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back to article Congress puts PIPA and SOPA on back burner

Political leaders have cancelled plans to vote on the SOPA and PIPA legislation currently before Congress, saying more time is needed to examine the issue. Nevada senator Harry Reid, who is shepherding PIPA through the Senate, announced that he would postpone a vote on the bill that was scheduled for next week “in light of …

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Silver badge
Pirate

With all of the 'protect American earnings' flannel

that is supposed to drive these absurd acts,would a protest by say, Sweden, for example that involved not buying any **AA 'product' for a day or so be seen as such a act of Swashbuckling as to to cause Sweden to be cut off from the interwebs? They do all belong to the US after all...

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Anonymous Coward

MR OBAMA

Mr Obama would you like to comment on the rendition flight and extradition cases in the UK?

'Click'

Mr Obama?

Mr Obama?

Mr Obama?

They've cut me off, the bas***SD have cut me off!

THAT IS WHAT THEY CALL CENSORSHIP!

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Mushroom

'protect American earnings'

Is this the sort of earnings this legislation is trying to protect:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timbaland_plagiarism_controversy

Gotta laugh at the Yanks whining about us furriners "stealing" their precious "IP", when AFAICT they're the biggest thieves of all. Just take Disney, as the classic example.

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T J

Tk rrr Trrrrrrrrrrrrbbzzz!!!!

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Pirate

Just watch out for

parts of PIPA/SOPA to be tacked onto other bills as a way to get round the protesters.

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Anonymous Coward

Just give it a week- "Next on Fox News we're announcing the 'Cash For Orphans' act!"

...which would provide massive funding for failed acts of our choice that have lost open political support but which they still want to enact

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Anonymous Coward

They will be tacked on other bills. These congressmen have to earn the money paid to them by the media companies

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Stop

Follow the money

Reading about the Mr Dotcom bust in the NZ Herald, it occurred to me that what SOPA and PIPA are *really* designed to do is to protect excessive profit margins in the copyright-based "industries". If Megadownload can generate so much wealth by dramatically undercutting legitimate prices, those prices must be grossly inflated (if not, the entire theory of market economics is wrong). So the fix needed here isn't SOPA and PIPA - it's some way of encouraging honest competition in the sale of copyright material.

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Impressive!

"If Megadownload can generate so much wealth by dramatically undercutting legitimate prices, those prices must be grossly inflated (if not, the entire theory of market economics is wrong)."

That's a very impressive post, because it is so ignorant. It is *easy* to generate "so much wealth" when you don't have to pay for the product that you're selling. Hey, here's a nice automobile analogy that I am sure that you'll like! Just imagine if Ford or GM didn't have to pay the workers who actually made the cars: What a profit mine that would be!

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Turtle, you miss my point

You miss my point. Of course creatives deserve some of that money; but the copyright industry is just a waste of space that is parasitic on both the creatives and the customers. As long as they attempt to extract excess profits, there will always be someone trying to undercut them. What is disturbing is that the legal system is lined up with the profiteers, not with the creatives or their customers.

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Anonymous Coward

Ignorance indeed.

Precisely.

The marginal cost of a digital copy is as near to $0 as makes no difference, yet they want $15 for it.

What a profit mine it is.

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Anonymous Coward

It's more like

what if GM and Ford didn't have to pay for the rights to use the Internal Combustion Engine... oh, wait- they didn't. And they flourished because of it.

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Silver badge

Assuming, of course...

"The marginal cost of a digital copy is as near to $0 as makes no difference, yet they want $15 for it. What a profit mine it is."

A "profit mine" only assuming, of course that the cost of production of the work was "zero" in the first place. Which it isn't. Rather predictably, your understanding of both economics and economic reality seems to end at a point which is very convenient for your desire to "get stuff for free".

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Silver badge

"Excess Profits"

"As long as they attempt to extract excess profits, there will always be someone trying to undercut them. What is disturbing is that the legal system is lined up with the profiteers, not with the creatives or their customers."

If I ran a store and did not have to pay for merchandise, I would "undercut" all my competitors so handily that they would all be driven out of business. What's your point?

And wtf is "excess profits"? Income derived from anything that costs more than a Premium Account at Megaupload, where you can get as much as your bandwidth will allow? The idea that the "profiteers" are anyone other than thieves like those at Megaupload, selling on the cheap things that they do not own, and did not create, is... odd, to say the very least. But yes, you are right - the legal system *is* lined up with the profiteers: the pirates and Google, who rake in literally billions of dollars by selling ads on pirates sites whose only reason for existence is to link to pirated content, the visitors to the site becoming pageviews and thereby earning AdSense revenue both for themselves and for Google.

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Big Brother

@Yes Me

You keep using the word "undercut" in the case of Megadownload as if a) they were making money from selling digital copyrighted goods (they claim they weren't), and b) even if it were the prime income, they weren't selling it a product that it cost them to produce. I could "sell" digital versions of the entire Universal back catalogue for £0.01 more than the bandwidth it costs to transmit it and make a bloody fortune. Would you still consider me to be "undercutting" Universal?

I agree that digital downloads aren't anywhere near their true costs compared with buying it off the shelf (which I'd generally do, knowing I effectively "own" and am able to transcode it how I like), but I'm rather bored of the pretence that people are pirating to bring down evil profiteers or for altruistic reasons. Greed exists on both sides of the fence.

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Silver badge

The OPEN Act

The OPEN Act is a very transparent attempt to "solve" the piracy problem by making it even more difficult and more expensive for copyright holders to enforce their rights. Such a solution, needless to say, can only be called a solution from the point of view of those who want to continue to profit from content theft. And also people who get campaign contributions from people who profit from content theft.

From http://musictechpolicy.wordpress.com/2012/01/06/heritage-foundation-misses-the-market-on-rogue-sites/ :

"The OPEN Act is a clear act of desperation by companies like Google who have been caught with their hand in the billion dollar cookie jar. In case they cannot actually stop the rogue sites legislation, they want to have the enforcement of the law be slowed down to a stop in a forum that advantages them—an administrative law proceeding in Washington, DC that your average artist will never be able to take advantage of. The distance, cost, limited docket and limited number of lawyers who can take the case—not to mention the fact that Rep. Goodlatte made in the last SOPA markup that the an ITC hearing is a 180 out from the relatively informal DMCA notice process was designed to allow independent artists to protect their rights—would almost guarantee that only the 1% of the 1% would be able to enjoy the protection of the private right of action."

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Unhappy

The good news is that this has been stopped.

The bad news is that it will come back hidden under a blanket.

The really bad news, is that Wednesday's actions has demonstrated that the Internet genuinely is extremely dangerous ... to politicians and sleazy businesses.

The really, really bad news is that they will now go all out to muzzle it.

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Bronze badge

"Guest Post by Alec Rawls

As Congress considers vastly expanding the power of copyright holders to shut down fair use of their intellectual property, this is a good time to remember the other activities that Obama’s “regulatory czar” Cass Sunstein wants to shut down using the tools of copyright protection. For a couple of years now, Sunstein has been advocating that the “notice and take down” model from copyright law should be used against rumors and conspiracy theories, “to achieve the optimal chilling effect.”

What kinds of conspiracy theories does Sunstein want to suppress by law? Here’s one:

… that the theory of global warming is a deliberate fraud. [From page 4 of Sunstein's 2008 "Conspiracy Theories" paper.] "

http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1084585

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/01/20/regulatory-czar-wants-to-use-copyright-protection-mechanisms-to-shut-down-rumors-and-conspiracy-theories/

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FAIL

Global warming?

Yes, the belief that the theory of global warming is a deliberate fraud can accurately be described as a conspiracy theory. (But as Sunstein points out, this is a very different issue than skepticism or even a firm ideological belief that climate change is neither occurring nor likely to occur.)

That said, the use of copyright law to effect political or ideological change (however desirable the end might seem) is a frightening course to take, and is a sobering reminder of the sort of far-reaching misuse we will inevitably see if bills like PIPA and SOPA are passed.

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This post has been deleted by its author

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Facepalm

Lamar Smith...

... should be more careful...!!

http://www.vice.com/read/lamar-smith-sopa-copyright-whoops

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Thumb Up

It was worth following that link purely for the comment using the measure "metric fuckton".

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FAIL

Kicked out of the ergosphere...

Damn it, I said Schwarzschild metric, not Kerr!

http://forums.theregister.co.uk/post/1289688

It cannot be rotating or it can get kicked out of the ergosphere before entering the event horizon!

As per my previous post (for the lazy who cannot be bothered to click): SOPA is "dead" like Jason or Freddy - just when you think it's over, it claws its way back up and attacks again. And when you finally put it down and the movie ends, - just wait for the sequel.

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Megaphone

Get ready for the mud slinging

From now on in expect a barrage of articles on the hinterwebs proclaiming this law to be bad for the copy righters.

So all those people that protested will think. Hey maybe this is the right balance. I'll let this one through only to find its fangs are better hidden than SOPA and PIPA.

Everyone deserves to be paid.... but again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again and again.

Very cynical about this law as well. What we should be doing is checking a few tax returns of these MegaCorps just to see who the real thieves are.

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Fairly compensated!!

I'm all for them being fairly compensated for their work, but miners in the high deserts of Nevada (or practically anyone else who works for a living) doesn't still expect to be getting paid for the work they did 40 years ago.

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WTF?

Terrible foreign thieves!

Interesting how all the thieves must be foreign... I can't imagine anyone in the US downloading...

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Bronze badge
Big Brother

SOPA/PIPA isn't needed

As demonstrated by the takedown of MegaUpload using current laws.

The fact that they haven't just thrown this legislation out as a silly waste of time indicates that there's another agenda in play here.

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Pint

Very interesting web site

http://projects.propublica.org/sopa/

Shows where your members of congress stand on SOPA/PIPA.

Hint: try the 'sort by; $media' function - sorts members via campaign contribution. Very interesting.

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Black Helicopters

Only a temporary reprieve 'til they regroup.

The Copyright Industry mob aren't used to knock-backs. Don't kid yourselves, this ain't success--just a temporary delay. Next round, the Bill's wording will be watertight.

In the meantime, in all countries the US calls allies, the drafting of almost identical yet-unseen laws* continues unabated, this kerfuffle will only ensure that these yet-unseen bills/acts will also be watertight.

[* When the US commanded other countries to implement their versions of the DMCA they said 'yes Lord' and acted immediately.]

**Don't say you haven't been warned.**

The only way to head off (partially ameliorate the effects of) version 2 of SOPA/PIPA is to demand reasonable and fair copyright reform internationally--reform where creators and users both have rights under copyright law. (No, this doesn't mean condoning piracy.)

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Anonymous Coward

Pink dress anyone? Pay teachers royalties

The fashion business seems to operate very effectively and profitably without any of this copyright and patent tomfoolery! Though I have met the odd designer that was bitter at their dress ideas being nicked.

In the world of knowledge! no man/woman is an island. Then I wonder, if all kids where required to pay royalties to their math or English teachers when they grew up, what a high status career teaching would be. And, how little Bankers and Journalists would get!

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Meh

Copyright is *not* like one off manufacturing

Sorry but it just is not. And by the way that includes software.

However note the history of the music industry is full of *creators* who saw *very* little of the money the *collectors* of the cash. It's the collectors who tend to make this fuss.

As for the 70+ years that film copyright persists. Isn't it time for Disney to give it up? If Mickey Mouse is still there biggest money spinner what does that say about the current management and creative output of the company?

I agree with others the *repeated* defense of BAU, rather that finding a way to reward everyone *fairly* will continue. Satan never sleeps.

If the suits of Big Media get their way something will be passed and they will consider it a victory. There business model will continue for a few more years. People's frustration will build until an approach is found that works around the law.

My bet is that if that happens the approach found won't just take a bit of their revenue, it'll take enough to bankrupt them and a whole bunch of people will end up on the street who did not need to loose the jobs *if* there employers had accepted that things *had* to change.

Something tells me the Boards of Big Media will never learn.

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Unhappy

"foreign thieves"

How dare they do something in their own country which is legal there but detrimental to the USA?

They must be removed from their homes forthwith under our terrorist extradition treaties and brought to face trial under laws they're not subject to.

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FAIL

Filesonic has disabled sharing

The banner on their site says "All sharing functionality on FileSonic is now disabled. Our service can only be used to upload and retrieve files that you have uploaded personally", they haven't changed the siteslogan tag though which still says "The next generation of file sharing platform". Combined with the take down of MegaUpload I can see this being a warning to those who think storing and sharing information via "the cloud" is a good idea.

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Mushroom

"Rightfully compensated for a day's work"?

I'd laugh my head off if that comment weren't so pathetically deluded.

You mean "compensated for the REST OF YOUR FUCKING LIFE + 70 YEARS for a day's work", do you not? Wish I could get that kind of "compensation" for the websites I develop!

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Anonymous Coward

A balance is required.

What I think

I agree that copyright is not like one off manufacturing. When I got married our photographer didn't charge a lot but made money from repeat prints and copies for auntie. I note today that an experienced pro costs a lot more but you tend to get a CD print quality images (OK not always). The model has changed but this model doesn't work for the movie industry so they still need bums on Cinema seats and DVD sales if they are going to make £100m blockbusters. They need reasonable legal tools to prevent large scale copying which SOPA isnt.

As an amateur photographer I have a number of friends and internet acquaintences who have had images stolen by various media outlets or other large corporations and who have found it impossible to get any comeback because the court system is so expensive. In addition, some of these outlets that support SOPA have also been pushing for Orphan works bills that allow them to re-steal anything that has had its copyright info stripped. Although I do have some images from WW2 I'd like to use for family history but I can't trace the original photographer so even here I have some sympathy.

I understand there are art galleries who have issues because they own a work but not the copyright which has been sold seperately. This can lead to them being unable to illustrate exhibitions and even having to pay publications fees for photos that appear on the internet. Total lack of balance.

So I'd like to see something that protects the actual creators of works, for less time, and not the big corporations. I'd like to see standard fees for commercial use that anyone can get if their work is used and they can satisfy a tribunal they created it. This should be low cost, essentially you pay in proportion to the tribunal of the award. I'd like to see DRM that forces you to pay for the copyright again when a new format is introduced to be outlawed, you should only have to pay costs plus a small admin fee to commercially format shift and free f you own it in another format and DIY. Yes it should be criminal offence to make money stealing from someone else's copyright but it should only be a civil offence for copying if you don't profit.

It should not be possible to deny a third party a legitimate service in order to prevent copyright fraud.

FWIW Every song on my iPod is paid for on iTunes or from a CD I own and I even paid for the copy of WinZip on my PC so I try to practice what I preach.

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T J
Mushroom

The industry has little time

I think 'the industry' is about to receive what it sowed. Megaupload represents the start, people are not pleased and will show 'the industry' their displeasure, and their corrupt governments. Its not a wise time for overpaid fat useless trolls in parliaments to be bandying around 1984 legislation.....

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