The Stop Online Piracy Act will be on the table on Jan. 24, and many of the world’s most-visited websites are staging a protest. SOPA would allow copyright holders to seek court orders against websites accused of facilitating copyright infringement — which, in layman’s terms, means that if you upload something to YouTube that you don’t own the copyright to, YouTube could be shut down. You could also land in jail for up to 5 years.
The vague language in the act could put many top websites in jeopardy and, essentially, change the internet as we know it. If you’ve ever tweeted a photo that you didn’t take, or made a graphic for your Tumblr, or owned a fansite, or posted quotes, or used music that you didn’t compose for a video… you’d be a target.
Many consider the bill to be a form of censorship, similar to the way the China has blocked certain content from being accessed via internet. Now, major sites like Facebook, Google, Twitter, Amazon, Ebay, Wikipedia,Yahoo, Paypal, and more are planning to completely black out their services on
January 23 Jan. 18, instead displaying a message urging users to contact their reps and speak out against SOPA.
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