The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) Essay

The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) Essay

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In the recent years, there has been a growing conflict between American copyright holders and website owners, both domestic and foreign, over intellectual property theft. Indeed, these copyright holders have repeatedly made attempts to block websites from committing or facilitating online piracy, while websites claim that laws that try to limit the content within websites are encouraging censorship. With the internet as an international user-controlled domain, it has been a long struggle for both sides of the conflict.
On October 26, 2011, a new piece of legislation, the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), had been introduced to the United States House of Representatives and is intended to help law enforcement agencies and copyright holders combat intellectual property theft on the Internet. However, the bill contains a few technicalities that will affect both the constitution and American culture. Because SOPA will violate the constitution and negatively impact American culture, the bill should not be passed.
Essentially the purpose of SOPA is to reduce intellectual property theft over the Internet, which is also known as online piracy. In addition, another bill has also been introduced in the senate, Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act of 2011 (PROTECT IP act), and is also intended for the same purpose as SOPA. In particularly, SOPA would target foreign U.S. directed sites, or an internet site that is used to “provide goods or services to users located in the United States” that commit copyright infringement (H.R. 3261, 8-9). In addition, SOPA would give the Department of Justice (DOJ) the authority to seek out court orders “constituting specified intellectual property offe...


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Poritz, Jonathan A. "Who Searches The Searchers? Community Privacy In The Age Of Monolithic Search Engines." Information Society 23.5 (2007): 383-389. Academic Search Premier. Web. 13 Dec. 2011.
Rodman, George R. Mass Media in a Changing World ; History, Industry, Controversy. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill, 2012. Print.
“Targeting Websites Dedicated To Stealing American Intellectual Property”, Senate Committee on the Judiciary Cong. (2011) (testimony of Daniel Castro). Print.
Tribe, Laurence H. "THE "STOP ONLINE PIRACY ACT" (SOPA) VIOLATES THE
FIRST AMENDMENT." Net-coalition.com. Web. 5 Dec. 2011. .
United States. Cong. House. Stop Online Piracy Act. 112th Cong., 1st sess. H. R. 3261. Washington: GPO, 2011. Print.

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