Cable News Finally Realizing That SOPA And PROTECT IP Are Bad News

from the here-it-comes... dept

Well, well, well. We’ve noted in the past that while the serious concerns about SOPA and PROTECT IP (PIPA) have been all over the web and newspapers, they’ve mostly been mostly been absent from cable news… companies that are owned by the biggest supporters of these bills (the one “exception” was Colbert). But can cable news really continue to ignore the story while so many people are speaking out about it? Looks like the tide may be shifting. On Friday, Fox Business Channel had on Jim Harper from the Cato Institute to explain why these are terrible ideas and how Congress is trying to rush it through despite so many concerns:

Similarly, it sounds like MSNBC is planning something as well. Will Congress really still be able to pretend that people don’t care about these bills?

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Comments on “Cable News Finally Realizing That SOPA And PROTECT IP Are Bad News”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Maybe some of the controversy about a Mega Upload story getting Tech News Today- 391 removed from You Tube may have actual hit journalists ears. You can’t cover news in a timely way with a take down notice burying the story for ten days. Even a Judge saw that as troubling.

SOPA/PIPA could get your network disappeared from the US internet.

FM Hilton (profile) says:

It's about their paychecks

I was wondering just the other day why there was no mention of either of those items in any news-like there was a news blackout in progress.
But it’s really understandable: MSNBC is partly owned by NBC Universal, which is an entertainment company. Undoubtedly part of the cabal to make sure the bills pass.

Now to get the NY Times to really investigate them. That’s the last holdout. I’ve not seen much reporting from them on it, and I wonder why-probably the same reasons. They don’t want to upset their corporate masters who wish that this furor over the most regressive and retarded legislation of a lifetime would just get passed without any fuss.

gorehound (profile) says:

The people of this Country are really going to be angry when the whole story of this comes out.
Conservatives who believe in the Union and the Constitution I am sure will be pissed.
Liberals will be pissed.
Middle of the Roaders will see the dangers

2012 should be pretty interesting.Could be and I hope will be a huge March on Washington finally.
Those who are in favor of these Bills will and should be labeled as “Benedict Arnolds”.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

“The people of this Country are really going to be angry when the whole story of this comes out.”

No they are not. It’s hard to garner sympathy for pirates, counterfeiters, and the like. When your starting position is “we break the law, but it’s silly”, you don’t get much sympathy.

Dylan Ratigan will very likely take the issue up to show rich companies like google as the “greedy bastards” he writes about. That will pretty much end the issue right there.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

And the like? I mean, I understand why serial counterfeiters peddling bad medicine for profit is bad. I understand that casual copyright infringement is even worse but what’s with “. . . and the like”?

Do you mean there is something worse than copyright infringement that this bill targets, and what is it?

A Guy (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Casual copyright infringement is worse than medicine that doesn’t work? You have some really fucked up values.

Anyway, the issue with the legislation is that it’s a job killer, it gives broad censorship powers to private corporations, and if its circumvention measures are implemented it will weaken our national infrastructure, leave us more open to personal, corporate, and governmental security breaches.

Gwiz (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

When your starting position is “we break the law, but it’s silly”, you don’t get much sympathy.

When your starting position is “we need to piss all over the Constitution, privacy and security in order to control this new thing we don’t understand just because some industry claims it’s losing money”, it’s downright fucking scary.

Jason (profile) says:

Re: Re: No sympathy

If this go into effect there will be no sympathy show from “the masses” when goes away.

Of course, everyone always says youtube won’t be affected. It’ll just be smaller sites and worse sites. Youtube is too big. But the law doesn’t talk about how big the site is.

And anyway, if youtube will get different treatment, then we will need to really begin a discussion about whatever happened to equal treatment under the law…..

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

“It’s hard to garner sympathy for pirates”

It’s hard to garner sympathy for bought politicians that pass rogue anti-competitive laws. It’s hard to garner sympathy for those lobbying for and abusing those laws.

I have no disdain for digital ‘pirates’ who merely copy information. Sure, I have no sympathy for them, I’m just mostly apathetic. While I myself try to follow the law and I don’t generally infringe on content (at least I try not to intentionally break the law), I don’t hold anyone else to a standard that requires them to follow rogue laws. If copy protection laws were more reasonable then I might be less sympathetic towards those who infringe.

However, I do advocate IP abolition, or at least for the laws to be substantially repealed so that we can have a more reasonable set of laws.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

“It’s hard to garner sympathy for pirates, counterfeiters, and the like.”

So? That’s not who the sympathy would be for. It’s pretty easy to garner sympathy for the citizens in general.

“When your starting position is “we break the law, but it’s silly”, you don’t get much sympathy.”

That’s not anyone’s starting position, so this is also irrelevant.

But you knew that already.

LLC guru (profile) says:


“how Congress is trying to rush it through despite so many concerns”
SOPA And PROTECT IP are the type of legislation that it is difficult to mobilize sufficient numbers of concerned citizens to blunt the influence of corporate lobbying money in congress. These issues take a bit of educating for one to understand the public harm and, unfortunately, the mainstream are not very well educated on the issues of the day. Further, they are not interested in spending the energy to educate themselves. The entertainment industry disguise their greedy power grab in other public purposes that appear to be good unless one digs. We need go no further than the name “PROTECT IP” to make this point. I’m not hopeful either of these bills will be stopped nor that the elected officials responsible for these abominations will pay for their sins.

Michael says:


Now more than ever, the concept behind “personal computing” is under threat. The mega corps are pushing to do away with physical storage devices in favor of internet-reliant data storage such as cloud computing. I don’t need to expound upon why this is a bad idea. Furthermore, the open dev environment pioneered from the internet’s inception is becoming a thing of the past, what with corporate brands like Apple filtering every app for use with their products, and companies like Microsoft persistently reminding us all that the software we purchased doesn’t [I]really[/I] belong to us. Intellectual property rights have superceded the individual’s, it seems.

The dark ages of the PC/internet is dawning upon us. The draconian legislation that is SOPA/PIPA will give birth to an Orwellian internet. We’re all going to look back at the internet’s golden years as a bastion for freedom of speech, innovation and entertainment …before the government and corporations took over.

Anonymous Coward says:

Terrible and downright misleading “interview” that makes it only to clear the Judge on FOX did not understand what he was talking about, and the individual from CATO went along without correcting him on his glaring wrong misstatement.

Note that the Judge talks about the AG being able to proceed without the involvent of the judiciary. This is untrue, and the Judge should have known better. I do not fault the individual from CATO because he merely went down the path that the Judge set up by not knowing what the legislation actually provides.

Whether or not one agrees with the proposed legislation, at the very least a Judge talking about it should be expected to know what he is talking about. Apparently, he decided to adopt the Nancy Grace approach and mislead the audience out of his own ignorance.

Hopefully, whoever presents the matter at MSNBC actually reads it before waxing poetic.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

There is no such thing as a “magistrate court”. Magistrates, to the extend one may be involved in suits of this type, sit as members of a Federal District Court, are well familiar with the rules of federal rules of civil and criminal procedure, and oftentimes handle some aspects of the preliminary stages of a pending lawsuit.

kirillian (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

He didn’t change the subject. He merely asked you to back up your statement. He was stating that you are no better than others who have posted here, completely misstating facts, if you can’t do so. While he kinda jumped quickly to this conclusion, I can’t blame him either. There has been a LOT of activity recently from Anonymous Cowards trying to spam these threads with propaganda and no citations to back up their statements. Put up or shut up is the community attitude right now. Links are important. We go through the work to cite sources by putting links in our comments. If you want us to give you the respect you want. You can do so too. Link us a source. Sometimes a reliable source takes a bit of time to find because they are behind paywalls etc. Linking a source that is NOT behind a paywall is very much appreciated.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

I believe you are the same “Jay” who provides comments on a couple of legal blogs. Even there, when you are challenged and detailed explanations, cases, and statutes provided, you continue to insist that they are wrong and you are right.

You are perfectly entitled to your opinion and I would never deny you that opportunity, but at least you should take the time to assimilate what others may have say on the subject.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

At 27 I cited Section 102 of the current bill. That bill can be found at:

I presume this is responsive to your request.

The eejit (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

Technically, there is no mention of it in the In Personam section. In Rem explicitly states that a Court Order is required to satisfy that the AG has done everything possible to find the webmaster for the cdomain.

However, in 102 (c), it mentions that safe harbors only apply if you remove the DNS record immediately upon being served by the AG, NOT a judge.

Nopte that failing to comply due to technical means being insufficient does not constitute a complete defense, but may be a mitigating factor.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Re:

1. The bill was linked so that you could read Section 102, the one pertinent to the comment I made about the FOX broadcast.

2. If you take the time to even casually look at Section 102 you will quickly note that the AG must go through the court system. The broadcast stated otherwise, which made what was stated manifestly wrong.

Jay (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:5 Re:

Wow, because a one sided hearing that the defendant doesn’t know anything about is really going through the court system.

(2) IN REM- If through due diligence the Attorney General is unable to find a person described in subparagraphs (A) or (B) of paragraph (1), or no such person found has an address within a judicial district of the United States, the Attorney General may commence an in rem action against a nondomestic domain name used by an Internet site dedicated to infringing activities.

So if they can’t find someone they follow Rule 65 for an injunction. What’s amazing is how one sided the rule is:

(1) Issuing Without Notice. The court may issue a temporary restraining order without written or oral notice to the adverse party or its attorney only if:

(A) specific facts in an affidavit or a verified complaint clearly show that immediate and irreparable injury, loss, or damage will result to the movant before the adverse party can be heard in opposition; and

(B) the movant’s attorney certifies in writing any efforts made to give notice and the reasons why it should not be required.

(2) Contents; Expiration. Every temporary restraining order issued without notice must state the date and hour it was issued; describe the injury and state why it is irreparable; state why the order was issued without notice; and be promptly filed in the clerk’s office and entered in the record. The order expires at the time after entry?not to exceed 14 days?that the court sets, unless before that time the court, for good cause, extends it for a like period or the adverse party consents to a longer extension. The reasons for an extension must be entered in the record.

But if you want to try to challenge when this occurs:

(4) Motion to Dissolve. On 2 days? notice to the party who obtained the order without notice?or on shorter notice set by the court?the adverse party may appear and move to dissolve or modify the order. The court must then hear and decide the motion as promptly as justice requires.

And here are the problems with the AG using the notice:

1) There is no verification of receiving a notice for the adverse party. Does the AG use email? Snail mail? Do they do a press release (as ICE does now) to show the time of the court hearing?

2) The dajaz1 issue exposes the problem with this procedure. You can file all information about a quick dissolution, but the government can stall with secret court orders.

3) In no way is this proportionate to the defendant. As evidenced elsewhere, the problem of not being heard in one sided hearings can cause a problem with of harming innocent people.


For the most part, there is limited contact with the judiciary court. They seem to be there to rubber stamp the process without a clear indication of what’s actually going on. I have to wonder how much forum shopping occurs for the AG to find a court favorable to their process.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:6 Re:

You should take a look at 102(b)(1) before jumping on to 102(b)(2). You will note that the former is a condition precedent to the latter.

If you have a problem with FRCP 65, then that means you have a problem with every type of lawsuit under all laws that may be filed in the US district courts. What makes you view interesting is that it suggests you are willing to accord greater rights to persons who reside outside the US than you are willing to accord to those who reside within the US.

Jay (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:7 Re:

I’d like both parties to have a fair trial. It’s rather difficult to do so when they are to defend a domain seizure from another country. Somehow believing a site outside the US is costing a company money is rather misleading as well. But that’s another argument for another time.

Those inside the US are already bullied by the ICE seizure process which is erroneous and woefully ineffective.

Now you have SOPA to contend with as an outside “rogue website” which makes no sense.

Judging from my own experiences in reading up on the process, there have been a number of problems with copyright enforcement and government intervention. It’s quite difficult to support a process that does not allow the accused equal attention under the law.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:8 Re:

Finally, a comment that is based upon your personal views, the very type of comment that cannot be criticized and you held up to ridicule because it represents how you feel about an issue. I might criticize your interpretation of a law, but I would never criticize you for how you feel about something. I may feel quite differently, but that is no good reason to say my feeling is better than your feeling.

gorehound (profile) says:

I will also state that it is very sickening to NOT GET THE NEWS on this SOPA/PIPA.
It is pretty much blacked out in nearly all of the Country’s News Stations and Newspapers.So much corruption and non-reporting on the News Side which should be telling stories with an impartial mind but we all on techdirt know the real truth.

And the sad thing is we may not be able to do anything about this nightmare in the end.

CJ (profile) says:

Too many experts in Washington

Oops! My bad sorry. None of them in Congress know how the Internet works.

But really for a bunch of law makers/lobbyist trying to pass a Bill that they feel is right, there sure is a bunch of people saying it’s wrong. Both can’t be right, and sense the bill was made by a bunch of RIAA and MPAA wing nut lobbyist I say the proof should be on them. They must prove there is a piracy problem and they are losing millions or billions. I say they don’t have a chance in hell proving it.

Their problems are caused by tied up courts trying to prosecute grandmas, and dead people. Paying outlandish fees to lawyers.

If Congress has their heart set too pass a Bill, then have them pass one to get rid of frivolous lawsuits, Proof of a case before trial is or could be a great way for all of us to save lots of money.

Getting those lobbyist out of Congress would be something to help/benefit EVERYONE. When money talks laws tend to go south, and don’t help the public good of the people.

A vote that is bought is not a free country.

Anonymous Coward says:

What’s left out are any discussions over the outrageous nature of our current copy protection laws (ie: copy protection lengths).

This is one reason why the government established media cartel needs to be abolished, the government has no business granting monopoly power to a self interested media cartel. But, of course, any discussions about this would also be left out.

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