Have you dropped by Wikipedia today? If so, you probably learned a bit about the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and not whatever random bit of trivia that brought you there in the first place. That's because Wikipedia is protesting the SOPA bill by blacking-out the entire English speaking portion of its site for the duration of the day.
Drop by the GigMasters homepage today you'll see we have weighed in on the SOPA debate as well. Unlike Wiki, we have paying customers who rely on GigMasters and we would never cut your service just to make a point. We did feel, however, that this was too important of an issue, and one that hits too close to home, for us to ignore. That's why you'll find the above image front and center on our homepage, just for today.
What is SOPA and why does GigMasters care?
It's important to remember that GigMasters is brought to you by a team of over twenty people all with individual opinions on everything from the Splenda vs sugar debate to copyright infringement and censorship. But collectively as a company, we feel that SOPA in its current form is a misguided bill at best and not an effective way to combat online piracy. While we do feel strongly that it is important to protect intellectual property, SOPA is not the way to do it.
To quote the message on our homepage for today:
SOPA stands for "Stop Online Piracy Act." Its name implies the prevention of copyright infringement (good!), but the bill itself is a convoluted document that has far reaching consequences well beyond just copyright. It gives the government power to almost unilaterally censor any foreign website with minimal reason. It could turn fans of artists posting tribute videos on YouTube into felons. It could cause endless litigation against companies, not for any infringment on their part, but just for allowing the potential act of infringement to occur. It could put a lot of sites at risk - including ours.
We are here to be the life of the party and SOPA could very well force us to turn off the lights and cut the music. We encourage anyone visiting our site to do some research, and if you feel the way we do, please take action, not just on our behalf, but for all of us who will be negatively impacted by this deceitful measure.
Take a stand for free speech and our right to an uncensored Internet. Stop SOPA.
There is no shortage of talk about SOPA in the news this week, especially on the Technology blogs and news sites. Here are a few good spots to learn more:
We wan't to know what you think! Leave a comment to let us know where you stand on SOPA.