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Posted at 12:41 PM ET, 01/19/2012

What are SOPA and PIPA? Education about the bills continues after online protests

Sites across the Internet are declaring a semi-victory after Wednesday’s protests that blacked out sites such as Wikipedia, Craigslist and Reddit. The protests concern two bills: the Stop Online Piracy Act and the Protect Intellectual Property Act.
(Eric Risberg/AP)

Wikipedia reports that more than 162 million people saw its shuttered homepage that gave information on the acts and why Wikipedia believes the legislation could do grievous damage to the Internet. Google, which blacked out its logo, said 4.2 million people signed its petition asking for the bills to be dropped.

Technology companies have been fighting against the bills for some months now, but the protests brought the bills into national prominence for the first time. Now, those technology companies have begun to turn toward educating people about why the believe the bills could be dangerous for the Internet.

Joshua Topolsky writes at The Post why, even as a content creator, he feels “SOPA and PIPA are like taking a sledgehammer to something when you need a scalpel.”

He’s not the only one trying to explain his stance after the protests. The popular online education site Khan Academy posted this video explaining what it sees the bills possibly enabling:

And TED Talks had Clay Shirky in its office to explain the bill:

By  |  12:41 PM ET, 01/19/2012

Tags:  National, SOPA, PIPA

 
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