Yeah. You saw that line at the end of the video? “And ordinary users could go to jail for up to five years for posting any copyrighted work — even just singing a pop song”?
Welp. So much for “Oh, Something Arty.” That post with my Beatles and Beach Boys covers? Bam!
And of course Twitter and Facebook would have to follow up on each of my links to this blog to make sure everything I’m doing is okay.
If you want a more in-depth analysis of the bills, I suggest you check out the articles at Gizmodo and especially Techdirt. They’re very thorough and a great explanation of why this is such a terrible idea. As well, this piece from Good, an active-citizenship website, lays out the “what if” scenario very clearly.
Fortunately, Handel’s safe. But he wouldn’t have been if he’d been posting today. And that sounds silly, but…it’s not!
Now, I’m not for piracy. I’m not against copyright (though I think current copyright laws are a liiittle too generous in their statutes of expiration…)
But I do think this:
The media companies backing this legislation would be better served finding new methods of distribution that work WITH the internet than struggling against it. Netflix and Spotify are both fantastic services that give us amazing access to movies and music while making piracy or copying files impossible.
There’s a way to do this that doesn’t involve blacklisting websites,
or forcing Google & co. to police the web,
or letting a site be taken down on the basis of a “letter in good faith” and THEN actually looking into the details.
You’ll hear people saying that Wikipedia, Youtube, Facebook and so on will be shut down by this legislation. They probably won’t; they’ve got a lot of money and a lot of lawyers, and they’ll work out a way to stay up. But the easiest way for them to do that is just kill any links that might be dangerous — like, say, any link you ever post to a video or a picture or a recording. And of course, websites like mine, without that sort of backing? They won’t — I won’t — stand a chance.
Piracy is a problem, but this isn’t the way to solve it. Please sign a petition like those hosted by Google and Reddit — heck, here’s one specially aimed at video gamers — and give your senators and representatives a call. I did! It was actually very pleasant. They have nice interns.
For all of our sakes, please take action. Every call makes a difference!
Thank you 🙂