Speak out against SOPA and PIPA

Do your part.

I sent this to my Congressional Representatives:


I am writing to speak out against the bills before Congress regarding internet piracy – H.R.3261 “Stop Online Piracy Act” and S.968 “PROTECT IP”. I believe that these bills are flawed and overly broad in their means of enforcement and do not provide the proper processes of review and appeal which could lead so serious abuses. It is my understanding that these bills would allow action to be taken against alleged copyright infringers based solely on accusation of a content provider. This is contrary to the core values of America’s ideas of due process and innocence until proven guilty.

I am an internet user that does respect the intellectual property rights of content providers. I consider it important to properly compensate providers of creative content in order to allow them to survive and prosper and create more content. I agree that content providers need a means to protect their intellectual property but passing a bill that provides such broad powers scares me. I have for many years considered the internet the best embodiment of the first amendment – everyone now has a public forum to voice their opinion. This is a great thing and we, as a nation, should embrace and cherish this and not allow this technological advancement that gives everyone a voice to be limited by commercial interest.  I am not suggesting that enforcement of intellectual property rights should not be enforced it is simply that we need to enact laws that strike a balance between the individual rights of free expression and the rights of content providers to protect their commercial interests. I believe that the bills being considered do not find this balance and have to potential to damage the ability of the internet to provide an “individual soapbox” to all of us.
In essence, I believe that Congress can and should do a better job and draft bills that do more to protect the openness of the internet while still allowing content creator to protect their commercial interest.


George Hampton

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