January 18, 2012 |
In cutting off access to thousands of websites for a day, the tech industry flexed its political muscle with a don't-mess-with-the-Web campaign that highlighted its vast reach and how indispensable the Internet has become. The sweeping blackout to protest federal anti-piracy bills sparked frustration and confusion Wednesday but had its intended effect - disrupting the usual flow of the Internet while mobilizing opposition among online users and lawmakers. More than 10,000 websites participated in the strike against the Stop Online Piracy Act and the Protect Intellectual Property Act, bills that opponents say could lead to censorship online and force some websites out of business.
January 17, 2012
While much of the nation's capital has been engrossed in the debate over unemployment, taxes and spending, lobbyists representing a huge swath of the U.S. economy have been battling over proposals to combat foreign websites dedicated to piracy. The Senate plans to take up its version soon, despite the lack of consensus about how to rein in pirate sites without censoring legitimate speech or stifling innovation. That would be a mistake. The bills - the PROTECT IP Act (S 968) in the Senate, the Stop Online Piracy Act (HR 3261)
January 17, 2012 |
What would the world be like without the Internet? Fire up your browser and see what you can't do. In the first strike of its kind, hundreds of popular sites such as Wikipedia, Reddit and Boing Boing were scheduled to temporarily shut down Wednesday to protest a pair of anti-piracy bills that they say essentially amount to censorship of the Internet. The prospect of a day without the websites set off a frenzy in the hours leading up to the strike, which was slated to begin Tuesday night, with parents urging their children to do their homework early and tech-savvy users posting instructions for how to access cached Wikipedia pages during the blackout.
January 17, 2012 |
Most people probably haven't paid much attention to the huge corporations waging war in Washington over legislation designed to crack down on online theft of movies, music and other content. But the conflict will hit consumers in the face Wednesday, when Wikipedia and a number of other websites intend to go dark to protest the proposed changes. Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales announced Monday that the hugely popular online encyclopedia would be unavailable for 24 hours to protest the Stop Online Piracy Act and related legislation, which opponents say could lead to censorship or the complete shutdown of some websites.
January 14, 2012 |
The Obama administration signaled Saturday it does not support aspects of pending anti-piracy legislation, a setback for the Motion Picture Assn. of America, Hollywood's chief lobbying arm. The measures - which have deeply divided the entertainment and technology industries - would give the Justice Department more tools to shut down foreign websites involved in theft of movies and TV shows. Major Hollywood studios and unions have been mounting a campaign in support of the bills to combat online piracy, which costs the industry billions annually.
October 19, 2011 |
Hollywood is launching one of its largest-ever get-out-the-vote campaigns. A broad coalition of film studios, TV networks and entertainment industry labor groups has launched an education campaign to teach the public about the evils of piracy and prod their employees and union members to support an anti-piracy bill in Washington. Through internal videos, newsletters, emails and booths set up in company commissaries, media giants such as NBC, Viacom, Sony Pictures and Warner Bros.
June 17, 2011 |
The Senate Judiciary Committee has signed off on a bill that would criminalize websites that profit by streaming bootleg movies to consumers. The committee approved legislation that would make it a felony for operators of websites to make money from delivering pirated movies to consumers via online streaming. It's expected to be taken up by the full Senate later this year. Current anti-piracy laws, which were enacted in the 1990s, target the downloading of movies from so-called peer-to-peer websites but do not address the growing problem of online streaming of pirated content.
May 27, 2011 |
The Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday unanimously approved a bill that seeks to rein in foreign websites that traffic in pirated movies and TV shows, a move that drew widespread support from a broad coalition of entertainment industry groups. Called the Protect IP Act, the proposed law is strongly backed by Hollywood's chief lobbying group, the Motion Picture Assn. of America, as well as the Independent Film & Television Alliance, the National Assn. of Theatre Owners and other industry and labor organizations.
May 17, 2011 |
Frustrated for years by rampant piracy, the recording industry is pushing California's lawmakers to approve legislation that would allow warrantless searches of companies that press copies of compact discs and DVDs. The Recording Industry Assn. of America, in effect, wants to give law enforcement officials the power to enter manufacturing plants without notice or court orders to check that discs are legitimate and carry legally required identification marks. The proposal by state Sen. Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima)