Wednesday’s massive Internet protest against the Stop Online Piracy Act in the House and the PROTECT IP Act in the Senate was both an historic moment in Internet history and a massive political success. Dozens of Senators and Representatives switched sides, breaking the momentum for the bills and forcing indefinite delays in their passage. Just today, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced that the cloture vote on PIPA, originally scheduled for next Tuesday, will be postponed. Even Lamar Smith, House sponsor of SOPA, said that he would have to “wait until there is wider agreement on a solution” before moving forward with the bill.
SOPA and PIPA are not dead yet. But as the New York Times put it in their summary article: “Don’t mess with the Internet.”
If you want to hear more about the abuses that SOPA and PIPA would allow, New Left Media has a superb overview:
Jon Stewart covered the bills several times over the last few weeks. Here’s his segment from Wednesday night:
Above all, website blackouts were the signature component of Wednesday SOPA/PIPA Day of Action. Coordinated by MDF grantee Fight For the Future’s brilliant SopaStrike site, over 115,000 sites participated – many with extraordinary creativity. We’ve gathered screenshots of some of our favorites below.
flickr provided a tool for users to black out portions of their photos:
I Can Haz Cheezburger (and affiliated sites):
Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal:
The Center for Media Justice linked directly to SopaStrike.com:
Free Press/Save the Internet/Save the News:
The Electronic Frontier Foundation:
Greenpeace International chose a template provided by SOPAStrike.com:
Syracuse University School of Information Studies: