Obama Administration backs SOPA in apathetic industry

by Cougar News Contributor 656 views0

4Apathy, the one word that can describe the state of the online entertainment industry, today.

In July, the Department of  Commerce Internet Policy Task Force released a report on the state of affairs and goals for reforming the way the government interacts and regulates laws pertaining to the Internet at large.

Upon its release, a small portion of online entertainers and site owners picked up the report to make sure that the ever evolving internet, their livelihood, would stay intact, while understanding what the government thought the best course for the future was. Unfortunately to their dismay, it seemed that the Department of Commerce’s Internet Policy Task Force headed up by the Obama Administration did not have the people’s best interests at mind. To the shock of the few that unearthed this discovery, it seems the masses were completely apathetic to the report, offering a few words, only to shy away from the topic.

This is quite the different reaction compared to the millions of people that rallied internationally to put down the Stop Online Piracy Act, SOPA, that was introduced by U.S. Rep. Lamar S. Smith in October 2011. The bill sparked an estimated 7,000 website black out protest that included giants like Wikipedia and Google.

2The original SOPA bill that saw 7 million signatures against the bill, countless boycotts of companies and organizations that supported the legislation, with large scale opposition rally held in New York City, was aimed at all online content providers, effectively destroying the way people make and comment online entertainment.

At the time, millions of American jobs were hanging in the balance as SOPA would not only limit what you could show, but also what you could say about any intellectual property copyright. This carried such ramifications as a misdemeanor and heavy fines too that of a felony charge and jail time. This would also effectively limit American’s First Amendment rights, and be the largest government-backed censorship in history.

The Department of Commerce’s Internet Policy Task Force, reports that while they did not find SOPA usable in the state that it was presented, there are key features that they wish to appropriate, mainly that of the felony charges for streaming any online content that was deemed to fall under copyright, as well as broadening what streaming means, much like the original SOPA bill.

3Members of the online entertainment web site, N4G, have been quoted as saying: “Sigh, politicians sticking their noses in where they aren’t wanted.”

“As long as they can find a way to screw people over but still put money in their pockets they will never give up on this.”

“It’s official … politicians in office of questionable moral have gradually become evil or are inherently so. Power corrupts right?”

Other member of the community took the time to point out political problems when it comes to the internet:

“After the Prism scandal, does the Obama administration needs this? Politicians really don’t understand the internet and their users …”

This left few to comment with in a proactive approach to the news and fewer to act on it, only to simple agree with one user who stated:
“Can they please give it up already!”

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