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Mein SOPA

Perhaps the only page on Wikipedia that is available today is the SOPA page describing the Stop Online Piracy Act currently being discussed in the House Judiciary Committee. Wikipedia is otherwise in blackout mode, so if you were planning to read up today on Hollywood's fascination with killing off Sean Bean in just about every role he plays onscreen, you may want to check out IMDB.com or YouTube instead. 

Given Wikipedia's necessary and defensible bias toward quashing this bill, the page is laudably balanced in its write-up of the issues and history of SOPA. And, if it ultimately leads you to the conclusion that SOPA is an ill-conceived bill that will cripple the internet, destroy internet communities, and ravage the landscape of internet-based companies, it's because that is the truth.

To be higher education- and leadgen-minded about it for a moment, imagining the impact of a fully intact SOPA on the edu leadgen industry is an interesting exercise. Certainly, it would clean up the brunt of the brand misrepresentation on behalf of aggressive vendors who work with below-board affiliates. But, this would likely come at the cost of excising most of the aggregator industry itself, which would in essence dry up the opportunities for mid-tier institutions and smaller players who would become difficult to find among the big-brand heavyweights with significant marketing budgets and more sophisticated online marketing tactics. If aggregators couldn't negotiate indemnification from sudden actions taken to shut down a website, and even if they could, the industry would be too risky a place to do business.

They're threatening castration of the internet. Are we going to split hairs?

Published Jan 18 2012 by admin

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