January 18, 2012
Censorship in America.
Since all of my readers are in Europe, I don't know how many of you have heard of this hot-topic. Tomorrow the U.S. government is set to decide whether or not to pass the SOPA and PIPA acts. In short, these acts were proposed to protect anyone who creates anything from copy write infringement. While I applaud the idea that individual's content should be protected, there is a major problem with the way the government plan on going about it. Anyone who dares to use an image or something they found on the internet may be reported to authorities, and if someone has ten strikes in a period of six months, they can risk a prison sentence of up to five years. Now, I've always tried to cite images and information, but who hasn't grabbed the first Google search result they could find to use in a project or presentation? Even blogs and small business websites may be subject to these laws, making it more difficult to share ideas and contribute on a larger scale. Of course I've signed the petitions against it and written my representatives as asked. I've even tried to raise awareness of this using social media as many are doing today, but I'm a bit concerned about how much impact any of this will really have. This is all a very scary concept for someone who was brought up to believe the government couldn't impose their will on private lives for the sake of it. I'm not a conspiracy theorist, but this whole situation has a distinct "Big Brother is Watching" undertone to it which is a little difficult to grasp. I'm not hard-pressed to imagine that if these bills do in fact pass, it will only be the beginning of real censorship in America unlike anything we've ever seen.