More And More Internet Infrastructure Players Coming Out To Say How Bad SOPA/PIPA Are

from the anyone-support-it? dept

We've noted in the past that most of the people who actually understand the basic internet infrastructure have come out against SOPA and PIPA. That includes both individuals and companies (such as OpenDNS and Dyn), but it appears that we may be reaching a tipping point with tons and tons of internet infrastructure companies speaking out against these bills. We've already talked about the massive GoDaddy backlash... but it's interesting to note that many registrars and hosting companies are using this as an opportunity to speak out against SOPA and PIPA. Hover, Dreamhost, NameCheap and have all made explicit statements on their blogs. Back in the DNS space, EasyDNS has written a blistering anti-SOPA post on its blog:

If this becomes law, it's a short stretch from SOPA to NODA (No Online Dissent Anywhere) and if you think I'm a nutcase for saying so, I'd like to remind everybody what happened just over a year ago, when US politicians were tripping over themselves to shut down wikileaks (a royal fiasco in which this company was embroiled) and to this day, they have not been charged with a crime anywhere.

Many of the "dirty tricks" employed against Wikileaks would be enshrined in law under SOPA (and someday, NODA):

  • A requirement that service providers block access to offending domains, including that they stop resolving their DNS
  • Search engines to purge search results for offending domains
  • Payment processors to sever ties to offending domains

And they added an extra provision that it will be an offense to knowingly create a service or system to provide a workaround to a banned domain or host. So for example, they would no longer have to hassle Mozilla to remove that firefox plugin that lets you reach ICE blocked websites, it would be illegal to make it or distribute it.

And that's not all. As if to drive home the point, a relatively new group called the SaveHosting Coalition just came out with a letter signed by over 300 execs involved in internet infrastructure companies, saying they're against SOPA. The full letter, embedded below, is well worth a read. It's quite comprehensive, and basically makes it quite clear that SOPA isn't just bad for internet infrastructure, but it's bad for jobs and the economy, as well as pretty much anyone who does anything online. Here's just a snippet:
We write to express that, after careful review of H.R.3261 - the Stop Online Piracy Act of 2011 (SOPA), we believe that this legislation will lead to significant loss of high-wage, high-tech jobs in our industry and other industries that are directly or indirectly supported by our industry. This impact will diminish the attractiveness of U.S. companies to foreign customers, while also reducing the U.S. hosting industryís ability to compete with foreign competition within our own borders. Further, and of equal importance, weaknesses in SOPA may actually lead to less protection for intellectual property owners by undermining the stability of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). Finally, SOPA undermines the U.S. judicial systemís reputation as a fair and transparent method of resolving business disputes.
It's getting more and more ridiculous for anyone to suggest that SOPA isn't harmful to the wider internet infrastructure, when pretty much anyone who knows anything about that infrastructure has come out against the bill.

Filed Under: copyright, dns, hosting, infrastructure, internet, pipa, protect ip, sopa

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  1. icon
    NothingReally (profile), 23 Dec 2011 @ 3:27pm


    I am.

    Look, I can "read between the lines" and know enough to say that the majority of those AGAINST SOPA have something to lose other than Freedom of Speech.

    Hosting sites are obviously concerned about being shut down for not checking if their consumers are distributing child pornography / illegal content.

    The "founders of the internet" is preposterous; Appeal to Authority -__-. Those working on the DNSSEC do have a point, but they aren't concerned in the slightest over security... that's just a layman's smoke screen.

    What they ARE concerned about is how much work they'll have to do to accommodate what the government wants to do.

    Just take a second to think here:
    DNS Spoofing is more likely to occur over "unsecure connections", open wifi, tunneling, or anything where a middleman is involved.

    Now the ISP's can be seen as a middle man... but they aren't going to redirect you. Rather, they're going to say "okay, this DNS entry is illegal... so we won't forward the request and send back a 404 error."

    In fact, since the ISPs are the final stop... internet securities don't really apply. Your ISP is a bit like a proxy... and if a proxy modifies the page content then the internet hasn't been broken.

    As far as the rest of the nonsense... about censorship (as if censoring copyrighted material is illegal), about how 1 illegal item means you can shut a page down (it doesn't... but if you don't take preventative measures and those items keep growing... well... that really is YOUR fault as a CONTENT HOST.)

    I mean, saying that Youtube shouldn't be responsible for the piracy that occurs is like saying that a movie theater shouldn't be responsible for playing downloaded movies (i.e. not paying licensing fees).

    YouTube makes MONEY (somehow) from people using it's service for illegal content.... and that is what this is about.

    Unless YouTube were to actually TRY to filter copyrighted material (which they said they don't want to even though they could) they're intentionally distributing it and using the DMCA as a cover.

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