Category Archives: Internet censorship

Demand Progress and its million-plus members declare victory — encourage Americans to "Vote for the Net"

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: David Moon, (202) 427-7966 and Moon@DemandProgress.org


WASHINGTON – Today, progressive Internet advocacy group Demand Progress declared victory over the Internet Blacklist Bills (aka PIPA & SOPA). After a year-long battle with civil liberties, human rights, and Internet freedom advocacy organizations and their members, U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid cancelled a planned January 24th procedural vote on the bill. During the conflict, Demand Progress grew its membership list from zero to over one million members, and generated more than 3 million contacts to Congress.

Demand Progress encouraged Internet users to visit its new site, VoteForTheNet.com, where voters can pledge to oppose censorship supporters, and can donate to the four senators who’ve long promised to filibuster PIPA and SOPA. The site is a joint partnership with the right-leaning organization, DontCensorTheNet — More than 70,000 Americans have signed the pledge in the last 72 hours.

Demand Progress Executive Director David Segal stated, “Today Internet users around the world have reason to celebrate. The battle over PIPA and SOPA will go down in history as a turning point in the battle to keep the Internet free from undue corporate and government control. But mark my words — this is just the beginning. We can never allow dangerous legislation like PIPA and SOPA to move forward in any form: After the year of back-room deals that led to the drafting and near-passage of these bills, nothing less than complete transparency throughout any legislative process — with the input of Internet users — will be acceptable.”

Segal pointed to MPAA Chairman Chris Dodd’s comments in today’s New York Times: “No Washington player can safely assume that a … heavily financed legislative program is safe from a sudden burst of Web-driven populism” http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/20/technology/dodd-calls-for-hollywood-and-silicon-valley-to-meet.html?_r=2&ref=business

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Filed under Demand Progress, Internet censorship, internet piracy, NY Times, PIPA, press release, SOPA, Stop Online Piracy Act(SOPA)

Fwd: Strike organizers applaud announcement that Senate and House have postponed action on the proposed web censorship bills

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT
Fight for the Future
Tiffiniy Cheng
Holmes Wilson
press@fightforthefuture.org
(614) 465-6371
(508) 474-5248

January 20, 2012

Fight for the Future, which ran the largest organizing sites for the recent SOPA protests (sopastrike.com and americancensorship.org), applauds the announcement that the Senate and House have postponed action on the proposed web censorship bills.

“We sent the MPAA back to the drawing board,” said Fight for the Future Co-founder Holmes Wilson, “But any law that lets the copyright lobby block our websites, censor our search results, or cut off our Paypal accounts–without even going through a judge–will be soundly defeated.”

“This was the largest online protest in history,” said Fight for the Future Co-founder Tiffiniy Cheng, “The MPAA was trying to quietly force this bill through Congress, but when internet users started paying attention, real democracy happened. This is a watershed moment in the fight against lobbyists’ influence on politics.”

“The MPAA could have proposed a law to address copyright infringement,” said Holmes Wilson, “Instead, they proposed giving rightsholders veto power over online innovation and free expression. At that point, it was just a matter of getting the public involved.”

A timeline of the SOPA protests: http://sopastrike.com/timeline
Statistics from the January 18 protest: http://sopastrike.com/numbers
Statistics from the November 16 protest: http://americancensorship.org/infographic2.html


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Filed under fight for the future, Internet censorship, internet piracy, SOPA

Local Internet Freedom Groups, Opponents Of Internet Censorship Bills Take Their Disapproval to Town Halls, Meetings With Lawmakers

Urge constituents who oppose PROTECT IP Act and Stop Online Piracy Act to visit my.americancensorship.org for more info on how to attend a meeting

Contact: press@fightforthefuture.org

With Congress still threatening to pass Internet censorship legislation when it returns from break later this month, opponents of the PROTECT IP Act (PIPA) and the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) have set up dozens of in-person meetings with their lawmakers and are organizing groups to attend their lawmakers’ town hall meetings.

Opponents are organizing themselves into local Internet Freedom groups and plan to ask Senators questions related to the controversial legislation. The groups are often made of individuals who have never been politically active before. For lawmakers who have no public events, participants are being walked through the process of setting up meetings with their elected officials.

A list of already-scheduled town halls and meetings may be found at https://fightfortheftr.wordpress.com/. And to find out about — or to set up new meetings — Internet users may visit http://my.americancensorship.org/.

The House Judiciary Committee is scheduled to recommence deliberations on SOPA on January 23rd. On January 24th, the full Senate is set to begin consideration of PIPA — likely triggering a filibuster by opponents.

According to Fight for the Future co-founder Tiffiniy Cheng, “Senator Reid is moving quickly to pass PROTECT-IP, although the majority of Americans are opposed to it. Apparently, we only have these last two weeks to make sure lawmakers know that most of the internet and the local people who use it are one hundred percent opposed to these bills — and that we’re going to hold them accountable for the way they vote. It’s amazing to see how motivated people are to help stop these bills — they are taking the legislation into their own hands.”

SOPA and PIPA would give the government and corporations broad new powers to block Americans’ access to websites that are accused of copyright infringement, and to otherwise undermine those sites’ abilities to function.

Fight for the Future and dozens of other organizations and companies have steered more than 4 million contacts to Congress in opposition to PIPA and SOPA.

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Filed under Congress, House Judiciary Committee, Internet censorship, PIPA, PROTECT-IP, SOPA, US Sen. Harry Reid

Countless Web Companies And Advocacy Groups Gear Up To Kill The Stop Online Piracy Act This Week

For Immediate Release:

Contacts:
David Segal, David@DemandProgress.org and (401) 499-5991
David Moon, Moon@DemandProgress.org and (202) 427-7966

Aim to drive hundreds of thousands of constituent contacts to Congress before House vote on SOPA; Encourage the whole web to take part

Washington, DC — More than 70 tech firms from across the web and advocacy groups from across the political spectrum asking urging their users and members to contact Congress and urge members to oppose the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA). SOPA is scheduled for a vote in the House Judiciary Committee this Thursday at 10AM.

Internet users can contact Congress by visiting AmericanCensorship.org. To give Americans a sense of what the Internet would be like if SOPA passes, any Internet user can use a tool there to “censor” parts of their emails and posts to Twitter, Facebook, blogs, or other websites. To ‘uncensor’ the post, their friends and readers must visit AmericanCensorship.org and contact their own members of Congress. Here’s a sample ‘censored’ post.


To underscore the negative impact SOPA would have on economic growth and innovation, people who are employed by web-related companies — and people who earn income blogging, selling items online, or otherwise make a living by using the Internet — are encouraged to post photos of themselves to IWorkForTheInternet.org. Just a few hours after the site’s launch last evening, more than 1,000 people had done so.

SOPA would kill tech jobs and stifle innovation, undermine cybersecurity, censor the Internet in America, and give comfort to foreign regimes that seek to censor the Internet in order to undermine political speech and dissent. If it passes, social networking sites would need to police their users’ content more aggressively, sites would be shut down with negligible due process, and people could be jailed for posting copyrighted content (like background music and karaoke videos). This New York Times op-ed serves as a good primer on the bill’s failings.

According to Demand Progress executive director David Segal, “This week is do or die: If SOPA passes through committee, House leadership can call for a full vote at any time. But if we can beat it this week, there’s a good chance it’ll be gone for good. Anybody who cherishes a free, secure Internet — and the economic development and benefit to our democracy that come with it — needs to call Congress right away.”

Participating sites include Tumblr, Reddit, Mozilla, Union Square Ventures, Fight for the Future, Demand Progress, Public Knowledge, MoveOn, Free Press, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Wikimedia, the Free Software Foundation, the Center for Democracy and Technology, and dozens of others. They include the groups that drove more than two million contacts to Congress through last month’s “American Censorship Day” effort, and many more.


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Filed under Congress, Demand Progress, Internet censorship, NY Times, Stop Online Piracy Act(SOPA), tech jobs, the Internet