Obama Administration Streaming Proposal Felony

Obama administration looks to make unauthorized streaming a felony

By on August 6, 2013 at 11:40 AM.

Obama administration looks to make unauthorized streaming a felony

Although pressure from activists and major tech companies helped kill off the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) last year, it looks as though the Obama administration wants to bring a key part of it back from the grave. The Washington Post reports that the Department of Commerce’s Internet Policy Task Force last week released a report that recommended classifying illegal content streaming as a felony. More →

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Sen. Wyden and Rep. Issa introduce vague ‘Internet Bill of Rights’

By on June 12, 2012 at 11:15 AM.

Sen. Wyden and Rep. Issa introduce vague ‘Internet Bill of Rights’

Internet Bill Of Rights Proposed

Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Representative Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) want to make sure that Congress doesn’t try to pass another piece of legislation like the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) that failed spectacularly earlier this year. The Hill reports that the two lawmakers are now calling for an “Internet bill of rights” that will effectively block Congress from passing bills that attempt to restrict online freedom. According to The Hill, the proposal gives “digital citizens” the legal right to “a free, uncensored Internet” and an “open, unobstructed Internet.” The Hill also says that the proposal mentions “rights of equality, privacy, sharing and property on the Internet.” All of this sounds nice, but it’s also incredibly vague, especially since the lawmakers introduced no mechanism for actually enforcing all of these great principles. What’s more, both lawmakers seem to have a different personal definition for what an “open, unobstructed Internet” means since Wyden is a strong proponent of net neutrality while Issa has voted to repeal the FCC’s net neutrality rules for wireline services. More →

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Hollywood loves sequels: MPAA to push SOPA follow-up in 2013

By on May 22, 2012 at 1:30 PM.

Hollywood loves sequels: MPAA to push SOPA follow-up in 2013

SOPA Anti-Piracy Bill 2013

The first version was hardly a hit, but Hollywood is already planning a sequel to the Stop Online Piracy Act that it will push in 2013, reports claim. Comments made by Motion Picture Association of America chief executive Chris Dodd suggest that the MPAA will work to get a new anti-piracy billed passed next year, and it plans to take a more cunning approach. “We’re going to have to be more subtle and consumer-oriented,” Dodd said of the new legislation that the MPAA will push, according to Variety. “We’re on the wrong track if we describe this as thievery.” Details surrounding the organization’s plans were not discussed, and Dodd noted that he will not be able to lobby his former U.S. Senate cohorts until next year. “I can’t say anything to them about this for another seven months, but I think my colleagues understand how important this is.” SOPA was put on hold in January after a number of widely publicized protests rattled lawmakers. More →

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Thousands rally against CISPA cybersecurity bill

By on April 26, 2012 at 12:45 PM.

Thousands rally against CISPA cybersecurity bill

The controversial Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA), which is supported by more than 100 members of the House of Representatives, is scheduled to be discussed in Congress on Friday, where it will be the first bill to go to a vote since the collapse of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) in January. The bill looks to give businesses and the federal government legal protection to share cyber threats with one another in an effort to prevent online attacks. Internet privacy and neutrality advocates, such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation, feel the bill does not contain enough limits on how and when the government may monitor private information, however, and they fear that such power may be used to locate and punish file sharers and those who infringe on copyrights rather than hackers. More →

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RIAA CEO says Google and Wikipedia ‘misinformed’ the public about SOPA, PIPA

By on March 2, 2012 at 3:00 PM.

RIAA CEO says Google and Wikipedia ‘misinformed’ the public about SOPA, PIPA

The RIAA’s CEO Cary Sherman said that he hopes the Stop Online Piracy Act protest were a “one-time experience.” In an op-ed piece written in The New York Times earlier this month, Sherman accused companies such as Google and Wikipedia of exploiting their popular status to “misinform” the public. He also claimed that by opposing the bill, these companies “were supporting foreign criminals selling counterfeit pharmaceuticals to Americans.” In a separate interview, Sherman said he believes that “readers online” accepted misinformation being spread by Google and Wikipedia about SOPA and PIPA based on the assumption that “if it comes from these sources, it must be true.”  He claimed members of Congress were “very frustrated that they couldn’t get out their side of the story.” Sherman continued, “hopefully that was a one-time experience that came from a lot of different things coming together where a lot of different people came to the conclusion that this was a terrible piece of legislation.”

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Megaupload shutdown did nothing to slow piracy, study finds

By on February 9, 2012 at 2:25 PM.

Megaupload shutdown did nothing to slow piracy, study finds

The recent federal takedown of notorious file-sharing service Megaupload was initially seen as a huge victory for owners of copyrighted music and movies, but new research shows this may not be the case. Federal prosecutors successfully shuttered the service last month and arrested seven men associated with Megaupload including site founder Kim Dotcom, who is said to have earned $42 million from the site in 2010 alone. What was initially thought to be a victory for movie studios and record labels is turning out to be an empty win, however, as Megaupload’s closure has had almost no impact on file-sharing. Read on for more. More →

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Facebook to become the newest target of hacker group Anonymous [video]

By on January 23, 2012 at 1:05 PM.

Facebook to become the newest target of hacker group Anonymous [video]

Over the past week, notorious hacker group Anonymous has launched numerous DDoS attacks that disrupted service to a number of popular websites. The global hacker collective recently took down websites belonging to the Department of Justice, Universal Music, the Record Industry Association of America and the Motion Picture Association of America to protest SOPA, PIPA and the takedown of Megaupload. According to a new video posted on Monday, Anonymous now aims to take down Facebook. It in unclear as to why Facebook is the group’s new target; while the video mentions SOPA as part of its reason for the attack, Facebook openly opposed the controversial bill. In the past, Anonymous has listed potential targets as the United Nations, Xbox Live, U.S. Bank, Twitter and YouTube. More →

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SOPA put on hold as father of the Web calls for Americans to protest

By on January 20, 2012 at 12:00 PM.

SOPA put on hold as father of the Web calls for Americans to protest

Tim Berners-Lee, father of the World Wide Web as long as you’re not asking Al Gore, has come out against the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) currently causing an Internet uprising. “If you’re in America then you should go and call somebody or send an email to protest against these bills because they have not been put together to respect human rights as is appropriate in a democratic country,” Berners-Lee told the Sydney Morning Herald. SOPA, which is currently being revised before it is again considered by Congress, would give the U.S. government the ability to block access to foreign websites accused of unlawfully hosting or distributing copyrighted content. Big names such as Google, Wikipedia and Reddit recently protested the bill by temporarily blocking access to their websites or urging users to sign a petition. “It affects all the stuff on the Internet working and something which would affect what you want to connect to, where you want to connect to,” Berners-Lee said. Representative Lamar Smith on Friday said that the House Judiciary Committee would “postpone consideration of the legislation until there is wider agreement on a solution.” More →

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Google censors homepage, urges people to fight SOPA and PIPA

By on January 18, 2012 at 10:40 AM.

Google censors homepage, urges people to fight SOPA and PIPA

While a number of high-profile websites such as Wikipedia and Reddit went dark on Wednesday to protest web censorship bills, Google made its opinions known and urged users to do the same. Two bills before congress known as SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) and PIPA (Protect IP Act) have caused outrage among internet users who fear the bills may bring about unwarranted censorship. Google has come out in opposition of the bills, and it wants users to sign a petition to make their voices heard by Congress. “Two bills before Congress, known as the Protect IP Act (PIPA) in the Senate and the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) in the House, would censor the Web and impose harmful regulations on American business,” Google said on its site. “Millions of Internet users and entrepreneurs already oppose SOPA and PIPA. The Senate will begin voting on January 24th. Please let them know how you feel. Sign this petition urging Congress to vote NO on PIPA and SOPA before it is too late.” People can sign Google’s petition by following the read link below. More →

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Google to protest SOPA and PIPA on homepage tomorrow

By on January 17, 2012 at 5:05 PM.

Google to protest SOPA and PIPA on homepage tomorrow

The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP Act (PIPA) have driven the Internet into a frenzy, with numerous Silicon Valley companies objecting the entertainment industry backed bill. Earlier this week, Wikipedia, Reddit and numerous other companies announced blackouts scheduled for Wednesday in protest of both SOPA and PIPA. Google too plans to make its opposition clear, however the company won’t be blacking out its website. Instead it will raise awareness using the Google search homepage. “Like many businesses, entrepreneurs, and Web users, we oppose these bills because there are smart, targeted ways to shut down foreign rogue Web sites without asking American companies to censor the Internet,” a Google representative said. “So tomorrow we will be joining many other tech companies to highlight this issue on our U.S. homepage.” When asked how these protest links would be displayed, Google told CNET it will not replace the company’s logo, but it will post a link on its homepage that leads to more information. Google’s homepage is the most visited web page in the world and the company’s actions will definitely draw plenty of attention. More →

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