Ditto talks about SOPA and PIPA, what is it all about?
Hi everybody, It’s Ditto. So a lot of people are talking about this SOPA and PIPA thing today, there are a lot of websites that are blacked out because of it, and it’s all over the news. Ditto is not really a political monster, so me doesn’t get into things like this much, but I will say a little bit about it, because it could affect me and everyone else who runs a website or uses the internet.
First, what is SOPA and PIPA? Well, they are cute and silly names for some pretty major political bills that are currently being talked about in Congress. SOPA is the Stop Online Piracy Act, and PIPA is the Protect Intellectual Property Act. These sound pretty important, right? I mean, protecting intellectual property and stopping online piracy are important things, they sound like they are supposed to help people and protect the content creators who work very hard to make new music, and TV shows, and movies, and books, and games – all the entertainment we enjoy every day. I am a content creator, and even though I don’t charge for what I do, it does cost me money and time – lots of time – do create content for my website. Now try to Imagine people who are trying to make a living by making music, or movies, or some other form of entertainment that takes a lot of time and money to create. It would not be a very good thing if all their hard work was stolen by people or given away for free. That would make people very sad, and would make people not want to create new things for other people to enjoy. Maybe that’s why we have two ‘Chipmunks’ movie sequels and not a lot of actual new (or good) ideas coming out of Hollywood lately…
So SOPA and PIPA are supposed to protect content creators – so were these things created by the people they are supposed to protect? Well no, and that’s the start of a very long list of problems. SOPA and PIPA were created by our government (That is the US government, for my non-US fans), with the help of major content OWNERS – that’s the major movie studios and record labels, who sometimes don’t have people’s best interests in mind when they do things like this. What these acts would do is allow major content owners to essentially ‘shut off’ websites who they say are violating their copyrights – posting their content without proper permission. They can do this without any proof, too – so if someone like, say, Warner Brothers, said that Ditto was hosting something that they own, then Dittomonster.com could – and would – be shut down, and Ditto would have to fight a court case to get it back. And of course, Ditto is a furry monster and doesn’t have things like money or a lawyer, so there wouldn’t be much I could do, even if I wasn’t actually doing anything I wasn’t supposed to. This also includes posting about ways to get around SOPA, and even worse, it also includes things like blog comments, too – so if I post a fun gameplay video on my website, and someone posts a link in the comments that tells people how to download old episodes of ‘Fraggle Rock’ for free, under SOPA the owners of ‘Fraggle Rock’ could shut down my website just for that. Scary huh? Oh, and did I mention this also includes Twitter and Facebook and other social networks, so Facebook and Twitter would legally have to censor all posts looking for SOPA violations, or risk serious consequences, including possibly being shut down!
There is a lot more to this, of course, and I will post a few good links below if people want more information, but my feeling is this – as a content creator, I agree that our content and intellectual property should be protected, but this is not the way to do that. SOPA and PIPA are huge and scary and would change the face of the Internet as we know it – and not in any good ways!! They are poorly written, completely favor the giant corporations that are the major content owners, and have the potential for massive scale abuse that can only hurt consumers, Internet users, and smaller independent content creators.
I am a furry orange monster, and I DO NOT support SOPA and PIPA!