What is SOPA and how it is damaging to the internet.

January 18, 2012

On January 18th,2012 Gear Whore Reviews and many other large websites like Wikipedia and Google will be protesting the proposed the Stop Online Piracy Act better known as SOPA. SOPA is the child of organizations like the MPAA and RIAA who want to “protect” their intellectual properties and copyrights by taking down websites off the internet that link to or contain copyrighted materials. Piracy is wrong that is not an issue, but when private companies have the power to take down websites with government support it opens up the possibility for abuse.  It poses a serious threat to freedom of speech on the internet.

A constant theme that has been seen with the copyright wars between content owners and the internet is who’s responsibility is it to police the internet. The MPAA and their friends have been trying to delegate responsibility of policing the internet on ISPs and websites when it really is their problem to deal with. These organizations have come out numerous times trying to get everyone to do the work that they should be doing and now in their latest ploy they want the government to support their efforts in trying to get their way with the internet by forcing websites and ISPs to be content babysitters. Websites have a responsibility to take down copyrighted material when they see it or are notified of it, but they shouldn’t have to police the internet.

Damages to the internet-The technical details

A major issue with SOPA was the proposal for filtering the DNS system or Domain Name Servers of the internet. This is the system that converts website domains like www.GWRTactical.com and Google.com into internet addresses that your computer can connect to. A major issue with SOPA was the possible filtration of the DNS system of websites that are deemed “infringing”  by private organizations or even possible domain deletion from the DNS system. If you know how the internet works than you can see how damaging this can be to the internet. Many tech companies like Google, Facebook,Open DNS and other numerous companies have come out against SOPA and laws like it because of its potential to damage the internet and the systems that make it work.

SOPA also opens up the door for IP address filtration. SOPA may enable the government the authority to force ISPs to block websites from being accessed. This can only work by monitoring by your web activity, this will essentially destroy privacy on the internet on the ISP side of things.Websites outside of the USA can’t be taken down but you can blocked from accessing it if you are in the USA.

SOPA has the potential to be extremely damaging to the internet and your freedom of speech on the internet. The internet is a place that is free to everyone to access and use how they want. The internet has no owner and should not be regulated by any one entity. Share this post and contact your local representative what you think of this proposed bill.

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