Friday, November 19, 2010

Internet Piracy, Copyright Laws and Censorship

The Senate Judiciary Committee has just approved the Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act (COICA). This bill would allow any website to be shut down by the U.S. Attorney General if copyright infringement is deemed "central to the activity" of the site.

Few people, especially those working with intellectual property, have any problems with the idea of protecting property rights. But this goes too far. If a site is doing something illegal, this illegal activity must be proved in a court of law before the site is shut down.

If there is a timeliness factor to this special courts can be set up that deal with this issue alone. Piracy ought not be difficult to prove. And if it is difficult to prove, it shows that the decision ought to be made in a court of law and not by the Attorney General.

UPDATE: See National Security Song and Dance


Anonymous said...

I think this Act is a backdoor attempt to control internet content.

The Classical Liberal said...

On one hand I'm not willing to say that but on the other hand we have Jay Rockefeller threatening FOX and MSNBC.

Anonymous said...

What did Rockefeller do?

The Classical Liberal said...

Jay Rockefeller said:

"We need new catalysts for quality news and entertainment programming ... There's a little bug in me that wants to get the FCC to say to Fox and MSNBC, 'Out, off, end, goodbye.'

"It would be a big favor to political discourse, our ability to do our work here in Congress - and to the American people for them to be able to talk with each other and have some faith in their government, and more importantly in their future."

Anonymous said...

I think rctlfy is right - it's all about censorship.

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