Sopa Essay

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Christine Meyer Sociology Prof Parent Mid-Term Paper Over The Hill And Off The Cliff: The Fight Against Web Censorship. Recently there has been an explosion of interest in something called SOPA. SOPA is an acronym for Stop Online Piracy Act; its purpose is of course to stop online piracy. It has been all over the news and all over the web. Most of the attention it got was negative reactions and opposition. A bill that was intended to set some sort of boundaries on the web would have turned into a huge amount of censorship and hindering if not shutting down some of the biggest websites out there. During this time the World Wide Web banded together to protest SOPA by media blackouts including Wikipedia and Wired on January 18th to show what would happen if the bill were to become in effect (Suzanne Choney). Thanks to the media blackouts the protests were successful. The bill was put on the shelf and the complaints have been considered. It was a win for the web that day, however most do not know that there are other bills extremely similar to SOPA that have practically gone unnoticed. While the web believes it has won and has died down a stronger opponent has wiggled its way in unnoticed. That opponent is called ACTA. ACTA is an acronym for Anti Counterfeiting Trade Agreement. This was signed by the U.S in 2011 and was more “expansive then anything we saw in SOPA” (Kain). What is a bit scary is a lot of the discussions and negotiations went on behind closed doors, a lot was done in secret and it is still a bit unclear how ACTA will effect U.S. laws (Kain). “ACTA was pushed through without even getting ratified by the Senate, holding the U.S. to international laws that never went through congress” (Higginbotham). ACTA will affect the world more negatively then positively and will do more damage then SOPA could ever do, yet SOPA was protested

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