I don’t think that any amount of “piracy” justifies this kind of depraved indifference to the consequences of one’s actions. Big Content haven’t just declared war on Boing Boing and Reddit and the rest of the “fun” Internet: they’ve declared war on every person who uses the net to publicize police brutality, every oppressed person in the Arab Spring who used the net to organize protests and publicize the blood spilled by their oppressors, every abused kid who used the net to reveal her father as a brutalizer of children, every gay kid who used the net to discover that life is worth living despite the torment she’s experiencing, every grassroots political campaigner who uses the net to make her community a better place — as well as the scientists who collaborate online, the rescue workers who coordinate online, the makers who trade tips online, the people with rare diseases who support each other online, and the independent creators who use the Internet to earn their livings.
The contempt for human rights on display with SOPA and PIPA is more than foolish. Foolishness can be excused. It’s more than greed. Greed is only to be expected. It is evil, and it must be fought.
I stand in solidarity with the many sites that are “going dark” on January 18 to protest PIPA and SOPA. While I may or may not go dark myself (need to figure out technical issues and scheduling), I do encourage you to take this opportunity to familiarize yourself with the issue. Check out the language of the bills (SOPA here, PIPA here). Read the latest updates (here, among other places; Michael Ham’s article describing how the legislation would stifle scientific debate is worth a look). And then contact your representatives and tell them what you think.
Act as if this need not be tolerated.