The New York City General Assembly hereby expresses its firm opposition to the Stop Online Piracy Act in the U.S. House of Representatives (H.R.3261) and the Protect IP Act in the U.S. Senate (S.968) as they are currently written and calls on all Occupy movements nationwide to mobilize supporters against their passage.
We oppose this bill because it gives too much vaguely-defined and unchecked power to the Department of Justice to regulate the transmission of information. These bills create the potential for governmental and corporate force to censor the internet and poses a threat to digital platforms that:
a) play a central role in the organizing of community meetings and direct actions; b) are essential channels through which millions of people share information vital to holding their government accountable; and, c) are integral to interoccupation communication and cooperation.
We commit to (1) taking individual action to ensure our respective legislators oppose or make significant improvements to this bill, (2) signing as individuals online petitions (ex “Stop the Internet control bill now!”) against these bills (3) and call on the Outeach, Movement Building and other working groups to organize other General Assemblies to take action against this legislation.
> The House's Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Senate's PROTECT IP Act would censor the Internet and create massive legal uncertainty and regulation for websites like YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook -- not to mention killing emerging mobile and social startups before they get off the ground. SOPA's regulations leave any website with user-contributed content -- that's pretty much all of social media -- no choice but to pre-screen their site's content for copyright violations, effectively killing them. Court orders may even require DNS providers to block certain websites. Who decides what’s infringing, and which sites you can and can’t visit? The Federal Government
- http://dontcensorthenet.com/ (sign pledge)
> "It contains provisions that will chill innovation. It contains provisions that will tinker with the fundamental fabric of the internet. It gives private corporations the power to censor. And best of all, it bypasses due legal process to do much of it."
-- James Allworth (Harvard Business School)
tumblr launched a campaign previously of randomly censoring texts of all their users for an interim to emphasize the seriousness of the threat:
Groups joining the Fight to Save the Internet:
> -- Mozilla (http://www.mozilla.org/sopa/)
> -- The Pirate Bay (http://www.thepiratebay.org)
> -- Anonymous (http://anonops.blogspot.com/)
> -- Creative Commons (http://creativecommons.org/weblog/entry/30375)
> -- Fight for the Future (http://fightforthefuture.org/)
Things to Do:
Spam http://www.tumblr.com/protect-the-net (and use it to contact your own pathetic servant to corporate power) and http://fightforthefuture.org/pipa/ (so people know what is at stake here).
Sign up for Censorship Day, Round 2: http://americancensorship.org/
Occupy Brooklyn has come out against this. I think Occupy LA should declare Nov.16 a mobilizing day for saving the Internet. If we directed our site's traffic to that page like tumblr for a period, we'd end up inundating legislators with our messages--not that that matters, them receiving our messages, but it might temporarily inconvenience them.