Tons Of Amendments Proposed For SOPA

from the sit-back-and-relax,-this-is-going-to-take-a-while dept

The "markup" process for SOPA is going to begin shortly (at 10am ET/7am PT), and it's going to be quite a circus. This is when various amendments can be proposed and debated. You can watch it stream live, if they can keep the stream up (they had trouble during the SOPA hearings). On top of that, I'm planning to live tweet as much as I can via my Twitter account -- assuming Twitter doesn't tell me I've "hit the limit of tweets for the day" (as it did during the hearings as well). I also have a few meetings here and there, so I'll have to disappear from time to time depending on how long the markup goes. But I still intend to cover as much as I can.

Normally, this process doesn't take a huge amount of time... but this time around there are a huge number of amendments, and reports are that it may take two days to get through everything. I've heard anywhere from 55 to 60 amendments are being proposed, each one of which needs to be discussed and voted on. We got our hands on an "amendments roster" (embedded below) that shows 55 amendments. It's possible that more have been added. However, there are plenty of interesting amendments already here -- and it suggests, at the very least, that some unexpected members of the Judiciary Committee retain serious concerns about SOPA, even after Lamar Smith's watered down version was released.

Here are just a few of the interesting amendments:
  • Zoe Lofgren has an amendment that says a DNS operator should have no obligation to block a website if doing so would impair the security or integrity of the domain name system or the operator's system or network. I'm sure opponents will say this makes the blocking toothless, but what they're really saying is they don't care if censoring websites they don't like harms the security of the internet.
  • Darrell Issa tries to completely dump the DNS blocking section, as well as the requirements for search engines to block links. This would be a huge step forward... which is why Smith will never let it happen.
  • Lofgren wants to make sure the anti-circumvention rule isn't able to be used to block tools used to get around foreign censorship. Considering our own State Department is funding such tools... this seems important. But it does lead to a bizarre situation where it could be legal to create circumvention tools for foreigners, but not for your own country. The whole circumvention stuff is ridiculous.
  • Lofgren also wants to make sure that those defined as "foreign infringing sites" actually violate copyright law, rather than "facilitate" infringement. Defenders of SOPA insist it's just about enforcement, not about broadening copyright law itself. But when you extend enforcement to things that don't directly break the law...
  • Jared Polis wants an amendment saying that the US government won't spend any money "protecting the intellectual property rights of pornography." Interesting.
  • Polis also wants to dump the anti-circumvention provisions entirely. Good for him. Anti-circumvention has been a disaster under the DMCA. Expanding it here would just be crazy.
  • Jim Sensenbrenner wants to do away with the private right of action entirely. Also a good idea. At least someone recognizes that this is a lawyer's dream tool. The private right of action will be massively abused. It wasn't clear where Sensenbrenner stood on the overall bill, but nice to see that he's clearly concerned with the likely abuse of section 103. He has another amendment that "replaces" the private right of action with the ability serve an order on payment providers and ad networks -- but limits the authority to enforce this to the Attorney General. I'm not sure this is that much better, but it'll be interesting to hear the details.
  • Lofgren tries to narrow the definition of what's "dedicated to theft of US property." This needs to be narrowed. While it's narrower than it was in the original, it's still way too broad.
  • Jason Chaffetz has an amendment that says if a company files an action based on Section 103 (trying to get ads or payment processors cut off) and the court disagrees... the company who files has to pay all fees of all the parties. Similarly, Ben Quayle, has an amendment that says anyone who knowingly misrepresents that a site is "dedicated to theft of us property," they'll be required to pay attorneys fees and court costs, and another amendment that just says that the losing party pays. Good to see more members worried about how the private right of action can be abused.
  • There are a bunch of amendments clarifying that ad networks, payment processors and search engines should only get immunity in very specific cases for voluntarily cutting off sites, rather than the broad immunity currently in the bill.
  • Chaffetz and Polis both have amendments concerning the "study" on the impact. Chaffetz, quite rightly, says that key parts of section 102's DNS blocking should not go into effect until after a study is done assessing the impact on internet security. Polis also wants a report on the impact of DNS blocking, as well as the impact on "employment, economic growth and the availability of capital."
  • Polis wants to add in DMCA-like safe harbors to the felony streaming provisions, and also make it so first time offenses remain a misdemeanor.
  • Hank Johnson includes one of my favorite clauses, and one I think should be on almost every bill: the provisions of the bill expire after five years. Why more bills don't have such provisions, I don't understand.
  • Polis takes on the issue of massively expanding the diplomatic corp. with diplomats whose sole job it is to push ever more draconian copyright law on foreign nations, by saying they should be required to "consider fair use, consumers and licensees as part of their duties." What? Consider consumers? When would Congress ever do that?
  • And, of course, Issa seeks to substitute his own OPEN bill. That would definitely be a big step forward towards getting rid of the problems of SOPA, but there's no way that amendment passes.
There are a bunch more, but those were just some of the interesting ones... We'll try to have a wrap up after it's all over. Chances are most of these amendments won't pass, but perhaps a few of them will at least get a reasonable hearing.


Reader Comments (rss)

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    Ima Fish (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 6:03am

    What's with the rush? Slow down, the internet will still be here to destroy next year. Unless, of course, they're quickly cramming the legislation through so no one has a chance to review it before it's passed.

    This wouldn't be the first time.

     

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      Sqube (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:33am

      Re:

      I think you've forgotten that we've only got 371 days until the end of the world. If they don't hurry up, they won't have time to properly appreciate the fruits of their labors.

       

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      Sqube (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:33am

      Re:

      I think you've forgotten that we've only got 371 days until the end of the world. If they don't hurry up, they won't have time to properly appreciate the fruits of their labors.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 6:03am

    No SOPA for me please I just want pizza.

     

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    Richard (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 6:07am

    Circumvention

    But it does lead to a bizarre situation where it could be legal to create circumvention tools for foreigners, but not for your own country. The whole circumvention stuff is ridiculous.

    If a foriegn country to use the same censorship mechanisms as the US then circumvention tools become magically legal again!

     

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      Hephaestus (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:31am

      Re: Circumvention

      Thanks, I didn't realize this until now. The US government wants people to create circumvention tools for foriegn oppressive governments. But if you do they can put you in jail.

       

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      Hephaestus (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:32am

      Re: Circumvention

      Thanks, I didn't realize this until now. The US government wants people to create circumvention tools to use against foreign oppressive governments. But if you do they can put you in jail.

       

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    Michael, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 6:13am

    If SOPA passes, our nation will have absolutely no grounds to promote freedom, let alone talk down on others for suppression and censorship. I wouldn't be surprised if many companies decided to leave the US in search of greener pastures as nobody wants to do business under the umbrella of corporate/government censorship immune to legal retaliation.

     

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      el_segfaulto (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 8:30am

      Re:

      I've been doing a bit of consulting (read: programming) for a small startup in L.A. We've been developing a site that will allow users to upload content to our servers (an NDA prevents me from spilling the details). If SOPA passes I'm going to have to outsource our hosting to an offsite server farm. I don't want to do this, but I can't risk out site being taken down because a video was uploaded with a Prince song playing in the background.

       

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    Isakill, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 6:15am

    Did you see this?

    Top news story on that .gov page has this to say:

    "Companies like Google have made billions by working with and promoting foreign rogue websites so they have a vested interest in preventing Congress from stopping rogue sites."

    Nice.. who is lying about what now?

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 6:40am

      Re: Did you see this?

      The worst part? It's at least partially true.

       

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        Karl (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:07am

        Re: Re: Did you see this?

        The worst part? It's at least partially true.

        The worst part? It's utter bullshit. Yet, a member of Congress is spreading this FUD as if it's fact.

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:11am

          Re: Re: Re: Did you see this?

          Why? Tons of questionable sites I see use the adwords / adsense combo to drive business and to extract money from them. Google makes 50% of each side. You don't think they are profiting from it?

           

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            The eejit (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:18am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Did you see this?

            Prove it with credible datasets.

            Oh, wait, the only datasets are from the USCoC, which is a lobbying group.

             

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            John Doe, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:45am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Did you see this?

            Do car companies profit from drunk drivers? Do the gas companies that sell them their gas? How about the bars and liquor manufacturers? Out of all those people involved, do you know who's fault it is? The drunk drivers.

             

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            Karl (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:47am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Did you see this?

            Why? Tons of questionable sites I see use the adwords / adsense combo to drive business and to extract money from them. Google makes 50% of each side.

            First: a "questionable" site is not even close to being a "rogue foreign website." The RIAA considers YouTube to be a "questionable" site, for example.

            Second: Google does not make "50% of each side." They take money only when users actually click on the ads, which nobody does.

            Third: Google voluntarily stops serving advertisements to sites that it considers rogue sites. That's why none of the pirate sites use them. The Pirate Bay, for example, does not use Google.

            Fourth: If you added up all of the ad money that changes hands through every single pirate website, across the globe, there's no way it would add up to "billions of dollars." People simply don't make very much money through online advertising. For-profit rogue sites make their money somewhere else, like by actually selling goods, or (in the case of sites like Ninjavideo) charging for premium membership.

            I'm sure some foreign rogue websites slip through the cracks. But the amount that Google makes from them wouldn't pay the salary of one of their janitors.

             

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              Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 8:57am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Did you see this?

              "First: a "questionable" site is not even close to being a "rogue foreign website." The RIAA considers YouTube to be a "questionable" site, for example."

              I used "questionable" to be polite. Google adwords is the easiest way to turn illegal activities into money, especially if you can play the "We don't host the content" bullshit. While Google is aggressive at killing some accounts, they are incredibly lax at times - the old "too big to police" issue.

              "Second: Google does not make "50% of each side." They take money only when users actually click on the ads, which nobody does."

              Remarkably, Google ads do get clicked, even on the worst of websites. Each click, Google gets 50% of the income. Now, if the pirate or illegal sites are also playing the game of click arbitrage (buying low cost general term clicks, and sending them through to pages with narrowly focused, expensive per click terms), Google would make 50% on sending the surfer, and 50% on the resulting expensive click.

              Many Google terms are priced in the dollars per click range, and smart site owners will target their sites to get those keywords and get those ads. A few clicks a day can make a site very profitable. Even if the click rate is low, if you can get enough eyeballs through on the basis of pirated material to attract them, you can make a good living.

              "Third: Google voluntarily stops serving advertisements to sites that it considers rogue sites. That's why none of the pirate sites use them. The Pirate Bay, for example, does not use Google."

              This is true. Google has been good at dealing with removing torrent sites, mostly when they are notified (via DMCA) of issues with a site. However, many of the advertisers on these sites are doing click arbitrage using Google, so indirectly, they are still making money off of it.

              "Fourth: If you added up all of the ad money that changes hands through every single pirate website, across the globe, there's no way it would add up to "billions of dollars.""

              This is just not true. TPB alone was (a couple of years back) charging $50k a month for ad space, with multiple spaces available (I know, because someone I know with was buying space for their company for a while). That is a single site. Many of them are selling "premium" downloads, or selling that right off to third party companies. It's not hard to picture a billion plus worldwide. Heck, Megaupload does 50 million users a day. You don't think that Fat Kim is making a few dollars?

              "I'm sure some foreign rogue websites slip through the cracks. But the amount that Google makes from them wouldn't pay the salary of one of their janitors."

              Since Google is the default company for selling ad space for most people, and because they are often the targets of the click arbitrage and "washing" of traffic, they actually do make a fair bit of money directly or indirectly from rogue sites. Even if you accept it as 1% of their business (which would be really small) you are still looking at 10 million a year. That is a very well paid janitor!

               

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            Richard (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:50am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Did you see this?

            Why? Tons of questionable sites I see use the adwords / adsense combo to drive business and to extract money from them. Google makes 50% of each side. You don't think they are profiting from it?

            Yes - but the money comes from legit businesses that palce advertsing via Google. If the "rogue sites" did not exist then Google would simply place the ads elsewhere and get roughly the same revenue. If anyone is getting advantage from the "rogue sites" it is the companies that advertise with Google rather than Google itself. Are you accusing those companies - or do you just have an irrational hatred of Google (based on jealousy).

             

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            crade (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 8:10am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Did you see this?

            Yeah, yeah, google's terrible, shut them down or try to control them (since they obviously don't know how to drive their own business) and do the same to everyone else accomplishing anything useful and also everything that is helping people be more productive.

             

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            Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 8:41am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Did you see this?

            This coming from a-holes who exploit the work of others to make money.

            ASCAP, BMI all extract money from people who do the work to give it to a minority who did nothing to deserve the money, the same goes for publishing and movies.

             

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              Michael, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 8:51am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Did you see this?

              "ASCAP, BMI all extract money from people who do the work to give it to a minority who did nothing to deserve the money, the same goes for publishing and movies."

              Yup, they leave the artists in debt while the label reaps the rewards. It's a blatant scam which should be outlawed. If anyone needs to be regulated, it's definitely the major corporations.

               

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    John Doe, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 6:22am

    The part about who pays fees is not broad enough

    Instead of just paying attorney fees, there should be large punitive damages awarded to sites who are falsely accused. After all, having their revenue stream cutoff, even for a short period, may put them out of business completely. Getting attorney fees back after losing your entire business is not much of a reward.

     

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    Michael, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 6:26am

    Re: Did you see this?

    It's called spreading misinformation to promote one side of the argument.

     

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    MAJikMARCer (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 6:27am

    Reevalutate

    the provisions of the bill expire after five years.

    This would be a great idea for this bill (likely many others too). We all know how fast things change on the Internet. Many of these provisions would likely NEED to be reevaluated after 5 years. Would these rules still be needed at all? Would technology have rendered some of these issues moot?

    Forcing it to be looked at again in five years might respark debate, but it SHOULD. Many laws need to be debated and adjusted accordingly, especially when they affect something as nebulous and quickly changing as the Internet.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 6:30am

    In a house of 500 members, or 4 total are trying put a stick in the spokes of progress.

    The amendments proposed are of the type of leave the law on the books, but to remove any potential for enforcement, or to create such broad exceptions that everyone can avoid it.

    Stupid politicians.

     

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      Loki, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:13am

      Re:

      A bill written so broadly as to be open by massive abuse by pretty much everyone, with provisions to make such abuses relatively meaningless in most cases, thus giving Congress the ability to go to both side and claim they actually did something.

      Sounds like a politicians wet dream.

       

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      Mike Masnick (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:44am

      Re:

      In a house of 500 members, or 4 total are trying put a stick in the spokes of progress.


      This is just the judiciary committee. So, a lot more than 4/500. And there aren't 500 members of the house anyway.

      Way to mislead and pretend opposition is less than you'd like to believe. Significant concerns by many members of the committee

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 8:40am

        Re: Re:

        Mike:

        "The 111th United States Congress, in session from 2009–2010, consisted of 541 elected officials from 50 states, five territories, and the District of Columbia. It is the federal legislature of the United States of America, continuing an unbroken chain dating back to the 1st Congress in 1789.
        The Senate has 100 members; the House of Representatives has 435 members and six non-voting delegates."

        Sorry if I didn't get the split exactly right. Not like you to be fussy ass for a small number. Plus, it's a nice way of deflecting away from the fact that it's only a very few members who are trying everything under the sun to add amendments that would make the law toothless.

        Nice play!

         

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          MAJikMARCer (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 8:54am

          Re: Re: Re:

          More like 39 in the judiciary committee, while 4/39 is still not a huge number, that's just the ones who suggested amendments. The may be more that are opposed who simply haven't publicly made that statement yet. I'm betting by days end we'll have a clearer picture of the pro/against ratio.

           

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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 6:41am

    Should be interesting. prediction, bill will pass watered down, be a legal nightmare, be shite and not work, new bill proposed saying that DMCA was weak, SOPA was reasonable and that stronger measures are needed. Repeat until a bill is proposed that corps must be profitable by law.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 6:55am

    Jim Sensenbrenner wants to do away with the private right of action entirely. Also a good idea. At least someone recognizes that this is a lawyer's dream tool. The private right of action will be massively abused. It wasn't clear where Sensenbrenner stood on the overall bill, but nice to see that he's clearly concerned with the likely abuse of section 103. He has another amendment that "replaces" the private right of action with the ability serve an order on payment providers and ad networks -- but limits the authority to enforce this to the Attorney General. I'm not sure this is that much better, but it'll be interesting to hear the details.

    Hypocrite much Masnick? The OPEN Act contains only a private right of action. I guess private right of action is only OK with you in a bill that is toothless.

     

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      E. Zachary Knight (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:07am

      Re:

      The OPEN act contains the right for private entities to bring their case before the ITC to prove harm and that a site is actually infringing. That is a far cry better than SOPA's private right of action.

       

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      Mike Masnick (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:46am

      Re:

      Hypocrite much Masnick? The OPEN Act contains only a private right of action. I guess private right of action is only OK with you in a bill that is toothless.

      I've discussed the problems with OPEN elsewhere. Why must you pretend I support it.

      What I do support is it's much narrower definitions that actually focus on worst of worst. But I guess you have to smear me because you have no facts on your side.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 6:59am

    Hank Johnson includes one of my favorite clauses, and one I think should be on almost every bill: the provisions of the bill expire after five years. Why more bills don't have such provisions, I don't understand.


    It figures you'd have an affinity for the stupidest human being on earth:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zNZczIgVXjg

     

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      MAJikMARCer (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:03am

      Re:

      And you have simply resorted to an ad hominem attack rather than addressing anything of substance in the article.

       

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        TtfnJohn (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:51am

        Re: Re:

        Substance? Our friendly AC doesn't deal with substance. Ad hominem is easier and faster to dash off. I'm just surprised it took as long as it did for this story.


        Nothing's happened yet, though. Let's see what is left when this is all over and the debates and votes are done. At the very least it ought to be interesting.

         

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      oh burn, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:04am

      Re:

      that was awesome man. no really you TOOK HIM DOWN.

       

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      The eejit (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:21am

      Re:

      I thought that was you. Well, until I saw the book promoting anti-vaccination propaganda.

       

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        Michael, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:35am

        Re: Re:

        Not sure I follow.

         

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          The eejit (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 8:02am

          Re: Re: Re:

          The book is called "Melanie's Marvelous Measles", and IMO, it's thestupidest thing I've seen today. And I saw it after I replied to the above post. So until then, the above post was the stupidest thing I saw today.

           

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            Michael, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 8:13am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            I would've agreed until I saw that Lamar Smith memo based on BASCAP "research" that Mike just refuted. This goes beyond merely being stupid and moves into the realm of intentional ignorance. Anything for an extra buck, I suppose, even if that means potentially destroying the integrity of the internet and compromising an entire economic sector.

             

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      Mike Masnick (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:48am

      Re:

      It figures you'd have an affinity for the stupidest human being on earth:


      It figures that rather than actually discuss the issues, you'd throw out a random ad hom.

      Is that really productive? I guess in your world, insults work when you don't have reality on your side. How sad.

       

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        crade (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 8:14am

        Re: Re:

        Get with the times. Discussing issues is nearly extinct. Ad Hom is the future!

         

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          MAJikMARCer (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 8:22am

          Re: Re: Re:

          I've noticed that true debate doesn't really exist here. Either your post is completely ignored or attacked with ad hom or bogus 'facts' that have beeb debunked over and over again.

           

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        Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 8:41am

        Re: Re:

        "It figures that rather than actually discuss the issues, you'd throw out a random ad hom."

        this from the guy who made smear posts of each of the Bill's writers. Got it!

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 9:03am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Did you really just go with a version of "you started it"?

          Also, you technically did ignore the issues and just throw out an insult. Notice that he didn't smear each of the bill's writers. What he did was point out the hypocrisy of what they were doing (based on their own previous words and stances) and then pointed out the flaws in the bills and backed it up with evidence from much more reputable and legitimate (not to mention, unbiased) sources.

          It's only bad when Mike and Google and others do it. When it's you, the studios/labels, etc it's perfectly okay. Got it. "Do as we say, not as we do. otherwise you're not playing fair, you big ol' meanie." This seems to be such a popular stance as of late. I find it hilarious that I do not actually hear children say that anymore, but adults do it on a regular basis. Kinda scary in a way too.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 11:08am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            ", you technically did ignore the issues and just throw out an insult."

            It wasn't my post to start with. Further, Mike is the lucky guy who was smears the bill's authors a couple of weeks back already. He doesn't have a whole lot of moral high ground to stand on here.

            "It's only bad when Mike and Google and others do it. When it's you, the studios/labels, etc it's perfectly okay. Got it. "

            It's not good when either side of the debate does it. But those who claim the moral high ground shouldn't be there to start with, but if you look closely, you can see Mike covered in the muck he has been shovelling for the last couple of months. It's not pretty, it's just harder for people like you to see because you agree with him.

             

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              identicon
              Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 8:07pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Pointing out the idiocy on the bill is not a smear.

               

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              Mike Masnick (profile), Dec 16th, 2011 @ 12:00am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              It wasn't my post to start with. Further, Mike is the lucky guy who was smears the bill's authors a couple of weeks back already. He doesn't have a whole lot of moral high ground to stand on here.

              You keep claiming I smeared the bill's authors, but you can't back that up because it's false. Pointing out *facts* and examples of hypocrisy is not a "smear" no matter how many times you pretend otherwise.

              Is that really the best you've got?

               

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      Loki, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:55am

      Re:

      Unfortunately, that doesn't even come close to breaking the top ten of stupid commentary/statements I've heard uttered by a politician.

       

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    Karl (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:03am

    Capuano

    For what it's worth: I just called the offices of my representative, Michael Capuano, to voice my opposition to the bill. His aide said that he will be voting against the bill.

     

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    Michael, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:20am

    Yeah, may as well be, eejit.

     

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    Karl (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:24am

    Missed one thing

    Polis also wants to use this bill to expand copyright law to sound recordings recorded before 1972.

    In other words, he's trying to sneak in a retroactive extension to copyright, but only for sound recordings.

    Whether or not you think this might be a good idea (and it actually might be, in this rare case), it's a stupid idea to try to paste it onto this horrible bill.

     

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      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:35am

      Re: Missed one thing

      Sounds like he's trying really hard to vote himself out of a job. Boulder is a constituency that pays close attention to the voting record of its representatives.

       

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      E. Zachary Knight (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:38am

      Re: Missed one thing

      Sounds more like he is trying to pull all sound recording copyrights under the Federal umbrella. Sound recording from prior to 1972 are governed by individual state copyright laws. Not Federal. Bringing them under Federal copyright law would actually make them more reasonable in some cases.

       

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        Michael, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:42am

        Re: Re: Missed one thing

        E. Zachary, please expound upon this subject. Anything which strengthens the major label's copyright powers should be frowned upon. How would this be beneficial to anyone except for the major labels?

         

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          Karl (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:55am

          Re: Re: Re: Missed one thing

          E. Zachary, please expound upon this subject. Anything which strengthens the major label's copyright powers should be frowned upon.

          I'm not E. Zachary, but I'll answer this one.

          Currently, pre-1972 sound recordings are covered by a patchwork of state laws: anti-bootleg laws, right of publicity laws, even criminal statutes. Needless to say, most don't include limitations like fair use, and they all cover different types of activities, and last for different periods of time.

          By putting them all under the umbrella of federal copyright law, it would actually make things a lot simpler, and ironically, some music would actually enter the public domain sooner in some states.

          That's why librarians and archivists are actually for putting these sound recordings under Federal copyright law. The major labels, on the other hand, are against it.

          Like I said, it's a rare case.

           

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          Richard (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:57am

          Re: Re: Re: Missed one thing

          The state copyright laws have some crazy provisions that keep (for example) music that was first fixed as a recording (as opposed to a musical score) in copyright much longer than would be thae case if it was written down. Putting sound recordings onto the same footing as the rest of copyright (life +70 or 95 for a wfh) would actually bring a load of stuff into the public domain in the US.

           

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            Richard (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:59am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Missed one thing

            If the amendment got adopted that might put the RIAA into an awkward place with respect to the bill as a whole.

             

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              Rikuo (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 12:12pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Missed one thing

              Nah, hopefully someone will just paperclip this into the bill in the dead of night. The RIAA won't have a leg to stand on once they find out, after all, they did it.

               

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            Michael, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 8:00am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Missed one thing

            Thanks for the clarification. Much appreciated. Just making sure that it wasn't yet another means of the major labels strengthening their grip on the artists' works.

             

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        Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:47am

        Re: Re: Missed one thing

        I can see pros and cons to that idea. I think I'd lean towards being in favor of that one (just not attached to this cluster bomb of a bill).

         

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:41am

    As a democrat I usually hate Issa, but on SOPA I can't help but love his proposed amendments better then the others listed.

     

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    Michael, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 7:55am

    Holy cow

    That female clerk sure does love to read, doesn't she?

     

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    AJ (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 8:02am

    This is going to turn into a fail pile unlike anything the world has witnessed before. Millions of man hours, thousands of posts and blogs, hundreds of news paper stories, and countless jobs heading overseas later.... they may finally realize that they were routed around even before they were done wasting money. But were not done yet... lets tie it up in the courts for years and years, even after it's become obsolete... what a waste.

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 9:15am

    Wake me up when we have a revolution.
    I am more than disgusted at Washington.
    GO TO HELL !!! You corrupt buttheads deserve it.

     

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    identicon
    Pips, Dec 15th, 2011 @ 9:28am

    Bad news, Good news

    Bad news is the Internet is about to simply give up the ghost from over regulation.

    Good news a new Internet devoid of regulations will be built in its place and will probably last a few years before the lobbyists get their claws into regulating it to death again.

    Repeat.

     

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    Violated (profile), Dec 15th, 2011 @ 10:30am

    The only amendment I see to strongly disagree with is the one that would exclude pornographers. No matter how we dislike a certain group then all people should be treated equal under the law.

    So if the pornographers are doing something wrong then clearly some other law needs adjusting to prevent abuse by all groups including pornographers.

     

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