Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Not dark today

Wikipedia and a lot of other web sites have gone dark today to protest SOPA, a proposal to limit lookups to pirate web sites.

Google uses a rare ad on its home page to recruit people to its political cause. What Google does not say is that it makes billions of dollars from indexing pirate web sites, and that limiting piracy is a threat to its business model.

SOPA may have been a bad idea, but it was already dead, and it was not going to destroy the internet or anything like that. The internet has a long history of chicken littles claiming that some law or technology will end the internet, and they have all been wrong. SOPA might make it a little harder to find pirate web sites, and slightly harder for Google to facilitate piracy, but that is about all. If Google wanted to be constructive, it could suggest other ways of dealing with pirate web sites.

So this blog is not going dark today.

Update: After the blackout, the feds seized the overseas file sharing site I thought that the they needed SOPA to have this power. It appears that the feds wanted to make a statement that they will bust pirate sites regardless of the web protests or congressional action. And I didn't see Google sticking up for the free speech rights of megaupload users.

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