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Dave Morgan

Wikipedia blackout

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Hi.Just got out of work & came down to the library to look up some obscure bands I've been trying to track down and came across this...http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/English_Wikipedia_anti-SOPA_blackoutI haven't read any further than the Wikimedia page but find myself in a very ambivalent mood regarding the proposed measures (or goals). Anti-piracy... great. Anti-freedom... erm, no.Does anyone have a good strong opinion to help me settle into a groove?Cheers,D

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Well it will kill craigslist and wikipedia. I don't think it will go through though. There is too much opposition.

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Well it will kill craigslist and wikipedia. I don't think it will go through though. There is too much opposition.
Blimey, you don't hang about do you!I really hope you're right. Killing off the biggest public compendia is surely retrograde, and difficult to paint in a good light.D

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The intent is good, but the implementation clearly shows little understanding of the technology. Not surprising, since laws are written by lawyers and not technical people.This is roughly equivalent to stopping drive-by shootings by telling General Motors that they must stop people with guns from riding in cars.

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Well it will kill craigslist and wikipedia. I don't think it will go through though. There is too much opposition.
Something tells me it's here to stay. In one form or another, it will go through.
The intent is good, but the implementation clearly shows little understanding of the technology. Not surprising, since laws are written by lawyers and not technical people.This is roughly equivalent to stopping drive-by shootings by telling General Motors that they must stop people with guns from riding in cars.
I wish I could say I think it's misunderstanding. Instead, it's written just the way someone in particular wants it to be. There's a reoccurring theme here in the States of bills coming about in legislation that stomp the rights of citizens blatantly.I'm sure it won't be long before this thread is closed.

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Last year a UK court had already ordered btinternet.com (the UK's largest ISP) to block access to a site with links to pirated movies

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Kind of a thorny issue. As litigious as society has become, I really don't know how you're ever going to be able to safely operate such a site without some type of statutory indemnification. The problem is being artfull enough to generate the necessary legal framework.Some would suggest that any site that offers the ability for individuals to openly violate copyright statutes should be held accountable to at least some degree.Others would suggest that the responsible and therefore the accountable parties are limited to the individuals who are directly responsible for those violations.Even if the latter was true, does the web-site then have some responsibility to remove the offensive content? And, if so, how much responsibility. With the sites we are talking about I believe even that relatively modest amount of responsibility could prove to be devastating.I guess we will just have to wait and see.

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I'm sure it won't be long before this thread is closed.
What makes you say that?There are two pieces of legislation going through their courses at the moment. O'Bama has indicated that he will probably not sign them into law.

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What makes you say that?
The inevitable wrong turn these threads take!

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This is roughly equivalent to stopping drive-by shootings by telling General Motors that they must stop people with guns from riding in cars.
No it isn't. ISPs can stop access to pirate sites .

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No it isn't. ISPs can stop access to pirate sites .
But, Wikipedia is not an ISP, is it? The argument being made by Wikipedia and others is that the legislation might be interpreted as requiring them to insure that such sites can't be accessed through their own sites. This would require any web hosting company to follow every link on their sites, and any subsequent links on those sites and so on, to verify that it isn't eventually bringing the user to a pirate site.Governments a long time ago turned a blind eye to spammers and scammers. Here and particularly abroad, it got completely out of hand. Now, our government is trying ot put the responsibility for cleaning up this mess on the honest companies in the middle.

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But, Wikipedia is not an ISP, is it? The argument being made by Wikipedia and others is that the legislation might be interpreted as requiring them to insure that such sites can't be accessed through their own sites. This would require any web hosting company to follow every link on their sites, and any subsequent links on those sites and so on, to verify that it isn't eventually bringing the user to a pirate site.Governments a long time ago turned a blind eye to spammers and scammers. Here and particularly abroad, it got completely out of hand. Now, our government is trying ot put the responsibility for cleaning up this mess on the honest companies in the middle.
Then where's the problem? Wikipedia can provide links to pirate sites and the ISPs can block access. Site acces is via ISPs not Wikipedia - as you say it's not an ISP.

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Oh God, how am I going to do my homework tomorrow?!?!? :(

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If you want pirated stuff that is what mirrors and torrents are for.

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Oh God, how am I going to do my homework tomorrow?!?!? :(
lol
Obama won't sign the bill. I guess there is one thing he did good in 4 years.
...and lol again...

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Looks like they give you just enough time grab a screenshot of the page before it blacks out..

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Looks like they give you just enough time grab a screenshot of the page before it blacks out..
Googe's cache service lets you look at the blanked wiki page (so far).

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Then where's the problem? Wikipedia can provide links to pirate sites and the ISPs can block access. Site acces is via ISPs not Wikipedia - as you say it's not an ISP.
The problem is that the legislation is written so that the content-providers in the middle are the ones being held responsible. If the legislation said something like "We will give every ISP a machine readable list of sites to block every month" then the onus goes back to the government, and not too many people will be upset. Of course, that option essentially provides for government censorship, too, as they could easily interpret their own law to say that Wikileaks is a "pirate" site for publishing unauthorized information.

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The problem is that the legislation is written so that the content-providers in the middle are the ones being held responsible. If the legislation said something like "We will give every ISP a machine readable list of sites to block every month" then the onus goes back to the government, and not too many people will be upset. Of course, that option essentially provides for government censorship, too, as they could easily interpret their own law to say that Wikileaks is a "pirate" site for publishing unauthorized information.
This is correct. I personally think wikipedia is being a bit alarmist about this, but their point is still valid. Even if a website like wikipedia links to another website that has links to copyrightable material, then it could be shut down. I imagine that this would probably be an unlikely scenario, as there would be a huge public outcry at shutting down wikipedia. Still, that appears to be how the law is written.Keep in mind that this doesn't just cover "pirate" sites - there are many "normal" websites out there that infringe on copyrights. Sometimes this is by accident. Sometimes it is on purpose, but without nefarious intentions. Should Youtube be shut down? I'm pretty sure that there's copyright infringing material there. If I link to Youtube in this post, should Avsim then be shutdown? That is what SOPA "could" make happen, and that is why some people are upset.What about the Avsim library? I am here to tell you that there is copyright infringing material in the Avsim file library. I know this because it is my material which has been modified (or sometimes not) and re-uploaded by others, which was against my wishes. So, I guess Avsim could be shut down too, to protect my intellectual property. Truthfully, I personally don't care, so I wouldn't take action, but I could change my mind, I suppose. Also, I acknowledge that the library managers work very hard to ensure compliance with copyrights, and I am sure that if I complained they would remove the offending material. But this is the point - under SOPA, the onus will be upon the library managers to ensure copyright compliance, not upon me to complain about it. This seems like a heavy burden to place upon Avsims library managers (all volunteeers, I'm sure).Anyway, I'm not against copyright enforcement, but this legislation seems a bit too broad to be enforced.

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...........What about the Avsim library? I am here to tell you that there is copyright infringing material in the Avsim file library. I know this because it is my material which has been modified (or sometimes not) and re-uploaded by others, which was against my wishes. So, I guess Avsim could be shut down too, to protect my intellectual property. Truthfully, I personally don't care, so I wouldn't take action, but I could change my mind, I suppose. Also, I acknowledge that the library managers work very hard to ensure compliance with copyrights, and I am sure that if I complained they would remove the offending material. But this is the point - under SOPA, the onus will be upon the library managers to ensure copyright compliance, not upon me to complain about it. This seems like a heavy burden to place upon Avsims library managers (all volunteeers, I'm sure).Anyway, I'm not against copyright enforcement, but this legislation seems a bit too broad to be enforced.
Yes, we are all volunteers here.Feel free to send us an e-mail and let us know which files infringe your copyright, and we'll look into it.

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Even if a website like wikipedia links to another website that has links to copyrightable material, then it could be shut down.
Could it?
(B) INTERNET SEARCH ENGINES.—A provider of an Internet search engine shall take technically feasible and reasonable measures, as expeditiously as possible, but in any case within 5 days after being served with a copy of the order, or within such time as the court may order, designed to prevent the foreign infringing site that is subject to the order, or a portion of such site specified in the order, from being served as a direct hypertext link.
http://www.gpo.gov/f...112hr3261ih.pdf

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Yes.
Then can you direct me to the clauses(s) that actually state that?

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Then can you direct me to the clauses(s) that actually state that?
It's in the link you provided. You chose to quote a portion of one paragraph from a 78 page document. The quote you chose defines an internet search engine, which wikipedia, youtube and avsim are not. These are "Internet sites", and the legislation only mentions "links" not "direct links" in reference to these sites.

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