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November 20, 2011
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×… $spyed's journal entry regarding this.… - Wikipedia

This is a informative article, outside of the normal DLD activities, to bring awareness to a pair of bills currently under much discussion and debate. These  bills are called called SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) and PIP (Protect IP), presented to the House of Representatives and the senate (respectively) in the United States. Later in this article, we will also discuss how these bills have a world wide significance. At the end of the article are several links to the actual bill, news articles, and forum/journals related to this topic. Our aim here is to give to a brief overview, and to answer some questions concerning this debate.

SOPA itself is an attempt to stop online piracy both domestic and foreign by the United States Gov't. It employs a variety of tactics in order to achieve this, including scanning and recording of data transfers, blocking DNS lookups of any infringing sites, and denial of payment to sites via payment providers. The wording and measures used within the bill itself make it very dangerous, allowing it to apply to sites such as Facebook, Flickr, Google, YouTube, and yes..deviantArt.

I heard this was defeated in the House already. Why discuss it?
I have yet to find a reliable source to confirm this being  defeated. In the event it does not pass the pass the House, it is expected to be reintroduced and attempted again.

This is censorship. It can't pass, it's against the first amendment / against the law/ etc
Not true. The gov't has violated First Amendment before in the case of the Patriot Act (ACLU brief:…, NY-DN…. That act was rewritten in 2005 and 2007, but is still a source of controversy due to it violating prestablished rights and overturning laws that were already in effect. Despite it violating the Bill of Rights, the bill was still passed, and was granted a 4 year extension in the spring of 2011.
What makes that scary is that, yes, this new bill should not make it through congress and should be shot down. But bills like this have made it through Congress and have been upheld later on, so we can't count on it being rejected even if it does violate First Amendment.

How can this effect me in Canada/Ireland/Anywhere outside the US?
Many popular websites depend on  social networking / linking, payment for features, or donations in order to survive. Imagine the US being unable to type type in Ebay, Facebook, Flickr, or deviantArt into theit browsers anymore, and the number of users these site would have to deal with no longer being able to sign in. Or  think about some of these site no longer being able to collect moneys from US residents- IE, Ebay not being able to process US payment, dA not being able to process subscription or good orders.

Piracy needs to be stopped. If it takes a heavy hand to do it...
Pirates are resourceful. Much more resourceful then a simple DNS block. goto:'s have existed for a long time, straight IP and peer to peer via IP address would still exist..
This  bill would be like putting a bandaid on your knee because you cut your finger. It would not help the problem at all.… (Time : Techland)… (SOPA, PDF Format, R1)… (SOPA: Google Warns Lawmakers That Online Piracy Bill Could Depress Investment - Huffington Post)… (SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) lawmaker opposition grows as debate heats up - Washington Post)… (SOPA Won’t Stop Online Piracy, Would Censor Everyone Else - Time : Techland)… (SOPA's latest threat: IP blocking, privacy-busting packet inspection - Cnet)

SOPA @ Google :…

Please, read about this issue, educate yourself, and educate others.
Thank you.

Prepared by Ebahr
Stash is being funky, and I'm unable to edit the article for this correction: Stop Online Privacy Act should read Stop Online Piracy Act in the second textual paragraph. Opps. TY! :)
This is a informative article, outside of the normal DLD activities, to bring awareness to a pair of bills currently under much discussion and debate.
Additional links:

[link] : EFF
[link] : American Censorship
[link] : Change.Org

[link] : Whitehouse petition

[link] : Regarding SOPA & deviantART

Question regarding this from =Blonde-Walf, answered in comments but edited in here so it doesn't get lost:
Can I just clarify a few things?
1 - Why will they block entire sites instead of single pages which break the act?
2 - To what extent will this affect fanart/fiction? Will it have to stop all together, or will it just mean there are tighter rules on how much is copied and how much is the artist's own work and crediting, etc?

That is one change in the wording between PIPA and SOPA: The internet service provider (IE Verizon, Time Warner, etc) has the option to use numeric IP blocking and only block offending pages, or to block from the domain name itself (thus blocking the entire site). One of the problems with this is that blocking the offending pages only would require Deep Packet inspection, a technology that is considered intrusive and that many providers do not have the capability to fulfill. ?[link]
Also, if a provider did block only the offending page, that still leaves the site open for denied payments through their ads, payment providers, and donations. So a two-fold penalty can take place: A link to copyrighted material is found; The page or the site itself is blocked; then Paypal, AdSense, Visa/Mastercard, etc are contacted and told to refuse payment to the host site. Even with deep packet inspections, the site can still be screwed. :/ [link]
Fanfic, I'm not completely familiar on how that will work out. Reports are various- I've read some things that say it'll be a breech, others that say it is immune as a derivative. Under the current copyright laws, "Fanfiction is not infringing if it constitutes fair use of the underlying copyrighted work. In determining whether a particular use constitutes fair use, courts consider the following four factors:
1. the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;
2. the nature of the copyrighted work;
3. the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and
4. the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.”
In some cases, the copyright and trademark laws concerning it all is about as clear as mud. [link] : Wikipedia: Legal issues with fan fiction

... Just to expand it a little further, here's a quote citing Flickr as an example. Flickr, like dA, uses Ad-based and pay-perview/pay-per-click banner advertising to support their site, so many of the concerns raised for Flickr also apply to dA. Imagine if one user on dA uploaded a copyrighted font, violated copyright in an image or in a piece of writing, and the effect it has over the entire site. Also note, the complaints are made to the internet providers and payment processors, not to dA (or in the example, Flickr) itself. So dA may not even have the chance to rectify the situation before action is taken.
"Flickr takes copyright issues seriously, and complies with DMCA safe harbor requirements by taking down photos when it gets a valid complaint, establishing a repeat infringer policy, etc.. But it doesn’t proactively monitor its user-generated content for copyright infringement. The language of SOPA is vague enough that an individual or corporate rightsholder could claim this lack of monitoring as “taking … deliberate actions to avoid confirming a high probability of the use of the … site to carry out acts that constitute a violation.” Flickr uses an ad network to place advertisements, and accepts payments for premium accounts. Both of those revenue streams could be suspended in a matter of days by a single complaint, and the process of reactivating them could be long and complex." - (Source: [link] , What's On the Blacklist? Three Sites That SOPA Could Put at Risk By Parker Higgins)
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Starryskystorm Featured By Owner Mar 14, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
They are back from hell ones again.…
KoreanVWood Featured By Owner Jan 25, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'm glad so many people stood together to stop the SOPA and PIPA acts, however, our fight isn't over. ACTA is another act (yeah, we seriously need to vote out the politicians who keep pushing this stuff....) that is just like SOPA and PIPA.

It makes you wonder why the media is so silent about reporting these and having the people educated about the issue huh?

To read more: [link]
Billie-Bonce Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2012
I beware, SOPA is just a red herring. The noise about it just distracts people from the real problem. The devastation of MegaUpload clearly demonstrated that they don't need SOPA to kill websites with many millions of users and to charge people for nothing, and not only within the USA.

The real problem is that everything is sold, and everything is copyrighted, and, by the way, the copyright owners are not the artists. The American understanding of copyright is faulty. (Compare - in Japan anybody can use a popular character to make fanart, fanfiction, plush dolls, and to sale them. It only rises the popularity of a character). The American understanding of what damage to property was caused by sharing a copyrighted content in the Internet is faulty, too. (They assume that everybody who accessed pirated content would never buy it, otherwise they would certainly buy it. In reality, 90% or even more of those who accessed such content for free would never pay for it anyway, and there is a significant number of those who wouldn't buy it without first looking at it for free.)

Alas. I admire artists, but I hate copyright owners.
CuryPotato Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2012  Student General Artist
whats worse - stealing chocolate Mars bars or copying an online document? to see the full argument (made a very long time ago by charlieissocoollike) go here --> [link]
Forcedlactationlover Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
As I have read things, The bill has been TEMPORARILY withdrawn. It will be back, in some modified, but probably still dangerous, form. It's still censorship, and government usually uses a cannon to do a flyswatter's job. Congress has yet to successfully ban anything. Prohibition was a massive failure. And the so-called 'War on Drugs' collapsed years ago. But the idiot regulations are still on the books. This would be no more successful, and just as intrusive Yes, there is online piracy, but this is NOT the way to stop it. Piracy will stop only when it risks more than it stands to gain by continuing. And unless, and until, foreign governments enforce the laws already on the books, a new one won't help anyway.
DubleDz Featured By Owner Jan 19, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
will DA get closed down?
silver-maple-leaf Featured By Owner Jan 19, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
xXHannahBearXx Featured By Owner Jan 19, 2012
Fanfiction is in DEFINITE danger. It revolves around copy-righted material.
silver-maple-leaf Featured By Owner Jan 19, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
xXHannahBearXx Featured By Owner Jan 19, 2012
I know. It's very sad...
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