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No SOPA Vote Until 2012 181

jfruhlinger writes "A victory, or a just a breather? The U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee has postponed further debate on the controversial Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) until after Congress' holiday break. At the urging of some SOPA opponents, Representative Lamar Smith, a Texas Republican and committee chairman, said Friday he will consider a hearing or a classified briefing on the bill's impact on cybersecurity." Update: 12/17 04:28 GMT by T : "Or not," as an anonymous reader comments below. "Despite the fact that Congress was supposed to be out of session until the end of January, the Judiciary Committee has just announced plans to come back to continue the markup this coming Wednesday. This is rather unusual and totally unnecessary. But it shows just how desperate Hollywood is to pass this bill as quickly as possible, before the momentum of opposition builds up even further."
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No SOPA Vote Until 2012

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  • OR NOT...? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 16, 2011 @08:15PM (#38405232)

    Update.... Or not. Despite the fact that Congress was supposed to be out of session until the end of January, the Judiciary Committee has just announced plans to come back to continue the markup this coming Wednesday. This is rather unusual and totally unnecessary. But it shows just how desperate Hollywood is to pass this bill as quickly as possible, before the momentum of opposition builds up even further.

  • Newsflash: (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Tastecicles ( 1153671 ) on Friday December 16, 2011 @08:35PM (#38405410)

    Outlawing something pushes it underground []. It does not make any perceived problem disappear, in fact it creates more. Some places have actually allowed controlled use of what would otherwise be completely illegal substances such as cocaine [] and hash [] because otherwise there would be so many problems the domestic security services would be overwhelmed.

  • Quote of the Day (Score:5, Interesting)

    by mbone ( 558574 ) on Friday December 16, 2011 @09:42PM (#38405794)

    Quote of the day, from the Washington Post [] : "As a general rule, when the people saying that this will have a horrible, chilling impact on something are the ones who created that thing in the first place, and the people who are saying, “Oh, no, it’ll be fine, it only targets the bad actors” are members of the Motion Picture Association of America, it seems obvious whose opinion you should heed."

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 16, 2011 @09:44PM (#38405798)

    There is a reason why Lamar Smith and others are hedging: If they tighten the rules too much, people will stop playing ball with them.

    First, if the US plays too high and mighty with DNS and the IP address space, it is trivial to fragment the Net. Heck, China has done that with Kanji-only hostnames. There would be another standard made to route packets from sources to destinations, and right now, people use the current one out of laziness... but piss off too many people, and they will make their own ICANN. There are so many nations who can't stand the US right now that dinking around with foreign domain names may be just be the impetus that causes BRIC to make their own DNS.

    Second, what SOPA will do is cause everyone to use VPN services. Right now, people really don't care, so covert monitoring of real criminals is easy. However, once people go to VPNs as a matter of course, the US is forced to either actively hunt down VPNs, or force ISPs to block them, neither a winning game. So, clamping down harder may just result in a more determined and harder to catch prey, weather it is child pornographers, enemy combatants, or serious crime. One can think about the ticking time bomb scenario, or an attack against something Western, and realize that had SOPA or other laws pushed people to take drastic action, the perps likely would have been caught.

    Yes, the media industry is all over SOPA, but it would make law enforcement and tracking potential threats a task far harder than it is now.

  • Amazing (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ixnaay ( 662250 ) on Friday December 16, 2011 @09:47PM (#38405810)
    Somehow I've missed this issue over the last couple of months (I read /. daily, my memory must be getting worse than I thought). At first look, the bill reads like a bad joke. The wording of this bill as it stands now will allow the take down of any website which provides user forums / comments. Simply visit the forum, post a link to download copy-written material or other 'illegal' data (which covers a tremendous amount of ground), and the owner of the website has committed a felony and immediately loses all advertising income.The owner is then guilty - you can't even say 'guilty until proven innocent' - you've likely lost your main income, their reputation among 'reputable' businesses is gone, and their opportunities for defense and damages seem pretty insignificant as stated in the bill.

    The user forum example just scratches the surface of absurd possibilities.

    Amazon selling a book which could facilitate access to whatever a corporation declares is 'illegal' data,e.g. computing book which touches on bit-torrents.
    Services like Pandora (you can record it on your home PC) or Google Music (obviously)
    Any data backup company (oops, had illegal data on my backed up hard drive - bye bye Carbonite).

    Did I miss something? I don't see where in this bill that any line is drawn between a site like Pirate's Bay and the examples above.
  • by artor3 ( 1344997 ) on Friday December 16, 2011 @10:33PM (#38405986)

    That's how it used to work, but Wisconsin taught them a valuable lesson. Propose something, and if people scream: fuck 'em, push it through anyway! They won't get to vote you out for months or years, by which time many of them will have given up on democracy, allowing you to win in a landslide.

  • Re:OR NOT...? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by JDG1980 ( 2438906 ) on Friday December 16, 2011 @10:48PM (#38406070)
    I'm sure the MAFIAA has a VIP list of people who aren't to be threatened or sued, and that this list includes the family members of Reps and Senators.
  • by jasno ( 124830 ) on Friday December 16, 2011 @10:58PM (#38406124) Journal

    It's likely our complaints will fall on deaf ears. We don't need a political solution - we need a technical one.

    There has to be some group of people looking at ways around SOPA... Alternate DNS systems, Tor, tunneling, encryption... all of these things should be able to defeat whatever measures they throw at us. The real way to defeat SOPA is to render it irrelevant.

    We can do this now, before it's passed, or we can do it after, but we're going to do it regardless.

  • by jamesh ( 87723 ) on Friday December 16, 2011 @11:56PM (#38406478)

    If you just spent 2 million dollars of your own and investors money making a movie, the idea that you'd then let people just take it for free would seem ridiculous to you too. A movie or a song isn't just 'an idea', it represents (potentially) a lot of hard work and a lot of money.

    Your desire for profits DOES NOT justify why those "ideas" should be arbitrarily declared "property" and have government-enforced, rights-infringing monopolies slapped on them.

    It's not just an idea though. It's a body of work. Just because you've figured out a way to duplicate it with no cost to yourself doesn't magically take away its designation of "property".

    If you can't figure out a way to make money without resorting to censorship, then you shouldn't be spending investors' money and you shouldn't even be in business! It's simply not the government's job to provide you with a business model and censorship powers, period.

    Well... I think we obviously agree that censorship is never the right solution, and I doubt a good solution exists, but if a profit can't be made from making movies, then no movies will be made, and that would be sad.

    Somewhere along the way people decided that because they can take something then it's right to take it, and they'll fight tooth and nail to stop anyone who dares interrupt their free ride. Yes I agree that pretty much every solution the government has come up with to stop copyright infringement is beyond stupid, but that doesn't mean that you should feel good about taking something you didn't pay for.

  • by Chewbacon ( 797801 ) on Saturday December 17, 2011 @12:02AM (#38406516)

    Retardican primary votes when the media's too busy covering Rick Perry's latest stupid statement

    Right, cause bipartisan politics has done wonders for the countries so far. Cut that shit and get in the mindset of working with a diverse crowd to stop it. How about you look up why we have parties and see why they are no longer any good to us and only make the American people hate each other. Take any democrat and republican and you'll see they agree on something.

  • Troll, eh? (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 17, 2011 @01:23AM (#38406848)

    This is exactly how it went down in Wisconsin. Not a peep was said about the real agenda until the Republicans got in, then jobs jobs jobs turned into bust the unions and mandate Voter ID to game the voting process. Guess the facts don't fit into some moderator's alternate reality, though.

  • Re:Amazing (Score:4, Interesting)

    by jesseck ( 942036 ) on Saturday December 17, 2011 @02:00AM (#38406930)
    Then this could be used against the bill supporters. Maybe Congressman Smith has a family- say a brother, who owns business with an online presence. Post the link there. Maybe his child was downloading and sharing MPAA files on his wifi. What about a family member in College- encourage them to watch online films. These "leaders" are blinded because they don't think the Bill will affect them. It will, hopefully directly, and then they will (hopefully) realize their mistake. Of course, a greedy "public servant" getting fat stacks of cash from lobbyists probably won't feel guilty, but maybe their family and family's friends will ostracize them.
  • by AngryDeuce ( 2205124 ) on Saturday December 17, 2011 @11:01AM (#38408418)

    And then, when the people start to band together and unite to recall the governor and the rest of the filth following the rules of recall here in Wisconsin, well hell, let's just change the rules! Let's redraw the districts to be totally favorable to the Republican party and then sue to try and force the recalls to happen following the new districts! And if that doesn't disenfranchise enough people, let's pass a voter-ID law so that students can't vote (they're all dirty socialists anyway, amirite?) and not only that, but the elderly, gotta keep them from voting, too, since they're furious at Paul Ryan and the Republican plan to destroy Medicare. That laser focus on jobs, meanwhile Wisconsin has lost jobs for the last 5 months, Scott Walker says "no thanks" to a billion dollars in Federal Aid to beef up our rail infrastructure prompting that money to go to California instead (Here's an op-ed from the L.A. Times rubbing it in. [])

    Living here in Wisconsin for the last 10 years, I never expected the depths to which politics would sink here in this state. Scott "dropped the bomb" all right, they're on a scorched-earth campaign. If there is civil war in this country, I fully expect Wisconsin will be where the opening shots ring out. Everyone is at each other's throats now.

    At least the Canadian border is close by. If the shit truly hits the fan, I'm throwing the family in the car, running north, and claiming refugee status.

"Paul Lynde to block..." -- a contestant on "Hollywood Squares"