Business Software Alliance withdraws support for Stop Online Piracy Act
Supporters of the Stop Online Piracy Act are looking increasingly isolated
IDG News Service - The U.S. Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), which would allow U.S. authorities to seize the domain names of copyright-infringing websites, has taken another blow as a leading proponent has withdrawn its support.
The Business Software Alliance (BSA), which initially supported SOPA, has decided the legislation goes too far.
"Valid and important questions have been raised about the bill. It is intended to get at the worst of the worst offenders. As it now stands, however, it could sweep in more than just truly egregious actors," BSA president and CEO Robert Holleyman wrote on the BSA blog.
SOPA would enable the U.S. government to block access to websites internationally. This not only includes the .com domain, but also .net and .org, domain names which are used by millions of organizations outside the legal jurisdiction of the U.S.
"Due process, free speech, and privacy are rights that cannot be compromised. And the security of networks and communications is indispensable to a thriving Internet economy. Some observers have raised reasonable questions about whether certain SOPA provisions might have unintended consequences in these areas," Holleyman wrote.
Such a dramatic turnaround seems to be part of a growing realization that copyright infringement legislation is going too far. At the weekend, European Union Digital Agenda Commissioner Neelie Kroes said,"Citizens increasingly hear the word copyright and hate what is behind it. Many see the current system as a tool to punish and withhold, not a tool to recognize and reward."
"It is simplistic to assume that because some intellectual property protection is good, that such protection should therefore be absolute in all circumstances. Let's ask ourselves, is the current copyright system the right and only tool to achieve our objectives? Not really, I'm afraid. We need to keep on fighting against piracy, but legal enforceability is becoming increasingly difficult," she said.
Meanwhile last Friday the European Parliament added its voice to those calling for SOPA to be abandoned. And more than 60 civil and human rights organizations wrote a letter to Congress calling for the rejection of SOPA. The letter argues that the act "is as unacceptable to the international community as it would be if a foreign country were to impose similar measures on the United States."
The Business Software Alliance represents IT companies including Microsoft, SAP, IBM, Dell and Hewlett-Packard.
- Social Media Education: The New Edge for Success Failure to train for social media will cost your business money. A recent report showed how digitally prepared companies can unlock up to...
- Social Media in Technology: A Unified Strategy for Success Find out how social media is sparking a new era of customer and industry-understanding in technology enterprises and how industry leaders are overcoming...
- How Network Connections Drive Web Application Performance Users around the globe, on all sorts of devices, expect Web applications to function as seamlessly as desktop applications. This paper discusses the...
- Mission Critical: Managing Mobile Applications & Content Smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices have become embedded in enterprise processes, thanks to the consumerization of IT and a new generation of...
- Keep Servers Up and Running and Attackers in the Dark An SSL/TLS handshake requires at least 10 times more processing power on a server than on the client. SSL renegotiation attacks can readily...
- On Demand: Mastering the Art of Mobile Content Management Mobile device usage in the enterprise has skyrocketed, and it continues to escalate. IT must answer to users who demand access to their... All Internet White Papers | Webcasts
Our new bimonthly Internet of Things newsletter helps you keep pace with the rapidly evolving technologies, trends and developments related to the IoT. Subscribe now and stay up to date!