Michele Bachmann Comes Out Against PROTECT IP

from the interesting-developments dept

Whatever you might think of Rep. Michele Bachmann, she certainly gets attention, and as a bunch of folks have just sent over, she’s just come out against PROTECT IP. In a letter responding to someone asking her opinion, she stated:

Thank you for taking the time to contact me with your opposition to S. 968, the Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property (PROTECT IP) Act. As your Representative for the 6th district of Minnesota, your views are very important to me and I appreciate hearing from you.

While I understand the importance of safeguarding Americans’ intellectual property rights, I have serious concerns about government getting involved in regulation of the internet, and about ambiguities in this legislation which could lead to an explosion of destructive, innovation-stalling lawsuits.

This is likely as a result of recent Tea Party concerns about the bill as well, since Bachmann is often associated with the Tea Party.

The interesting bit here is that it certainly sets things up for some more vocal opposition of PROTECT IP. Supporters of the bill had been arguing that it would just be “the usual suspects” who were against PROTECT IP, and would talk about how they had bipartisan support for the bill. But we’re seeing more and more people in the House begin to express concerns about the bill… and do so on both sides of the aisle. Intellectual property issues, for better of for worse (and I think, for better) have never been a really partisan issue, and I do hope it stays that way, but Bachmann’s opposition puts up another roadblock in place to getting PROTECT IP passed. We’d heard that the House version of the bill was supposed to drop today… (after a couple months of being told “in the next two weeks”), but then late yesterday heard that it was pushed back again. It wouldn’t be surprising to find out that Bachmann taking a position on it is part of the delay. At the very least, this is going to mean that PROTECT IP won’t be able to sail through as supporters expected, and (most importantly) there is likely to be a lot more public scrutiny of a bill that is nothing but a favor to the MPAA/RIAA.

In the end it’s good news that people elected officials are increasingly realizing that IP issues aren’t as simple as has been put forth by the entertainment industry for so long. The fact that entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, and top technologists have already vocally expressed their concerns about PROTECT IP hindering innovation, it’s nice to see that these voices are starting to be heard. Maybe, just once, the entertainment industry won’t get away with a bill to prop up their failing business models without everyone else just letting it happen.

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Comments on “Michele Bachmann Comes Out Against PROTECT IP”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 This proves that...

You’re sorta right, but it doesn’t really matter

The expression is actually about a stopped clock being right twice a day.
Stopped is what was meant here by broken
What you’re describing in your 2nd example is a clock keeping perfect time but where the time is set wrong, the clock isn’t broken there, but a broken clock might not have the ability to show time at all and therefore wouldn’t even be right twice a day.
You’re first example was better so you’re not completely wrong, but you are pedantic as hell.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 This proves that...

“you are pedantic as hell”

Wow, look who’s talking! All he was doing was point out that, just as there’s a situation where a broken clock can be right, there’s a situation where a working clock is never right. Meaning that there’s a simple opposing counterpoint to that common saying.

Not hard to understand, but as usual an AC has to jump to conclusions and launch personal insults…

Anonymous Coward says:

PROTECT IP like the DMCA has a complete lack of transparency and accountability, there is no way to challenge the classification of “rogue sites”, there is no obligation to make that list public so people can see what is being blocked, there is no tough penalties for abuses committed.

PROTECT IP is a censor tool, one that should have even more safeguards because of its potential for infringing on the First Amendment and still there is not a shred of that in that bill.

Not to mention it is useless since others can just create forums that cannot be blocked by any government on earth, the technology is not there, the means are not there, why risk so powerful collateral damages to democracy?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Help!

Have you watched her in the debates? She has no clue what she’s talking about, she merely says anything that she thinks will get her elected.




If she gets elected, gosh help us all.

I suspect she doesn’t really even care about half of what she talks about, especially given her ignorance. She is just saying anything she can to get elected and slamming anyone else to the fullest extent that she can.

Karl (profile) says:


Ah, that might explain why I also got a response email from Scott Brown… despite emailing him about ACTA months ago.

I guess this means that Bachmann is also one of “Google’s pet senators.” Obviously, she’s just a hippie freetard who is spouting Socialist propaganda about how nobody deserves to get paid.

Having said all that: I know “the enemy of your enemy,” and all that – but still: yikes. With friends like these…

surfer (profile) says:

Re: Re:

um, this IS an open forum, like the old town hall meetings.

there can be derp arguments over stopped/broken clocks on one side of the room, while debates over Bachmann being Palin in the center, et al..

although, typically, the intellects converge in one corner or another, usually by the free coffee, to discuss the ramifications of infringing on the 1st Amendment with no oversight, something we have seen before.

just saying..

Karl (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Oh boy, you guys are in great company.

Wow, talk about the pot calling the kettle black… Bachmann may be horrible, but the RIAA/MPAA/COC aren’t any better.

It’s also somewhat ironic, since your side has been lobbing the “hippie”/”socialist” accusation against the free culture movement for years.

It pisses you off that PROTECT IP opponents aren’t so easily pigeonholed, huh?

Mark Th (profile) says:

Protect IP

It seems to me that this is not the most well considered piece of legislation. It clearly has what could charitably be considered dual use.

i.e.; While we might be thinking of some link-bucket aggregator site in some legislatively intractable country today, it could easily be interpreted by political opportunists against any site. I.e.; Accusing Matt Drudge of the eponymomous site, or Justin Raimando of AntiWar.com or Markos Z?niga of DailyKos to shutdown because they aggregate or provide content some original content provider might object to, such as a police beating or military protest,some utterance of corporate malfeasance or political gaffe.

So while there is a serious problem around content aggregator sites, the web is an inherently public forum and designed around the notion of sharing information.

If there is high-value information, it is presumed to be in the public fora OR behind some password/ssl protection at the least.

So much as it pains me, I find myself on the same side of an argument as Michelle Bachman although I do hope my rationale for arriving at my viewpoint is more sound than hers.

I would MUCH rather have myself on the side of having the right to show whatever I want, and have a complaint filed under existing mechanisms; because at the end of the day, if an author or private holder asked me to remove something, I almost certainly would, unless it was clearly some ideologically non-negotiable point. However this does not consider the person who operates exclusively from a malfeasant perspective.

It seems to my mind that the greater harm is done to the well meaning person who may constitute an objector to some ideological item, than harm or constraint imposed upon the malfeasant person who simply can effort in another direction.

Anonymous Coward says:

This is ironic as hell, as her good friend and ally Bradlee Dean (Smith), in his ongoing efforts to stop people from using his own words to describe him, has gone from attempting to sue for pseudo-slander (the “false light” nonsense) to abusing copyright law in order to keep the general public from hearing what he tells his followers:



rxrightsadvocate (profile) says:

PROTECT IP flaw jeopardizes affordable meds

This article illustrates again that many groups from ?both sides of the aisle? are expressing their opposition to this bill. RxRights is also concerned ?about ambiguities in this legislation.? Specifically, PROTECT IP could cut off Americans? online access to safe, affordable prescription drugs from legitimate international pharmacies.

There is a major flaw in the PROTECT IP Act?s definition of what constitutes a ?rogue? website. In terms of online pharmacies, it fails to distinguish between the ?good guys?–the licensed, legitimate pharmacies that require a doctor?s prescription–and the ?bad guys? who sell everything from diluted or fake medicine to narcotics without a prescription.

RxRights is dedicated to promoting and protecting American consumer access to sources of safe, affordable prescription drugs. We are asking Americans to contact their legislators to urge them to oppose PROTECT IP due to its threat to our access to affordable medicine. Find out more at http://www.RxRights.org.

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