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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

U.S. | Business

Censorship bills, SOPA and PIPA, suspended in response to Internet blackout
Internet protests follow attempt at SOPA and PIPA to limit government control
LAURA ENDERSON
lenderson@radford.edu

The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect IP Act (PIPA) are the two laws proposed that made the news on Wednesday, Jan. 18 due to an Internet blackout. Both laws were meant to protect content creators from theft in the form of piracy, but created Internet-wide protests that eventually convinced chief sponsor, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith to postpone plans to draft the bill indefinitely on Friday, Jan. 20. The Internet protests were held in the form of 24-hour blackouts, some hosting full blackouts, while others linked to information about the bill and how to join the protest. The Internet blackouts Wednesday, Jan. 18, included sites such as Wikipedia, Google, Reddit, Mozilla, Wordpress, Craigslist, Wired, OatMeal, Tumblr and over 115,000 other websites according to The New York Times. Check out the complete list at sopastrike. com/on-strike. Sopastrike.com also claims that the strike was “the largest online protest in history” and has a whole page devoted to the Jan. 18 black-

out numbers, available at sopastrike.com/on-strike. SOPA mainly focuses on giving content creators the power to force Internet service providers (ISP) to shut down access to a website that the owner believes violated its copyright. Read the bill in its entirety here at thomas. loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/C?c112:./ temp/~c112gyP6uJ. SOPA is designed to stop access to foreign websites that make money from stolen U.S. content. For example, a foreign company could start a networking site and if someone then uploads a video of them singing Bruno Mars, even without the original recording, the Bruno Mars record label could say that it’s an instance of piracy, send a letter to ISP and the foreign networking site will no longer be available to the U.S. users. Applying this concept to other “infringing” material affects art and movie sites, as well as any other site that may fall under fair use. The impact from trying to protect all the copyright infringement could be massive and overstep the original purpose of the bill. Like any censoring regulation, there is always the issue of ‘how far is too far?’ As for PIPA, it deals mainly with

the issue of IP addresses. With PIPA in place, search engines, like Google, would be ordered to remove or disable access to the Internet sites associated with a domain name that went to court for “infringing activities” and wouldn’t be able to provide a hyperlink to that site as well. The difference between SOPA and PIPA is that PIPA only targets domain name system providers, financial companies and ad networks. SOPA is essentially “the Internet death penalty” for offshore websites who break copyright laws. PIPA is the “death penalty” of law-breaking IP addresses. So what does that mean for students? Well your freedom of the internet may be restricted—at least many wokay.com of the websites students use everyday feel that way. Mozilla, makers of Firefox, responded, “Protect the Internet: Help us stop the Internet Blacklist Legislation.” They went on to say

“We can find a solution that will protect lawful content. But this bill is flawed & that’s why I’m withdrawing my support. #SPOA #PIPA” #SP

@RoyBlunt
Senator Roy Blunt
thepoliticalguide.com

See Censorship, 2

Political debates become heated in race for 2012 presidential party nominations
JENNIFER WERNER
jwerner2@radford.edu

2012 presidential election is on the minds of many Americans as the November elections draw closer. One aspect of the election in particular that Americans have focused on at the moment would be the Republican Party. As Republican candidates vie for the Republican Party nomination, the debating process and primaries have gotten heated. Michelle Bachman, Jon Huntsman and Rick Perry have all dropped out of the race, leaving Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum and Ron Paul to compete for the Republican bid. Huntsman, after bowing out, has decided to endorse Romney while Perry has endorsed Gingrich. On Saturday, Jan. 21, Gingrich won the South Carolina Primary, a huge accomplishment for his campaign. However, as eyes turn toward to the Florida primaries, which are scheduled to take place on Tuesday, Jan. 31, the anticipation continues to grow. Florida, a crucial state to win votes from the Electoral College, will certainly be a big player when it comes to the primary. This may present a challenge for each candidate since Florida is a diverse state and not extremely evangelical. Northern Florida tends to lean more to the conservative values whereas southern Florida leans more towards a liberal agenda. Within the Republican Party four candidates battle it out to

gain the main spot against the Democratic Party candidate in November.

Radford University’s English Club will host a book sale in Russel Hall on Thursday, Jan. 26. All proceeds will go toward the English Club and any remaining books will be given to an RU sorority to donate to children.

Newt Gingrich
Newt Gingrich, a former Speaker of the House, has experience working with Congress which could certainly help with reforms, much like Lyndon B. Johnson was able to do. According to his website, newtgingrich360. com, he will implement extensive tax cuts including the elimination of the newt.org Capital Gains Tax, the Death Tax, and severely reducing the Corporate Income Tax. Gingrich plans to introduce an optional flat tax of 15 percent and return to monetary policies that were present and set forth during the Reagan Era in order to strengthen the dollar. When it comes to environmental issues, he plans on implementing an Environmental Solutions Agency to replace the Environmental Protection Agency. Gingrich also plans on creating a more effective border control and creating a “21st Century Visa Program” to address immigration. A supporter of ideals set forth by the founding fathers, Gingrich supports limited government and

Rush for Greek life starts on Feb. 3. Interest tables will be located in the Bonnie the week before.

The Radford University Art Museum will host the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) exhibit in the Covington Center from Jan. 19March 2. The exhibit can be viewed MondayFriday, 10 a.m.- 5 p.m.

RU’s 2012 Recyclemania Contest beings this week. The annual recycling competition has over 600 colleges and universities in North America that participate.

See Debates,3

What’s Inside...
News. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1-3 Crime Report. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 The Scene. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4-6 Suduko. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10

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