The Photography Network - PictureSocial

You may already know about this or you may not but as a photographer or even just a casual user of the internet this will affect you (At least in the USA). SOPA & PIPA are two pieces of legislation that threaten to censor and even ban certian aspects of our internet usage. Under SOPA authorities have the right to remove or block access to sites they feel violate the legislation. Say someone uploads a photo to PictureSocial and someone else somewhere claims that photo violates their copyright, under SOPA/PIPA the site could be taken down without warning and without even letting the owners know before hand. I highly recommend everyone read up on this proposed legislation. Many sites such as Google and Wikipedia are speaking out against the outrageous terms of SOPA. 

More about SOPA & PIPA

Washington Post


Through the Lens

Complete List of Sites going dark for SOPA Protests

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There are a couple of things you can do.  An election is coming, email both your president and congressman outlining your objections.  If it passes anyway, identify the companies that asked for the legislation and target their sites with complaints about violation.  Don't shop at those companies either.  If you cut off their web advertising and their cash flow they will see the light.

Exactly. Surprisingly though it seems a lot of people are realizing the gravity of these bills and are choosing to stand up and speak out... whether that means much to congress we will have to wait and see.

What it sounds like to me is yet another attempt by power mongers in Washington to gain further control of the populace.  The last major piece to pass was the Healthcare Reform Act, AKA Obamacare.  This may not be the forum to bring up politics.  However all these pieces of legislation are designed to try to control the people of the country.  Lest I sound like another conspiracy nut, I may be a nut but I'm not a conspiracy nut.  Under this act, if you speak out against legislation that's protected under copyright (which is a very easy thing to do), and you quote the language of the act, you can be shut down.  Healthcare was meant to restrict personal activity that they think is unhealthy, and which doctors you may see, this is intended to restrict the communication of ideas they don't like.

You're exactly right. Under these bills companies will have the power to shut out competition just because they're competition. I'm not trying to bring up politics either, just trying to draw attention to this issue and give people the chance to do something about it.

I'm not even thinking that direction.  I think it's a lot more devious and scurrilous.  What I see happening, at some point in the future with this, is that the government would, or can, attach criminal penalties which would have a very chilling effect on what is protected free speech.  You don't outlaw free speech, you make it the target of copyright infringement.  I just heard Congressman X from somewhere bloviating about the bill(s) and how wonderful they are, and how they only apply to offshore websites. Obviously, they're feeling the heat.

I think its getting increasingly difficult for politicians to ignore the outcry this has caused. It doesn't surprise me that some are jumping ship and tripping over their words. 


How true your statement is "how they only apply to offshore websites."

America has always looked to other countries around the world and having individuals arrested and deported to the USA to be judged, whether that original country accepts the crime as normal. The latest one in Europe concerns a person who is wanted for having links on his web site to a free download somewhere. The USA does not accept that being in a coma for two years and knowing nothing about his website as an excuse. It has been hijacked by another person, this has been proved and the case has been thrown out. The USA is asking , why? If it belongs to that person they must know exactly what is going on, medical facts do not stand up in USA courts!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The USA cannot accept they are now only a third world country because of the debt the world is in. They just cannot accept the fact that Brazil, China, Turkey and many others are going to lead the way. In the meantime the USA is going to attack any person who lives off shore and make their life a misery, BIG BROTHER

I don't necessarily subscribe to all you said here, but that's just politics.  Right now we have a VERY bad President, and half of Congress is almost as bad.  In November this idiot (apologies to idiots) will be tossed on his ear; given the size of his ears it will be a soft landing.  Hopefully new leadership will get things back in shape and we'll be as good as ever.  I have definite opinions about what needs to be done but no-one's asking me.  I know nothing of the situation you are addressing so no comment there.  Americans have always, until the last 20 years, cherished their freedom and independence.  There is a lot of unhappiness about the governments intrusion into our personal lives and  I am betting that hasn't changed all that much.  I have no idea what your media is telling you about our Congress and His Royal Obamaness, however I can tell you that he is immensely unpopular here, more than any President I remember going back to  before Carter and including Nixon.

According to Google - Yesterday 4.5 Million Americans signed their petition against SOPA/PIPA.

Now that's just from Google. There were dozen of other sites hosting their own petitions or linking to others. Needless to say I think a lot of people are making their voices heard.

I signed too. Sent letter to congressman. I believe a lot of folks though dont really understand what this will do if passed. People don't care until it affects them and then they ask "why didnt anyone tell me". I tried to get the message out to friends and family on Facebook but it seemed like no one really cared or understood. The only ones who did are those who are into computers, photography, etc. With over 300 million people in the US that 4.5mil is maybe a little over 10% but still is a great number of people. They say the internet is not a right and thats why I pay for it every month so the government should be policing other things like child porn, sickos online, etc. Ridiculous

Couldn't have said it better


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