In what is the fastest turn around to any post I’ve made (it doesn’t help that I am, if not the last, close to the last person to hear about something in the news), Congress announced today that they were officially shelving the Stop Online Piracy Act bill. Even after SOPA sponsor Lamar Smith conceded to remove the DNS provisions, consensus could not be reached within Congress & the bill has been put aside until it’s amended in a way to reaches consensus.
But rather than me trying to explain everything, check out the video in this link to get the full story from Angry Joe (skip past the 1st minute for SOPA news):
There is still the issue with the Protect IP Act still being up for vote. However, I doubt it’ll be passed now that SOPA is gone, since PIPA is basically just the Senate version of the same bill. We’ll wait & see.
I’ve seen some people commenting that they knew the bill wouldn’t be passed, but that seems a lot like hindsight. True, the bill would likely have been either vetoed by Obama or ruled as unconstitutional by the courts, but you can never tell what the government can do. I’m sure everyone thought Prohibition was a great idea until it blew up in their faces. To say that the huge amount of protests by, not just companies, but regular citizens had no effect would be a lie. Especially with this being an election year, any politician who wants to be re-elected would be stupid to approve such a disputed bill. So I’d wager that the internet is safe for the rest of the year.
More bills are sure to come about. And because online piracy is a major, legitimate issue, more bills do need to come. But hopefully this SOPA debacle has shown the government that they can’t just listen to the people stuffing money in their pockets. Maybe the next time they want to make a bill to protect against online piracy, they’ll actually work with companies that operate on the internet. I can’t remember which article I read it from, but they summed it up nicely by basically saying, “We can’t stifle one of our economy’s fastest-growing industries just to protect a flagging one.”