Online Privacy Act ... *SNIP*

PIRACY act, it's the Stop Online PIRACY act. Talk about a grammar failure. /GrammarNazi.

Re:Editing fail (5, Funny)

ArsenneLupin (766289) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563490)

"Alec Liu of Fox News reports that Amazon, Facebook and Google are considering a coordinated a coordinated blackout of the internet to protest SOPA, the Stop Online Privacy Act ... *SNIP*

PIRACY act, it's the Stop Online PIRACY act. Talk about a grammar failure. /GrammarNazi.

Are you the same guy that keeps pointing out that Micro$oft is not actually spelled with a dollar sign?

Re:Editing fail (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563498)

I think it's a deliberate "error" in an attempt at satire.

Re:Editing fail (1)

Steauengeglase (512315) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563846)

Possibly, they do tend to err on the side of "Freudian slips". I'd love to be the fly on the wall at Fox News and see the grunts and interns side of this stuff.

Re:Editing fail (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563560)

Politicans mislabel their leg.. no, sorry.. Legislation politicians get from the lobbyists whispering in their ears are almost always mislabeled, why shouldn't we be allowed to mislabel things back?

Srsly? (3, Interesting)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563452)

I'd love to see it. I could believe it from Amazon and maybe Google, but also Facebook? That's tougher.

Paranoia check, am I the only one whose links fail to post to their failbook wall only when they're political speech, and never just some vapid crap?

Re:Srsly? (5, Interesting)

OS24Ever (245667) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563526)

I would think Facebook could implement something geographically that based on what they know about you, tell you who to call to get your Facebook account restored and have it be the senators of the state you live in, and the house of representatives for your zip code.

That could be spectacular. I mean the phone systems would melt down. I find this idea rather funny.

Re:Srsly? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563530)

Nope, been seeing that for weeks now, it first started when the article was news on Failbook itself.

Re:Srsly? (1)

mortonda (5175) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563570)

They could use geolocation to selectively turn it on: "Your congress critter ______ supports SOPA. When he/she publicly opposes SOPA, we will return your site back to normal and let you [feed the cows or whatever the current farmville thing is]

Re:Srsly? (4, Insightful)

RazorSharp (1418697) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563804)

I have no idea what you're talking about about this 'failbook wall' thing (I've never used Facebook), but I do know that Facebook, along with Google and Amazon, probably has the most to lose because of SOPA. As I understand it, it would make them responsible for the actions of their users, which would be completely unmanageable for them.

This is why SOPA will fail. These companies cannot afford to let it pass because even if it did their only option would be noncompliance. This threat of a blackout is a warning. If they do go through with it, SOPA will be dead. Almost every single congressman's mailbox/e-mail server will be flooded with messages, it would be like a legal DoS.

Just blackout 4/5 of the screen (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563460)

Let people access facebook, etc, but only in a tiny little window. Have the rest black with a message "Call your politician right now to remove this".

Re:Just blackout 4/5 of the screen (1)

ArsenneLupin (766289) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563518)

Let people access facebook, etc, but only in a tiny little window. Have the rest black with a message "Call your politician right now to remove this".

In a time where even the pirate parties wear horse blinkers on their websites, nobody might actually notice this...

Re:Just blackout 4/5 of the screen (1)

Hentes (2461350) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563842)

The problem is that most seasoned internet users have already grown an adblock in their brain that will filter it out.

Democracy in Action (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563464)

Money is speech, and one interest group fights another interest groups legislation.

Re:Democracy in Action (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563514)

What's interesting is that despite their size and financial power, the technology companies are very poorly organised and do very little lobbying when you compare them to the media companies. Which is why we get such horribly lopsided legislation such as SOPA.

If the tech. companies actually got themselves organised in Washington instead of pulling silly stunts, they might actually find they can get a lot more done.

Re:Democracy in Action (5, Insightful)

tjhart85 (1840452) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563640)

Yes, exactly! Getting the people involved is NOT the solution! The real solution is that they just have to offer a bigger bribe than the media companies!

Re:Democracy in Action (1)

AngryDeuce (2205124) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563774)

Rather than trading one set of people buying off our government for another set, how about these tech companies band together and help force a real dialog on campaign reform? If they truly care about freedom and rights, they should be advocating for causes beyond those which directly effect their own bottom line.

All I'm saying is, if corporations are people, they're some pretty goddamned selfish people. Is there any corporation out there that could be called "altruistic"? I've never heard of one. What board would even tolerate altruism if it didn't line their own pockets? Even humanitarian efforts and charitable giving is often for tax purposes or so they can throw commercials on TV showing everybody how great they are, i.e., advertising.

I laud the efforts of these tech companies, but I would respect it a lot more if they were standing up as citizens of this country, not as people that stand to lose money financially due to this legislation.

Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563470)

I would love to see it. Then people would start giving a sh*t about their freedoms.

Pot calling the kettle black (0)

ironjaw33 (1645357) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563474)

Isn't a collusive action like this no better than the legislation these corporations are trying to stop? Blocking the internet is blocking the internet, regardless of who does it and why.

Re:Pot calling the kettle black (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563512)

Not really. A private company can decide to shut down at any moment, there is nothing inherently wrong with this. When a government decides to shut down private companies at will though, that's when shit hits the proverbial fan.

Re:Pot calling the kettle black (4, Insightful)

Sloppy (14984) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563600)

What a bizarre thing to say. A blackout of a handful of websites, especially when self-imposed, is hardly "blocking the internet." It's not in the same league as the government fucking up DNS for everyone whether they consent or not.

Re:Pot calling the kettle black (-1)

ironjaw33 (1645357) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563766)

What a bizarre thing to say.

Can we dispense with the red herrings?

A blackout of a handful of websites, especially when self-imposed, is hardly "blocking the internet." It's not in the same league as the government fucking up DNS for everyone whether they consent or not.

Perhaps my usage of "blocking the internet" was too broad, but in both of these cases, the end result is exactly the same. The government isn't going to shut down the entire DNS system, but they will be able to selectively block sites. What's the difference between Facebook, Google, et. al. taking themselves offline compared to the government doing it for them? From an end user's perspective, there is no difference.

Re:Pot calling the kettle black (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563818)

A blackout of a handful of websites, especially when self-imposed, is hardly "blocking the internet."

Closing Google is for many people the same as closing the Internet. How to go to a site without a search box?

Re:Pot calling the kettle black (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563608)

It brings the complex and frankly boring discussion down to the level of the common people and very effectly shows how it could impact them. Government has gotten away with a lot of shit because it didn't impact American Idol or other TV shows, the ability to look at pr0n or cute cat pictures, and other things people really care about in their leisure time.

Re:Pot calling the kettle black (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563658)

Not very bright are you? Or have you fully given in to the notion that there is no difference between corps and the gov.

Re:Pot calling the kettle black (4, Informative)

JoeMerchant (803320) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563702)

Isn't a collusive action like this no better than the legislation these corporations are trying to stop? Blocking the internet is blocking the internet, regardless of who does it and why.

There's a difference between a protest a few hours long and a law that will change the landscape for decades to come.

Re:Pot calling the kettle black (1)

ironjaw33 (1645357) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563850)

Isn't a collusive action like this no better than the legislation these corporations are trying to stop? Blocking the internet is blocking the internet, regardless of who does it and why.

There's a difference between a protest a few hours long and a law that will change the landscape for decades to come.

How short does the protest have to be so that it's not considered to be "changing the landscape"? Where do you draw the line?

Re:Pot calling the kettle black (1)

ooshna (1654125) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563828)

Maybe its to show what could happen to your favorite sites if this was to pass?

They can find better protets methods... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563476)

Rather then using everyday people as hostages.

I have lots of dealings involving PayPal, and I dont have time to be part of some stunt even though I dont support SOPA.

A simple splash screen is fine.

Re:They can find better protets methods... (5, Insightful)

mrclisdue (1321513) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563546)

A simple splash screen is fine.

Except that, once SOPA is enacted, you will be greeted with a 404 when you try to login to your favourite site...forever.

The point being that once SOPA is enacted, everybody becomes hostage.

cheers,

Re:They can find better protets methods... (5, Insightful)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563614)

And that attitude is why we are in this mess in the first place. You are all for it, as long as you are not inconvenienced.

Better option -- Targeted blackout (4, Interesting)

DarkOx (621550) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563484)

Google, Facebook, Amazon,Yahoo, etc should continue as normal but show the supports of censorship just how much fun being censored can be!

Google/Yahoo can simply don't return any results that include the names of Senators, and Representatives that supported the act, bonus points if you can still detect NEGATIVE news about them and return those results, don't return listings for products from companies that support the ACT on Amazon/Google/Yahoo, Facebook stop having the profiles come up in searches and don't let any posts hit news feeds even to people who are all ready friends or followers.

Frankly after such a black out of those organizations I'd be real surprised if the thing passes, and if it does is not repealed in a week. It would also give a big boost to those who don't support this stuff as it will put them front and center before the consumer for a change.

Re:Better option -- Targeted blackout (2)

Shavano (2541114) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563576)

Targeted blackout is the right choice. Also, don't display SOPA backers' ads.

Re:Better option -- Targeted blackout (1)

Courageous (228506) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563594)

Certainly you don't think that Google would be unwise enough to deliberately tweak a legislative body on the nose? When already there are murmurings of their monopoly status in the search business? Not wise, no not wise.

Re:Better option -- Targeted blackout (5, Interesting)

shentino (1139071) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563664)

I wonder if Google's anti censorship stance is what got them under the antitrust microscope in the first place?

Far easier to pass a bad law when you have your opponent by the balls.

Re:Better option -- Targeted blackout (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563672)

I would like to point out that in no way is monopoly status illegal.

Re:Better option -- Targeted blackout (1)

travbrad (622986) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563822)

I'm not really convinced Google has a monopoly on search in the first place either. The last numbers I saw put them at 65% market share. That's certainly a very strong position to be in, but hardly what I'd call a "monopoly".

Re:Better option -- Targeted blackout (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563716)

There is nothing wrong with being a monopoly. And with their current market share it's not that hard to argue they already are a monopoly and have been for the most part of the past decade or so.

The only problem with a monopoly follows if they would leverage that to enter other markets. And that I have yet to see Google do.

Re:Better option -- Targeted blackout (1)

DarkOx (621550) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563728)

I am not sure I agree. Much better to try can fight their enemies now before they become stronger. Right now Congress has pretty much the lowest approval rating its ever had. Its not like the SEC and other regulators are exactly well regarded by the public either at the moment.

If Google makes their case to the public ( and the have the visibility to do so while simultaneously being able to reduce the visibility of their opponents) that THEY are standing up for YOUR rights and freedoms while $CongressPerson is whoring himself out for corporate contributions and selling YOU down the river at the same time, I wonder who wins that debate. Google could even recruit some candidates with compatible views on IP and suggest you consider them as replacements for $CongressPerson.

Google is a BIG American success story that the public wants to see at time when they are very frustrated with the economy, Congress is in their opinion an never ending shit show. I am pretty sure Joe public does NOT want to see Washington dumping all over Google, and if he finds himself choosing between his sitting representative and Google, he will choose Google.

Re:Better option -- Targeted blackout (1)

DarkOx (621550) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563812)

I am not suggesting that Google really does have your interests at heart, or that putting Google in a position to weaken oversight over themselves and similar organizations might not be short sighted, just that they could sell a good portion of the electorate on the idea they are about Truth, Justice, and the American Way, and naturally are Not Evil, unlike your current $CongressPerson who probably is evil.

Re:Better option -- Targeted blackout (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563694)

I hope they would make this black-out US only.

And that's not just because I'm out of the US; it's mainly to show the US politicians on how much in a disadvantage they're going to be if Google et.al. would decide to move out of the country and set up shop somewhere in Europe or so, and stop services there (how the actual move would be done I don't know but pushed hard enough they would find a way).

Re:Better option -- Targeted blackout (3, Informative)

fermion (181285) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563706)

A full blackout is a reasonable response, because, in the language that is so popular with politicians, SOPA is going to result in excessive regulation that will cost jobs and likely cause significant increases in the cost of services, perhaps to the point where those services will no longer be able to provided on an ad supported or free to consumer basis.

The only impediment is how to make this coordinated. For instance all the Google, Bing, and Yahoo are going to have cooperate. Otherwise any blackout may simply result in loss of customers for one service, not a clear message to call one's representative. I suspect that if the services choose a minute during the day when no results are returned, only a message to call your representative and state your opinion on SOPA, the bill will die. If Google and MS tell users that search will die if SOPA is passed, no amount of politicking will be able to counteract that message.

Anything less is a show of support for SOPA by the major players.

Re:Better option -- Targeted blackout (1)

quizzicus (891184) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563778)

As Google is already under some anti-trust scrutiny, selectively blocking results for specific companies for any reason would not be the smartest move for them.

No need ... (5, Insightful)

PPH (736903) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563488)

... to black out an entire site. Just drop the candidates' Twitter, FaceBook accounts and websites immediately prior to various state primary elections or caucuses.

You want panic? That'll be panic the likes of which you've never seen.

Re:No need ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563548)

Then they'll get arrested for electioneering.

Stop Talking (5, Insightful)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563494)

... and do it. Either you have a backbone or you don't. Pick a day, middle of the week, say Jan 12th, and just do it. Announce you're doing it, and watch the others fall in line. True leadership doesn't wait.

Re:Stop Talking (1, Offtopic)

Ries (765608) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563726)

... and do it. Either you have a backbone or you don't. Pick a day, middle of the week, say Jan 12th, and just do it. Announce you're doing it, and watch the others fall in line. True leadership doesn't wait.

Which would make true leadership the ones, most likely to take an arrow to the knee!

Re:Stop Talking (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563844)

Your approach has a race condition where two of the players could simultaneously announce different dates. Talking first is better.

Better do it fast! (2)

Usefull Idiot (202445) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563496)

Before a law passes that would declare it terrorism! Unless they pass a law retroactively declaring discussing the option a terroristic threat, which I wouldn't put past the lawmakers... Uh oh, I should shut up, I'm giving them ideas.

Good Idea (1)

Linsaran (728833) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563522)

I expect that something like this would be radically successful, but it's an option that shouldn't be utilized except in dire circumstances (such as against SOPA) otherwise it'll end up like wikimedia's 'personal appeal from Jimmy Wales' where people would generally ignore it and go about their business. Hopefully there is an internet 'blackout' in this situation, but amazon, google, et all don't make this a regular thing.

Re:Good Idea (1)

travbrad (622986) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563848)

With wikipedia it doesn't prevent you from gaining access to the site/information you are looking for, so I don't think they are the same really.

They should just do it on the weekends (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563528)

Shut down everything on the weekends from now till then. That'll get the point accross.

This move is lame... (4, Insightful)

kanto (1851816) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563534)

... and underlines the travesty that democracy has become. It's bad enough corporations write the legislation now they're going to effectively start voting on them by themselves.. this should scare the living daylights out of us and not be some kind a source for celebration.

Re:This move is lame... (2)

Hentes (2461350) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563754)

Because it's so very democratic when the congress of one nation writes the rules affecting the whole Internet? The userbase of these corporations represent the global Internet community much better.

Re:This move is lame... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563834)

SOPA wont affect what you do in your country, unless your spineless country bows to the US.

What about the rest of the world? (4, Insightful)

shabble (90296) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563542)

"...and their Internet allies simultaneously turn black with anti-censorship warnings that ask users to contact politicians about a vote in the U.S. Congress the next day on SOPA."

Are they going to geo-locate IP addresses so those of us that don't have a congress-critter to talk to don't see what, to us, is a pointless message?

Re:What about the rest of the world? (1)

Thantik (1207112) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563632)

First US, then you. Just because it has nothing to do with your country yet, doesn't mean it won't. The United States is notorious for trying to push draconian legislation on other countries.

Re:What about the rest of the world? (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563784)

Limiting this to the US only would possibly give an even stronger message. It would highlight the advantage the rest of the world has by still having access to those services. Remember the rest of the world may follow the US a lot but they're not downright stupid. If they see the losses causes in the US by the loss of these important services (primarily search; there is no alternative for online search as there is for communications - can always fall back on e-mail for that), they would probably be wise enough not to enact similar legislations.

Re:What about the rest of the world? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563662)

Just give us non-Americans an American address to which to send hate mail. Make it the international incident it truly is, considering the harm it'll do internationally.

Re:What about the rest of the world? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563730)

I hope they don't. The rest of the world needs to be confronted with the fact that the internet has way too many Big Red Buttons.

All well and good, but... (4, Interesting)

IANAAC (692242) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563556)

That's all well and good, but a total blackout of pages is never going to happen. These companies have too much money to lose.

What will most likely happen is you'll get a black box on the page with the message, then a button to click to continue on with your search/purchase/whatever.

I would fully support complete uavailability from these websites for a day/set time period - it would really be effective. But it'll never happen as long as there's money to be made/lost.

Re:All well and good, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563626)

Quite frankly, all of them have even more money to lose if SOPA manages to pass.

I hope that some companies do think in the long run.

Re:All well and good, but... (1)

tjhart85 (1840452) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563678)

And how much money do you think they're likely to lose if this law does pass? It's a calculated risk that might wind up SAVING them money in the long run.

Re:All well and good, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563688)

Unless they see a LOT more money to be lost by NOT doing this, which appears to be the case.

Re:All well and good, but... (4, Insightful)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563796)

The loss of one day's worth is far less than the potential losses caused by SOPA. Which include downright closure of your business.

Yeah! That'll show 'em! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563566)

Jack booted thugs with an effective monopoly on guns vs. changing the color of web pages.

I wonder who will win that battle?

No, the nuclear option is... (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563580)

replacing DNS. With browser manufacturers onboard, it wouldn't be nearly as disruptive as one might think - particularly as nothing more than a new, preferred method that lived alongside the old method. Or another nuclear options is some combination of this and encrypting/onion-routing the entire Web, so that no one can tell where content is actually coming from.

What TFA mentions is an attempt to barter by threatening suicide - not war.

Re:No, the nuclear option is... (1)

Hentes (2461350) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563788)

And then the next law will simply ban alternative DNSes. Encrypting the whole web is impractical

Bean Counters (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563588)

With the thousands of accountants and investors constantly pushing the bottom line, it is a surprise that companies like Google are just now awakening to the threat that, if used by the media companies, threatens the very existence of their core services.

Doesn't have to be a total blackout (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563592)

Just have the main pages display a message with a "continue to site" button and any other (long URL) access works as normal.

That way nothing breaks and everyone can still use the sites but you will still interrupt enough people to get the message across.

Re:Doesn't have to be a total blackout (1)

PessimysticRaven (1864010) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563696)

Right, because everyone pays attention to the full-page-style ad windows.

NoScript would become SOPA's most effective tool.

Re:Doesn't have to be a total blackout (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563738)

Main page? Does anyone ever see front pages any more? FB users go to their own stream, google is used by search bars in browsers, twitter is through various mobile front ends and the user's own feed. Get the picture?

Has Google, Amazon et al proposed an alternative? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563638)

Do they have a proposal that would help combat piracy that would not suffer from the alleged defects of SOPA? I haven't seen it.

Just reroute IP blocks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563666)

Just reroute all known RIAA/ MPAA IP addresses to banner pages, with an option to enter a series of captchas to continue to the originally intended page...hehehe, technically it's not "blocking"...just make it "safer"

SOAP is what you get (5, Interesting)

RichMan (8097) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563710)

When the politicians admit
a) they don't understand the tech
b) are willing to take the positions of the media companies that donate to them

So the US is led by ludites who have sold their favor to the corporations. And this (the US) is the self descibed "leader of the free world".

Where is the power of the people in this process? Where is the representation of the taxed?
Where is the educated and informed action that is supposed to happen in a democracy?

Do we need more proof we are living in a corporatocracy ?

Why are we fighting SOPA? Let them escalate... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38563736)

Isn't SOPA really about destroying the ICANN monopolism in favor of distributed DNS?

Piracy will never be stopped by just changing the configuration on some DNS when entire jurisdictions with real cops and judges have already failed. But one can dream...

Newscorp (1)

AlphaLop (930759) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563742)

Maybe rather than drive more traffic to a website that supports the legislation (Fox News is a daughter company of NewsCorp. A vocal proponent of the legislation.)

I am sure we could find a link to a less unbalanced "News" site. (I hate using quotes that much but I can't refer to that biased political commentary network as a news agency, for that matter there are few legit news sources anymore, its all just commentary and opinion pieces anymore, but thats another rant.)

It frustrates me, I love Fox's animated shows but despise their political side.

Good idea, time to call for attention. (4, Informative)

Artemis3 (85734) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563768)

It is a good idea, if the block shows a notice about the issue at hand. Wikipedia Italy did the same to protest something similar.

SOPA/PIPA in the end forces self-censorship, Americans might as well try an early taste of it. Also, nobody in their right mind should keep their e-business there, and its about time the world breaks with ICANN and switch to alternatives like OpenNIC.

I don't agree with that "nuclear" wording made by CNET. For a moment i though either the nuclear power industry was involved and would agree to a literal "blackout" or something unlikely involving weapons of mass destruction...

Also i hope they make clear this is something concerning USA legislative branch, aka Congress, and its their citizens the ones getting the worst. Might be painful at first, but The World will learn to route around America. So the "blackouts" should be limited to American IPs.

The notice might also show a list of who are supporting this bill, and call for boycotts, go daddy style; an action which seems to have gotten some people nervous.

Privacy (1)

dsouza42 (1151071) | more than 2 years ago | (#38563836)

From the summary: "...to protest SOPA, the Stop Online Privacy Act being debated in Congress..."

In other news, Facebook has just announced it's support to SOPA.
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