Microsoft's Cold Feet Over SOPA Behind BSA's 'Rethinking' Its Views

from the tech-turn-around dept

One of the big surprises this week was that the normally "maximalist" organization, the Business Software Alliance (BSA) -- basically the RIAA of software -- did an abrupt and unexpected turnaround on SOPA. While it had been close to gushing in its initial support, it backed that down quite a bit, noting that the bill would likely have unintended consequences that needed to be dealt with. Behind that shift? Apparently Microsoft. Microsoft, who has been quite aggressive on copyright (and patent) enforcement lately, has always publicly supported these bills, in contrast to nearly all of the rest of the tech industry. However, even it appears to recognize that SOPA goes way too far, and apparently had a little discussion with the BSA about backing down.

Equally interesting in that article? Even AT&T appears to be quietly pushing back against SOPA:
Microsoft isn't the only company to embrace Protect IP yet have reservations about SOPA. Tim McKone, AT&T's executive vice president of federal relations, told CNET last week that "we have been supportive of the general framework" of Protect IP. But when it comes to SOPA, all AT&T would say is that it is "working constructively with Chairman Smith and others toward a similar end in the House."
To say this is unlike AT&T would be an understatement. It's been expected all along that they would support whatever was proposed on the SOPA/PIPA front. Apparently, now that they've taken the time to actually understand what the bill proposes, they recognize how it goes way, way too far...
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Filed Under: copyright, protect ip, sopa
Companies: at&t, bsa, microsoft


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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 23 Nov 2011 @ 12:26pm

    I'm not convinced all of them really understand (or perhaps even care) about the potential implications of these bills. I think their biggest concern is to some extent a strong enough backlash could result (as has already happened in s few cases) in contenders to the status quo using this as an assist to help remove some long entrenched politicians from office. A few firebrands here or there to help create the illusion the people are still in some sort of control is acceptable. Potentially large scale shifts to "untested" representatives is something they definitely do not want.

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