Las Vegas Review-Journal Publishes CEA OpEd Calling Out Senator Harry Reid Killing Innovation By Supporting PIPA
from the wronghaven dept
Las Vegas' role as a leader in innovation is somewhat ironic, given that Nevada Sen. Harry Reid, who has never once visited the CES, is a leader in efforts that oppose the type of innovation and technology fueling CES and other events. Unlike the rest of the pro-CES, pro-innovation Nevada delegation, Sen. Reid stands alone. The current innovation-throttling legislative fad is focused on "Internet piracy." Majority Leader Reid said he would bring the Protect IP Act (PIPA) to the Senate floor this month despite it being opposed by virtually every innovation and technology company and almost everyone who understands and uses the Internet.You would think, at some point, Reid would realize what a mistake he's making. The companies at CES are not "piracy apologists." Most of them have big concerns about counterfeit products and trademark violations. In fact, some of the companies here are among the most aggressive on trademark litigation (something I think many go too far on). And yet... when Senator Wyden and Representative Darrell Issa took the stage on Wednesday to explain why they think PIPA and SOPA are dangerous, they got a standing ovation from the audience.
It highlights how out of touch Washington has become with modern communication and use of the Internet. The goal of protecting intellectual property from digital theft is the right one, but the overreaching measure Sen. Reid is pushing swiftly through Congress will chill Internet innovation, economic progress and job growth. It's a product of copyright extremists pouring money -- more than $91 million in 2011, more than they've ever spent before -- into influencing the legislative process.
Supporters still want to believe that the "opposition" to these bills is just Google and some random internet kids. If Harry Reid actually ever bothered to come to one of these events -- where he could see the innovation and the job creation going on, perhaps he'd realize that the concern is real, it's serious, and it's widespread.