The first step to victory in the war of a free and unfettered Internet has been won. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has announced Friday morning that he will postpone the vote on the Protect I.P. Act or PIPA.
This announcement comes just two days after Internet free encyclopedia giant Wikipedia went off line for 24 hours in protest of the bill. Several other sites like reddit and boing boing also followed Wikipedia. Sites such as Google and Craigslist displayed black bans over their logos, and redirected users to information about SOPA and PIPA before going to their website.
In the announcement Reid stated that,
“In light of recent events, I have decided to postpone Tuesday’s vote on the PROTECT I.P. Act. There is no reason that the legitimate issues raised by many about this bill cannot be resolved. Counterfeiting and piracy cost the American economy billions of dollars and thousands of jobs each year, with the movie industry alone supporting over 2.2 million jobs. We must take action to stop these illegal practices. We live in a country where people rightfully expect to be fairly compensated for a day’s work, whether that person is a miner in the high desert of Nevada, an independent band in New York City, or a union worker on the back lots of a California movie studio.”
Marvelous right! Well maybe. While the actions of many citizens and websites this past week and few months has been tremendous, we are probably still going to have an SOPA or PIPA bill, it just may not exist in the way it does now.
For many people, online piracy is a serious crime. These people have money, and money tends to talk in Washington when it comes to lobbying and getting a bill passed. While many of us I’m sure would like a completely free and unregulated Internet, the government wont let that stand. So they are going to come back with a re-written version of the bill, that all of us Internet junkies who spend hours looking for the right torrent file, are still not going to like.
Kick and scream as we like, they are going to stop these sites. Congress may write out a few provisions and change some wording to protect sites like Wikipedia, Google, Facebook, and twitter. But sites like Pirate Bay, Demonoid, and Megaupload, will still be a thing of the past.
That’s unless you still know how to find them.