You must have heard something like SOPA in the recent days. What is SOPA? How does it affect anyone using the internet? Well, SOPA stands for STOP ONLINE PIRACY ACT. It is a bill introduced by the US Congress to censor the internet and avoid online trafficking. There was a large speculation over stopping SOPA as it takes away the online freedom from the internet users.
This bill also hinders building any new businesses online. Basically this bill has been designed to stop online piracy. Let’s take a look at an example:
SOPA proposes to stop complete access to a website which has pirated content. It also stops payment gateways like Paypal to carry out any transaction for such sites. At one look this might appear to be a good move. But it is not correct to shut down the whole business or website just because of the mistake of any one person.
This bill has enough power to shut down biggies like YOUTUBE. But it is incorrect to shut down such a big network just because one person uploaded some copyright video without permission. Hence this bill was strongly opposed and Jan 18th was considered as INTERNET BLACKOUT .
On Jan 18th , from 8am-8pm , webmasters and website owners shut down their websites as a protest to SOPA and PIPA ( Protect IP Act) . This protest was joined by major websites like Wikipedia , Google , Facebook and millions of more websites. Millions of signatures, emails and applications were signed all over the globe in a protest to SOPA. The result came out good and the bill was put off indefinitely by the US Congress.