You may have noticed that as of a couple of hours ago, Bookslingers has gone dark in support of the anti-SOPA Internet strike being led by Wikipedia, Reddit, and other sites.
If you haven’t, then you should click here to read about it. Because it’s important.
In solidarity with Reddit, Wikipedia and other sites, this site is blacked out today (January 18th, 2012) in protest against SOPA and PROTECT IP (PIPA) laws currently under discussion in the United States.
While we, the Bookslingers, are thoroughly Canadian, we host our site on American servers. SOPA and PIPA present a clear and present danger not only to American free speech, but to free expression and open access to the Internet for anyone who hosts content, registers a domain, or indeed uses any online service that is located or administered in the United States of America.
Any site whose content might be challenged as a violation of anyone’s copyright; even if the content is being used legally, within the boundaries of fair use. And the same forces behind SOPA and PIPA have been exerting pressure in Canada; the objectionable digital locks provisions in the proposed Canadian Bill C-11 are there largely due to American pressures.
So if you were wondering if this has anything to do with you, when you’ve probably never even considered violating anyone’s copyright: the answer is a resounding YES.
If you’re an American, please, please contact your congressional representative and tell them to vote ‘No’ on this law.
If you’re a Canadian, this is a good time to write to your Member of Parliament to register your objection to digital lock rules in Bill C-11.
If you’d like to learn more, this article by Michael Geist is a good place to start.