}

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Familiar activism

Today several US-based Internet companies blacked-out their sites in protest of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA-PIPA), a proposed US law that would, in essence, allow US media conglomerates to censor the Internet—or even wreck it completely. Above is a screen capture of the English-language Wikipedia.

This is all very familiar. Nearly three years ago, New Zealand Internet sites blacked out in protest over Section 92A, a truly vile piece of arse-licking for the US entertainment industry backed by former Labour MP and all-around useless political hack, Judith Tizzard. As a result, the National Party-led government backed down and abandoned Tizzard’s rubbish law. The new one is slightly better, though many of us are waiting for a Labour-Green government that will repeal this bad law.

The US protest seems to have worked, too, with the Los Angeles Times reporting that three Republican co-sponsors have seen sense and withdrawn their support. President Obama has also expressed his opposition, too.

One of the things that was remarkable about this opposition is that it came from people all over the political spectrum, from the left through to the “tea party” people. It just goes to show that there are, indeed, some issues on which all freedom-loving people can agree. Even some New Zealand sites joined the protest.

There’s been a trend over the past couple decades toward concentrating power in the hands of corporations, but every once in awhile people prevail. One day, perhaps, the people will prevail once and for all.

4 comments:

Roger Owen Green said...

Rep. Allen West (R-FL) opposes it because it gives too much power to Eric Holder. Damn, I'm agreeing with Allen West...

Arthur (AmeriNZ) said...

I feel your pain—this issue is making very strange bedfellows. However, now that I see you're also agreeing with Rick Santorum, I am becoming a little concerned…

Roger Owen Green said...

Or maybe Santorum and West are agreeing with me?

Arthur (AmeriNZ) said...

Thanks, I prefer that option.