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SOPA and PIPA anti-piracy bills shelved


By Nicole Kobie

Posted on 20 Jan 2012 at 16:54

A pair of controversial US anti-piracy bills have been shelved following a high-profile online protest.

The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect IP Act (PIPA) drew criticism from web giants including Wikipedia and Google, which complained the copyright protecting provisions would hurt the freedom of the internet.

Wikipedia and a host of other sites shut down for 24 hours on Wednesday, while Google publicised the pair of bills, asking users to contact their representatives.

There is no reason that the legitimate issues raised by many about this bill cannot be resolved

The next day, several high-profile politicians pulled back from the bills, and now next week's vote on PIPA has been delayed.

"In light of recent events, I have decided to postpone Tuesday's vote on the Protect IP Act," said Senator Harry Reid.

"There is no reason that the legitimate issues raised by many about this bill cannot be resolved," he added. "We must take action to stop these illegal practices... We made good progress through the discussions we've held in recent days, and I am optimistic that we can reach a compromise in the coming weeks."

SOPA stalled

SOPA was supposed to be discussed in Congress in February, but it too has been delayed, with the House of Representatives saying it would "postpone consideration of the legislation until there is wider agreement on a solution".

“I have heard from the critics and I take seriously their concerns regarding proposed legislation to address the problem of online piracy," said House Judiciary Committee chairman Lamar Smith. "It is clear that we need to revisit the approach on how best to address the problem of foreign thieves that steal and sell American inventions and products."

Smith stressed that online piracy remained an issue that was "too big to ignore".

“The Committee will continue work with both copyright owners and internet companies to develop proposals that combat online piracy and protect America’s intellectual property," he said. "We welcome input from all organisations and individuals who have an honest difference of opinion about how best to address this widespread problem."

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User comments


The alternative was to take the USA off the internet so that they couldn't break it for the rest of us.
They could then have a Darwin-denying, boob free, Hollywood owned LAN. But at least it would conform to SOPA/PIPA....

By cheysuli on 20 Jan 2012



Love it!!!

By monotok on 20 Jan 2012

My only concern now is what will they try next?

By tech3475 on 20 Jan 2012

tech3475 you are right to be concerned

I doubt if this is the last we'll hear of this.

By Lacrobat on 20 Jan 2012

Delayed != Shelved

The body of the article says that the bills have been delayed/postponed.

That does NOT mean they have been shelved.

By qpw3141 on 21 Jan 2012

so these so called pirates only copy American inventions then. That's all right we are safe from them as nobody else invents anything.

By curiousclive on 21 Jan 2012

Not Quite

"so these so called pirates only copy American inventions then. That's all right we are safe from them as nobody else invents anything."

I read it quite differently.

The law is to prevent foreigners stealing American inventions which is "obviously" wrong - not to stop Americans stealing everyone else's ideas which is their birthright as the "Land of the Fee"

By CLCKMSS on 23 Jan 2012


..MegaUpload is gone, FileSonic is nerfed to death and everyone needs written permission from the US government to access files on their desktop.
Don't encrypt any files, because the US government will have you in a orange jumpsuit before you can say "pirate?"!

By cheysuli on 23 Jan 2012

Now it is the Open Act...

which is on the line. Which doesn't look so bad, until you look at the details.

No websites can be registered (anywhere in the world), without verified identification information.

Not a problem for business sites or general interest sites, but a big hurdle for rights campaigners and political sites criticising dictatorships etc.

By big_D on 23 Jan 2012

Verified identification information

Interesting - verified by whom?

Does this mean all the world's people will be required to have U.S. supplied ID number soon?

By the way, Cheysuli, don't encrypt anything on a U.K. system either or the Gov/Police/Special Branch will have you put away for two years if you forget the password.

By greemble on 23 Jan 2012


... who said it was shelved?

I hear it's been delayed. When the world is busy fighting some form of cyber crime it might just pop up in the background as some sort of sub-clause ambiguously written to hide it's true purpose.

By nicomo on 23 Jan 2012


It is part of the changes for ICANN. A local passport or ID card will probably be necessary.

By big_D on 24 Jan 2012

The rise & rise of American fascism.

What "inventions"? What "products "?
IP is a joke. A desperate lunge at a revenue stream dreamt up by the best brains in the field of fiscal oppression. The US is the 2 year old child of the world that has been given a name tag maker for Xmas and won't stop until everything has been labelled "mine".

By dubiou on 24 Jan 2012

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