Graphic Artists Guild Changes Mind: Withdraws SOPA Support

from the good-for-them dept

It seems that many of the supporters of SOPA blindly signed on thinking things like “gee, protecting copyrights sound good,” but without looking at the details (or recognizing the implications). The latest to change their position is the Graphic Artists Guild (sent in by Ross Pruden), which has put out a statement saying that, after hearing from a number of concerned members, it no longer supports SOPA:

We have been closely following online anti-piracy legislation since we submitted a Comment Letter to the study conducted by Victoria Espinel, the Intellectual Property Enforcement Commissioner, in 2010. We supported the IPEC?s recommendations in her 2010 report. The ?Stop Online Piracy Act? has different terms that we can no longer support.

We are concerned that the bill may have unintended consequences that may do more harm than good.

At this time, we are withdrawing our support for SOPA. We don?t see the Committee making significant changes during the mark-ups that would narrow the scope and process outlined in the bill that so many of you are concerned about. We?re doing our best, watching out for you.

The key point is that a big part of what caused them to change their minds was that they heard from many members questioning the decision to publicly support the bill:

We further want to thank everyone who has emailed or Tweeted the Guild expressing dissent. Your comments helped us decide to take another look at the bill and to withdraw our support at this time. For the record, we have not spent a dime on any lobbyist in Congress for this bill.

Looks like all that hyped up “support” for the bill continues to crumble.

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Companies: graphic artists guild

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Comments on “Graphic Artists Guild Changes Mind: Withdraws SOPA Support”

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21 Comments
Anonymous Coward says:

There never was support for SOPA to begin with. What’s really crumbling is the COC & RIAA, etc’s illusion of widespread public support for SOPA.

Groups like the COC & RIAA may not have enough members who can force them to change their minds, but that’s not the case for most of the other groups they got to claim support for SOPA.

Ima Fish (profile) says:

We are concerned that the bill may have unintended consequences that may do more harm than good.

The naivety is so refreshing. Guys, the consequences have all been thought out in excruciating detail. It’s just that the copyright industry doesn’t give a rip about our first amendment rights or the integrity of the infrastructure of the internet.

Where you see problems, they see profits.

anonymous says:

‘For the record, we have not spent a dime on any lobbyist in Congress for this bill.’

such a shame that there are so many that have spent (wasted) money on this and similar Bills. shame also that those in power will continue to accept ‘campaign contributions’ and support big industries and corporations instead of doing what they were elected to do, ie, listening to the people and doing what is best for them.

Gwiz (profile) says:

It’s not surprising to me that yet another group is jumping off the SOPA/PIPA bandwagon.

What really surprised me was the fact that there is a Graphic Artists Guild in the first place and that’s exactly what I do for a living.

It’s also kind of interesting that the Graphic Artists Guild holds a strong pro-copyright stance. From my day to day experiences as a graphic artist I would have to say that 90% of what I produce is remixes or mash-ups of what has been done before.

ExistentialThreat (profile) says:

Re: Re:

I’m with Gwiz on this. 10 years + as a graphic artist and I’ve never heard of them either. We constantly have to play copyright/trademark police. Every other day somebody comes in with official NFL or corporate merchandise wanting us to reproduce it. They always leave mad that we won’t accommodate them. Whenever someone brings in a design that looks too good the first thing I do is a Google image search. I often wonder how many times we “infringe” with fonts alone. It’s getting to the point where if you want to kill your competitors locally all you would have to do is send in someone to order something that infringes and if they don’t catch it, you run and tell on them.

AJBarnes says:

Another one

GoDaddy, a large hosting company in Arizona, stated loudly and proudly they fully supported SOPA. An blog on reddit and then on Ars pointed this out and GoDaddy was designated the recipient of a boycott by people not liking their very public and loud pronouncement on how good SOPA was. Someone followed up and GoDaddy said the boycott had absolutely minimal effect and they were standing by their proclamation. This too was rebroadcast on Reddit and Ars. Within 24 hours, the response was so great (apparently) that GoDaddy reversed their position, eliminated all their online position papers on why they supported SOPA and then did a lame “We really didn’t mean it” set of posting in their forums. Word has it their legal counsel was part of the entertainment community pushing this crap on the public. See http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2011/12/victory-boycott-forces-godaddy-to-drop-its-support-for-sopa.ars for more details.

Anonymous Coward says:

Nope, sorry. As an aspiring graphic artist in college, I have to say that I’m severely disappointed. This decision was obviously made without democratic consent from their own members, and the fact that they only listened when they were “tweeted” is an obvious sign of that. I don’t know where this union gets off being the MPAA and RIAA’s bitch, but they don’t represent me, and unless they make major changes, they never will.

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