What SOPA could make the web look like

SOPA is a massively disputed bill being proposed within the United States government that, if passed, would effectively cripple and destroy the web as we know it.  From the Wikipedia page on this topic:

The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) is a law (bill) of the United States proposed in 2011 to fight online trafficking in copyrighted intellectual property and counterfeit goods. Proposals include barring advertising networks and payment facilities from conducting business with allegedly infringing websites, barring search engines from linking to the sites, and requiring Internet service providers (ISP) to block access to the sites. The bill would criminalize the streaming of such content, with a maximum penalty of five years in prison.

In a coordinated protest of this proposal a number of sites went “dark” yesterday (January 18, 2012), and it not only should the overwhelming support against this proposal, but it also gave a glimpse of what the web might come to if this legislation passes. Here are a number of screen captures I took of sites that participated in the “blackout”:

As you can see the sites ranged from Universities to social media sites to personal sites. All of these and many more would be negatively impacted if this legislation goes through! Here is a TED Talk video from Clay Shirky wherein he breaks down the reasons why SOPA is such a bad idea better than I ever could:

You should take a few seconds and help:

Let’s just hope this legislation fails.

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