Cheezburger Sites Join Reddit In January 18th Blackout

from the where-will-congress-get-its-lolcats-from? dept

Following on the news that Reddit will be blacking out its site for 12 hours on Wednesday, January 18th in protest of SOPA & PIPA, Cheezburger Network CEO Ben Huh has announced that all Cheezburger sites will be doing the same thing. I’m guessing that those who are unfamiliar with the massive size and reach of Cheezburger will scoff at this… but that would be a mistake. People love Cheezburger’s collection of meme-related, meme-driving sites, and they reach a very very large population of folks who might not have already been aware of SOPA/PIPA.

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Companies: cheezburger network, reddit

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Comments on “Cheezburger Sites Join Reddit In January 18th Blackout”

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TMWaH (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Just because SOPA wouldn’t take down Reddit doesn’t mean they can’t be opposed to it. It’s like speaking out against racism when you’re a part of a racial majority. The fact that you’re not directly affected doesn’t mean that you should just let it slide.

Hyperbole is fine, as long as it has a purpose. And right now, the purpose is getting people aware. Is SOPA and PIPA pass, do you really think it will end there? Better to shut them down now, and set a precedent.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Tuning Out

“wouldn’t affect Reddit”

Incorrect. Any censorship system will affect all websites where politically unpopular speech is engaged in. That includes Reddit. Once a censorship system exists, a whole bunch of special interests will come after Reddit, which will get shut down. If you think this legislation is anything other than a long step towards a police state in USA, you are sadly mistaken. False accusation is the standard technique whereby elite persons get rid of inconvenient non-elite persons.

The founding fathers had just experienced a tyrannical government and they were subjected to all the ways that elite persons have of being nasty to anybody who says anything that they do not want to hear. That is why the first amendment is in the US Constitution.

Those who fail to learn the lessons of history are doomed to repeat it.

Richard (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Silly. The bill wouldn’t affect Reddit.

” First they came for the communists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a communist.

Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a Jew.

Then they came for the Catholics,
and I didn’t speak out because I was Protestant.

Then they came for me
and there was no one left to speak out for me.”


Loki says:

Re: Re:

Just because SOPA/PIPA can’t (in theory) by used to block/shut down a site like Reddit does not mean it has no affect on Reddit.

For starters, the bill places certain liability cost/constraints on all web entities. Larger entities like a Facebook or Google will likely be able to absorb those costs constraints. Reddit has already said it is quite likely it will not be able to.

Secondly, despite what we are told this bill can’t/won’t do, the Reddit community (and the rest of us) have already heard what we were told the DCMA couldn’t/wouldn’t do, what the Patriot Act couldn’t/wouldn’t do (and the list of bills goes on) and the misuses/abuses of those pieces of legislation are long and detailed. So telling everyone “well THIS time, we REALLY mean they won’t/can’t be abused” comes off like the hollow BS it is.

Thirdly, while SOPA/PIPA themselves might not allow certain things, we’ve already seen how the content industry and the US government like to pick and choose their bits from various sources to try to say things that aren’t so.

More importantly, SOPA/PIPA do not exist in a void. Pressure is already being placed on other governments (in some cases already successfully) to enact SOPA/PIPA style legislation of their own. Then all that is needed is something like an ACTA (or a later bill that does to ACTA what SOPA does to the DCMA) to tie all those agreements together unilaterally. Then you just need one member of such a treaty to censor something and all the member state are legally “obligated” to do so as well (no we aren’t blocking/shutting down site X because it violates SOPA-US, we are doing it because it violates SOPA-France and are mutual treaty blah blah blah).

And that’s just three ways SOPA can/could have an affect on Reddit. There are certainly others.

Anonymous Coward says:

I’m glad to see people trying to bring awareness to awful legislation that is being forced on everyone by our draconian governments like SOPA and Protect IP.

But honestly, closing down facebook and google… I would welcome that. These companies are involved in mass surveillance. And they don’t just sell this info to other corporations. They sell it to governments. I remember an Internet when these giant corporations didn’t exist and I liked it so much better. So I honestly feel that if the big corporations like Facebook and Google joined in on this and shut their ‘services’ down for a day it would have the opposite effect. If I didn’t know about SOPA I would think it’s something good if it gets rid of Facebook.

Just my 2 cents

Anonymous Poster says:

Re: Re:

People may be opposed to the things Facebook and Google do with the information gathered through their services, but the fact of the matter is that these same services are still legal — and these services are an integral part of daily Internet usage for a great many people around the world. (Google has AdSense, Analytics, Blogger, Gmail, and YouTube sitting next to the eponymous search engine.)

People using the “evils” of Facebook and Google as the argument for their services getting shut down are no better than SOPA supporters who decry the “evils” of sites/services such as Megaupload or the BitTorrent protocol — sites/services which have numerous legal uses — as the basis for passing laws like SOPA.

Facebook and Google certainly have room to improve when it comes to protecting users’ privacy and information, but that shouldn’t be the basis for saying “Facebook and Google should shut all their services down”. Their services are legal and play an important role in sharing information/communicating around the world, and to punish the whole world because these companies’ actions are a little less than ethical or moral or whatever is obscene.

Dean Sorenson (profile) says:

Re: Re:

We need to purge them by setting up public consultants that monitor their actions like the MPPA or EPA or ESA. They have acted poorly in the past, but they have also allowed for our present world to exist. Look at the Arab Spring or consider our current lives without phones. Without these filters we would get lost in the deluge of information. Consider what we have gained compared to what we have lost and then you can decide if keeping them in the future makes sense. Then make your point.

I do not mean to tear you down, but I hope you understand.

Luis says:

Go Cheezburger

Any effort to crush those bills is welcome. Seriously this is pissing off many users and the blackout can be a good begining and i heard wikipedia will join them. Oh boy…..wikipedia has tough chances……and i’m not doubting their effort won’t be worth…

When Google and his alliance decide to do a blackout and join them, wether is the same day or not, man……this will proove those jerks wrong……IF they think they are going to get away with that crap easily, they need to know…what internet can do. Don’t underestimate memes, don’t underestimate sillynes…when critical moments arrive…time to fight back!

Anonymous Coward says:

Lets Pass SOPA!!!

There are some provisions I want included into SOPA before I can support it (and some I would like removed, like the ones Mike is opposed to).

A: Retroactively reduce copy protection lengths to ten years or less.

B: Substantially reduce infringement damages.

C: Substantially increase damages for bogus infringement claims, even if accidental.

D: Ensure that copy protection liability can never be asserted against a service provider, restaurant, or other physical venue that hosts performers, only against those who actually infringe. Attempts to assert copy protections against service providers, restaurants, and other venues will quickly result in huge punitive damages against the plaintiffs upon summary judgement. There can be requirements from service providers to provide some necessary information to plaintiffs so that they can assert lawsuits, but information can only be issued to plaintiffs with court order after probable cause is shown. Then defendants can be contacted by the court to be given a brief opportunity to respond and be forced to appear in court and be tried only if the court finds that probable cause is still likely. Otherwise, defendants may still have their personal information remain hidden from plaintiffs and everyone else. Also, fair use needs to be expanded for independent performers. This will hopefully reduce the legal risk that restaurants and other venues must currently undergo to host independent performers.

E: Make copy protection opt in and require that it gets opt into a centralized database so that others can better reference the content and decipher infringing content from non-infringing content. All content must also be submitted to the library of congress who will store it in several separate locations so that when it finally does enter the public domain, the LOC can publicly make it available for all to freely access.

F: Omit all SOPA provisions that Mike Masnick doesn’t like.

Does anyone else have any other suggestions to add?

If we can get the above provisions made, I’m all for SOPA. LETS PASS IT!!!!

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Lets Pass SOPA!!!

Oh, and btw, all of the sites mentioned here that will publicly oppose SOPA should mention our current copy protection lengths on the blackout date, they should mention retroactive extensions, current infringement penalties vs penalties for bogus infringement claims, the fact the copy protection is opt out and should be opt in instead, and the above provisions that need to be made before the bill will be supported. Make the public aware of how bad our current laws are and how much harm they are currently causing in addition to making them aware of how bad SOPA currently is.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Lets Pass SOPA!!!

I’m being partly serious, why not do more to make people more aware of how bad our current laws are. Kill two birds with one stone, explain to them how bad our current laws are and then explain to them how bad SOPA is. After seeing how bad our current laws are people will take SOPA more seriously because awareness of our current broken system will help people realize that the last thing we currently need is more IP expansion laws like SOPA.

Sure, it may not cause my proposed provisions to get included into SOPA, but perhaps it can encourage more people to pressure congress to do something about our broken laws. If we want to fix our current laws we must start somewhere and spreading awareness is a good place to start.

Violated (profile) says:

Re: Re: Lets Pass SOPA!!!

Keep it up, we all know the problems. You need to add in that all countries should have matching copyright terms. The Internet has no borders so it is crazy to have media under Copyright in one country but Public Domain in another. So Copyright registration should be Universal with a well published termination date.

I would add in that media already subject to Copyright start and end dates can’t have that term extended by any future new laws.

The “terrorist manifesto” is nearing completion… as they would call it.

Tony (profile) says:

A Good Day For The English Language

Personally I can’t stand the stupid pictures of cats with the most horrible spelling/grammar.

I could handle the pictures, but I don’t find the fact that people can’t spell or use proper grammar amusing in the slightest.

No I don’t work for the BBC and I’m not a member of the Royal Family, but I’m not in favour of encouraging people to speak/write in pidgeon English either.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: A Good Day For The Engrish Language

Right…And Heavy Metal is just noise, abstract art is basically just some doodle made by a 3 year old, etc, etc… In short, “Get out of my lawn, darn neighbourhood kids!”.

Look, I don’t “get it” either. But, if some people like this kind of stuff, why not just let them be and do their thing? Complaining about it just makes you look old.

Pete Austin says:

Americans Revolt Against Copyright Powergrab

“As Americans from all walks of life have delved into the twin bills, they have uncovered an unparalleled industry powergrab. Essentially, both PIP and SOPA would give copyright owners the right to shut down any site they deem is pushing infringing material. Although sold as only attacking overseas ?rogue? websites, the legislation expands federal government power, encourages private litigation and threatens legitimate web sites like Google, YouTube and Facebook.

But the game is up. Scientists, entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, and First Amendment advocates have come out strongly against the legislation, while bringing attention to the public at large.”

Mr RC (profile) says:


What I’d like to see… is Google do the same thing, a blackout with a large link pointing to an informational site on SOPA/PIPA on ALL their pages… (perhaps with a timer so that it doesn’t disrupt the web too much) .. essentially giving everyone a taste of what will happen if this comes to pass… and I wouldn’t even say just limit it to … but all google searches (as this bill will affect the world… and perhaps make people pay more attention to what their own gov’ts are doing (I’m sure the Irish Gov’t would like some people support vs EMI))

The same with Youtube just a black page ‘This is your world under SOPA/PIPA if allowed to pass’ a link to relevant informational site.. and a countdown timer ‘Regular service will now be restored’ …

That WILL get peoples attention.. the congress critters may even get pressure from their own families to drop it… big media will not be able to ignore it… it will be totally in everyones face…

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