Websites go dark to protest SOPA/PIPA

Among those closed today are Wikipedia, Reddit and Twitpic [Mashable, Kravets/Wired; Mike Masnick; Dan Fisher on yesterday’s player-piano threat; our SOPA/PIPA coverage; Cato event tomorrow on Capitol Hill via David Boaz]. Matt Sherman: “Please note that what Google, Reddit and others are doing today is corporate political speech.” Flickr’s protest idea is brilliant: it’s letting users censor each other.

Update: lawmakers have been jumping ship on the bills over the course of the day, including Senate co-sponsor Mario Rubio (R-Fla.). (Bumped to keep on top of page).


  • Bravo Rubio!

    The phone and e-mail lines are burning up. Reports are that Washington is under a tsunami of anti-censorship outrage.

  • I sent Rubio and my congressman letters a couple of weeks ago. Good to see that they read their mail, even if slowly.

  • I refuse to applaud Rubio for removing his support from something he co-sponsored.

    He only pulled his support because said support isn’t politically popular, and that’s bs.

  • I’ll give Rubio partial credit for backing off from a mistake, whatever his motive. Unlike, say, Waxman and his CPSIA.

  • Vitter and Scalise also jumped ship late yesterday. Now we have to be on the lookout of this thing being shunted into a bigger bill when no one is looking or caring.

  • In today’s paper is another illustration, like the 2003 Eldred v. Ashcroft (Lessig) decision before it, that the US copyright-extension process has become utterly dysfunctional and corrupt. The public’s price for SOPA-like tightening of (more recent) copyright enforcement must include reversal of this betrayal of the public interest to rent-seeking parasites.

    JANUARY 19, 2012, Thursday.
    Foreign Copyrights Upheld
    Court Backs Reciprocal International Protection for Previously Public Material.

  • Conservative, liberal, everyone seems to be against this. I don’t understand the details but either the bill is completely inane or – at least on some level – it is being misrepresented on-line.

  • @Ron Miller–
    It is a case of a concentrated special interest pushing hard against a diffuse public interest where it hasn’t seemed worth the time of most of the public to push back. The Internet providers have made the diffuse public more aware of their interest and more able to combine. I hope a newly aroused public will push back enough to roll back earlier usurpations, notably the extension of copyright term to an unconstitutional life PLUS seventy years.

  • […] of the best protests [Ad Age, earlier on Flickr's clever entry and […]