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Saturday, January 21, 2012

SOPA And PIPA Support Decreased

Last week supporters of the new US copyright legislations SOPA and PIPA began to worry, as the chairman of the Oversight committee in the House of Representatives claimed that unless there was consensus on the legislation, nobody would support the anti-piracy bills.

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Although the Oversight committee in the House of Representatives remains concerned about Senate action on the PIPA legislation, it is still confident that flawed legislation won’t be taken up by the House. Instead, they will keep working to tackle outstanding concerns and to build consensus before any copyright law comes before the House for a vote.

So, the White House publicly expressed its concerns about some of the bills’ provisions, thus giving a fatal blow to supporters of the anti-piracy laws, among whom 6 movie studios and 4 record labels hoping that the American Justice Department would receive the authority to block access to foreign sites facilitating piracy in case the bills were to pass. Moreover, the government is supposed to be able to force intermediaries like credit card companies, Internet advertisers, and broadband providers to cut off their support to such “notorious” services.

Meanwhile, the strong campaigns against both SOPA and PIPA bills have convinced lawmakers to drop DNS provisions. A vote on PIPA is scheduled to be held by the Senate on January 24. Indeed, once petitions to stop the laws began wondering online, senators announced that they would remove the DNS provisions from the suggested legislation. After this the support for SOPA and PIPA kept growing weaker as 6 Republican senators asked Majority Leader to postpone the vote on the bills.

In spite of the fact that the White House disapproves with both proposed laws, it said that Internet piracy became a real problem harming the US economy and threatening jobs for a serious number of middle class workers. In addition, it hurts America’s most creative and innovative firms and entrepreneurs, i.e. literally everyone – from struggling musicians to production crews and from the start-up social media companies to major film studios. Meanwhile, the existing instruments aren’t strong enough to tackle the worst Internet pirates. As a result, the White House is calling both supporters and opponents to the bills to suggest a viable solution to address copyright violation and protect the web and free speech.

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