As a party that holds numerous copyright registrations and is in-process of registering additional material, my opinion should count when it comes to the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA). However, the response from Senator Bill Nelson (Florida) could easily be summarized as:
It's all good. We know what's best for you and you really don't know a damn thing about it. I'm going to vote where the money is and it is overwhelmingly in support of PIPA. So go bake a cake or do something useful.
A main issue that I have with the SOPA and PIPA legislation is that it gives our government agencies such as the Department of Justice (DOJ), Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) even more power than each already holds. As a copyright holder, I am more than capable of sending out a DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) takedown notice and have done so in past. I do not need or want the US government to have the ability to block the offending party's domains and initiate prosecution. Thanks, but no thanks – I'll pass.
As a blogger that often posts YouTube music videos I am also on the other side of that street and am well aware that the SOPA and PIPA legislation could serve as a platform to remove and/or block this blog, my other blogs, and my websites and prosecute me.
Any copyright holder of the music in a particular YouTube must only contact Google and request that it be removed or embedding be blocked. Many copyright holders do precisely that. I had a YouTube on my Blueprint Blog a couple of days ago that stated, “This content is not available in your country,” or something close to that when I returned to change it the following day. An example of embedding disabled is the Haddaway YouTube, “What is Love” found HERE. I love that video, but can't post it on this blog as it states, “embedding disabled by request”. So as you see, this is a simple solution for copyright holders.
So what in the hell is the Problem?
Well, the backers of the PIPA and SOPA legislation will slam you with all sorts of twisted reasoning about why we need these bills to pass, but the truth of the matter is that the laws will be abused and used to remove and/or block blogs such as this one. Consider what they managed to do with the PATRIOT Act long ago. As an early victim of the PATRIOT legislation passed in October of 2001, trust me when I tell you that they used it to eliminate the Fourth Amendment protections of many citizens. I was far from alone.
When the backers respond that this thesis of defense is all hype, just remember the PATRIOT Act, which I actually read shortly after it passed, unlike the dazed representatives that voted to pass it. Thanks, but I will pass on my government protecting me from pirates in other countries and anything else for that matter. They taught me long ago that they are the perpetrators, not the protectors.
As a writer with numerous registered copyrights, I am the alleged victim that they claim to help with this legislation and I want you to fight them all the way to the courthouse steps. Wikipedia, Reddit, Mozilla, WordPress, and Boing Boing will be implementing a blackout of all websites at 12 midnight EST (Washington DC time) on 18 January, 2012. That is tonight at midnight and it will be in effect for 24 hours. Contact Google, Twitter, Yahoo!, and Bing and request that each support this blackout also!
Now, Senator Bill Nelson of Florida, since I have published my viewpoint, I think I will go bake that fucking cake. Thanks for nothing as usual.
Before I leave here, just in case the legislation does pass at some point, you may want to know about the MAFIAA Fire Redirector: MAFIAA
For more information from the Electronic Frontier Foundation: Setting the Record Straight on SOPA: Some Evidence-Based Analysis