I don't know if you have heard about it, but yesterday was the first hearing in the US Congress about the so called "Stop Online Piracy Act". And it was a messy day. It was all over the Internet. People cried out about it in all social networks and as a matter of fact they still do. All day long today I've been monitoring the word "SOPA" on twitter, and frankly I did not even imagine so many people and companies cared...
I won't go into details as to what SOPA actually is, you can have a pretty good idea if you read this article:
Or see this infographic:
But what SOPA will do, if accepted, in just a few words is - it will give unseen power abilities to the Copyright Owners to deal with websites that display or distribute their content. So, you might wonder - what's the big deal? Piracy is not a good thing and we should fight against it. As much as this is true, at the same time there are a few very concerning key points of the Act, which I would like to list right below.
- Your whole website can get suspended just because you have 1 small copyrighted Item even if it is not actually yours, e.g. you own a forum and somebody else uploads copyrighted pictures.
- Not only that, but you can get your DNS records changed, your Payment processing suspended and your web advertising cut off.
- So simply put - SOPA provides too much power within the Copyright Owners' hands. That's never been a good thing.
For the record, I'd like to clearly state that we here @SiteGround take Copyright Infringement very very seriously and if somebody is hosting content not owned by him, we will do all within our powers to stop it. But what SOPA wants to enforce is simply too much. It is a censorship with no limits. And it changes everything we loved the Internet for.
So, if you likewise are against this, you can go and add your name to it, so our voices be heard:
The big guys in the Internet industry already did this! You can see a letter signed by Google, Ebay, Facebook, etc here:
The SiteGround Mastermind