From an email to me from the folks fighting the Internet censorship bill:
Robert — big news! Yesterday the Senate Judiciary Committee voted unanimously to send the Internet blacklist bill to the full Senate, but it was quickly stopped by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) who denounced it as “a bunker-buster cluster bomb” aimed at the Internet and pledged to “do everything I can to take the necessary steps to stop it from passing the U.S. Senate.”Wyden’s opposition practically guarantees the bill is dead this year — and next year the new Congress will have to reintroduce the bill and start all over again. But even that might not happen: Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Hollywood’s own senator, told the committee that even she was uncomfortable with the Internet censorship portion of the bill and hoped it could be removed when they took it up again next year!
This is incredible — and all thanks to you. Just a month ago, the Senate was planning to pass this bill unanimously; now even the senator from Hollywood is backing away from it. But this fight is far from over — next year, there’s going to be hearings, negotiations, and even more crucial votes. We need to be there, continuing to fight.
Looks like it is going to be blocked. And it looks like it will be stopped next year too.
There is a lot of confusion about this bill, and my post did not help to clarify matters. The bill is not about censoring speech on the Net. It’s all about shutting down sites that traffic in DMCA copyrighted video such as TV shows and movies. It’s basically the corporate entertainment industry pushing it. Obama is a corporate Democrat, and the Democrats have a lot of support for the entertainment industry, so he pushed the bill. The Republicans support it too because they support whatever outrage the Corporate Enemy wants next.
There’s no need for the bill. DMCA video already comes with DMCA tags. I can’t upload such video to my Google/Blogger account. I get an error when I try. I assume many other sites are the same. That’s one way to stop theft. The other way is to issue DMCA takedown orders. Webmasters who deal with video get these things all the time and often comply with them. Problem is that they are often phony and just used as a club by some asshole pretending to have copyright on a video he does not own.
Youtube may have been taken down by this law. Youtube gets copyrighted stuff uploaded all the time, and they are constantly taking it down. The system works. Under the new law, Youtube would automatically be deemed an “illegal site specializing in copyright theft” and would be summarily shut down or put on the blacklist. Ridiculous!