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facebook friends
scare tactic
social networking sites
internet piracy
small business owners
copyright infringement
downloading sites
background music
search engines
The Protect Ip Act / Sopa Act Makes You A Criminal
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The Protect Ip Act / Sopa Act Makes You A Criminal

You could become a criminal in the next few months if SOPA gets passed. This is not a scare tactic to get you sign something, or some broad statement to keep you to keep reading. The potential ramifications of passing the Stop Online Piracy Act will affect every user online, and will not only make you, the individual user of the Internet, liable for huge fines from copyright infringement. It could shut down major sites like YouTube or Facebook. It could destroy the millions of small business owners on the Internet, and even change the way the Internet itself works.

How is this going to affect you? Lets start small, and understand how it is going to change the Internet for you. Have you ever posted a video of something on YouTube? Do you have a Facebook account? Do you keep a blog or online journal? If so, chances are you could be accused of Internet piracy. Though usually associated with Peer to Peer downloading sites like Napster, and other forms of 'stealing' music and movies online through downloading, SOPA broadens the idea of Internet piracy to include the majority of users. IF you upload a picture of yourself on Facebook with any sort of brand name product in the shot (without permission from the company)- copyright infringement. If you put background music to a video and upload it to YouTube - copyright infringement. Do you have links to other websites on your blog? If they break the rules, then so are you - and you could get shut down.

And with the amount of lawsuits this is going to lead to, social networking sites, search engines, and other online communities/websites have no choice but to comply, or they become liable as well. Censorship will become the norm, and even Google will have no choice but to censor websites that don't comply with the new law.

Do you have an online business? SOPA will surely affect you. How many times have you uploaded a popular video to you money making blog? Can you even begin to count the links to and from your websites? How many Facebook friends do you have? Not only is there a huge chance that you have broken copyright infringement laws somewhere along the way (according to SOPA), if any of your sites links to another site that breaks the law, you could be shut down.

These, and other similar laws in countries such as New Zealand and The UK have caused many Internet users to change IP online. By using IP changing tools and services on the Internet, regardless of the your Internet activity, you can stay anonymous, and even make it look like you're browsing the Internet in a different country. Bypassing internet censorship is one major use of VPN services, but protecting yourself from IP tracking software from government and private organizations is being more popular through necessity.

Some videos about SOPA have been posted on blogs explaining in more detail how SOPA could "break the Internet" and trying to inspire internet users to oppose it with strength in number. Even Google and Facebook have spoken out against this bill. Do you think it will affect you?

Street Talk

I am writing a research paper on SOPA for one of my college composition classes. This helps me a lot with research. Do you know of any credible resources to find information.

  about 1 decade ago

I'd love to, but I can't post links. The Washing Post is good, and the official 'say no to SOPA' site

  about 1 decade ago
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