You probably noticed some of your favorite sites were down yesterday, luckily it was only a temporary strike protesting the SOPA & PIPA bill heading to vote on January 24. But if the act does go through a lot of your favorite sites and the internet in general will be censored.
This bill sounds fine in theory, an attempt to protect the entertainment industry from illegal pirating — but what it would really be doing is censoring many of the sites we use and love.
A great video created by Fight For The Future a nn-profit created to defend online freedom, does a pretty spectacular job highlighting the problems with SOPA & PIPA.
How This Will Impact You
A lot of people are highly concerned about being censored, which makes sense, but this bill can also negatively impact people’s finances as well.
- For one, sites like Craigslist would no longer be able operate under the new regulations meaning you couldn’t easily sell your old stuff or buy cheap things you need.
- YouTube would also be affected by the bill considering users can post copyrighted songs and footage. Although not everyone lucks out with a huge YouTube following and paycheck, but some people do make a little on the side from their videos. The top YouTube grossers make anywhere from $100,000 to $300,000 a year.
- New start-ups will be particularly vulnerable if this bill passes because of the ease with which they can get sued if their filter process isn’t on point. The MyBankTracker team covers a lot of great start-ups, many of which help get a better handle on finance. As a matter of fact, even MyBankTracker was a start-up at one point. Basically, any company promoting innovation can be shut down before they even get a chance to make a change in the world.
Granted it may not seem like a direct impact on your wallet, but the loss of revenue and advertising dollars from these sites will eventually trickle down to you as well. This is also detrimental for future technological innovations that could potentially impact the way we conduct payments, save money and budget.
Bill Not Likely To Pass
With all the internet backlash and support against this bill I would be highly surprised if it actually passed. After a prolonged period of silence on the issue, Obama released a statement saying he “will not support legislation that reduces freedom of expression, increases cybersecurity risk, or undermines the dynamic, innovative global Internet.”
Many other representatives began advertising their protest against the act while people started writing in and petitioning against this act. With Internet companies such as Google, Wikipedia, Facebook and Twitter against the SOPA & PIPA acts, it would be a poor move by politicians to pass this act — especially with the upcoming elections.
Tuesday, January 24 will let us know the outcome of this bill – hopefully it will be one that will support the Internet as opposed to censor it.