Media Curiously mute on SOPA despite web Blackout

Save On-line Piracy Act-SOPA- had invited wide protests world-wide and among the communities the protest was not more vociferous anywhere   as in the web.

protest image against SOPA.
SOPA Protest.

Led by such sites like Mozilla ,Google,Wikipedia,Reddit and the like the effect on SOPA seems to be the opposite.

First came the crash of Megaupload.

Now it is the turn on of Filesonic.

The Media especially the Electronic and the Print Media do not seem to be bothered much.

Could be that the purse strings are controlled by the Publishers.

Time that the Media professionals did their bit n this assault on Freedom on the Fourth estate.

This issue is more serious than Murdoch’s Phone hacking.

The online world and digital file locker services in particular are still reeling from the Thursdaytakedown of Megaupload and the arrest of the site’s staff. Acting at the behest of U.S. requests/orders, servers around the world were taken offline and those who ran the site were arrested in a case U.S. authorities have deemed the “Mega Conspiracy”.

This afternoon, went all but dark:

Filesonic, one of the Internet’s leading cyberlocker services, has taken some drastic measures following the Megaupload shutdown and arrests last week. In addition to discontinuing its affiliates rewards program and not yet paying accrued money to members, the site has disabled all sharing functionality, leaving users only with access to their own files.

Filesonic taking this step on its own at least spares users what would could have been the Megaupload-esque eventuality: loss of all their data, even if it was personal and perfectly legal. Megaupload users with legitimate data have been left out in the cold by the U.S. government and look to remain there for the foreseeable future.

Even though Megaupload was a Hong Kong-based site, that was not enough to spare it the long arm of the law – lobbied and paid for by large “content creators” back stateside. While fear of repercussions has not been listed as the official reasoning for neutering the site – there has as of yet been no official announcement – that seems to be the best theory working at the moment:

While there has been no official explanation from the site as to why the above actions were taken, all eyes are turned towards events of the last week – the closure of Megaupload and the arrest of its founder and management team.

Like Megaupload, Filesonic appears to based in Hong Kong and it’s clear that the authorities there already worked with the US government to shut down Kim Dotcom’s operations and seize his assets there. Filesonic is also believed to have some US-based servers.

Back on the Megaupload front, more details from the 72-page indictment continue to trickle out as it is poured over by tech sites. Feeling a rather lofty sense of self-importance for who they are and what they do, “content creators” were apparently rather upset that the uploading of infringing work wasn’t dealt with as swiftly as child pornography:

The Blackout Details.

Two new laws proposed by US legislators, the Stop Online Piracy Act and Protect IP Act, have been attracting a very negative reaction from the web community over the past couple of months, which is today culminating in a day of protests. Aiming to curtail copyright infringement on the web by giving the US government unprecedented new powers, both SOPA and PIPA have been rejected as overreaching and unhelpful laws that cannot coexist with a free and open internet.

The most outspoken protester of the bills today will be Wikipedia, whose English site will be going dark for the full 24 hours on January 18th, starting at midnight ET. It’s also joined by Reddit, which will replace its usual “glorious, user-curated chaos” with a message noting its opposition to SOPA and PIPA, accompanied by links to more information about the bills and suggested ways to express your own dissatisfaction with them. Reddit will not be offering its regular service between the hours of 8AM ET and 8PM ET, which is also when Mozilla will be redirecting the and English webpages to a similar “action page” inviting users of its software to voice their concern. The Firefox landing page will also be altered to raise awareness. Finally, Google’s search homepage is partaking in the protest by blacking out the Google logo, voicing the company’s opposition to SOPA, and including a link for more information.”

If the only place you get your news is from the Sunday talk shows, you would not have been informed in the slightest today about the political and technological battle over the Stop Online Piracy Act last week. Yes, there was a huge primary yesterday that completely up-ended the Republican contest, but you’d figure a powerful people-powered protest resulting in some of the biggest and most visited websites either blacking out or using their resources to raise awareness of the bill would garner at least a brief discussion today.

The only exception was Howard Kurtz, who did his due diligence bringing up the conflicts of interest inherent in the media’s coverage of SOPA and how some networks were better at disclosing such conflicts than others. However, Kurtz only brought this up at the tail end of Reliable Sources for about two minutes, so if you weren’t paying close attention, you might have missed it.

And it’s not just the Sunday shows. On Wednesday, the day of the blackout, none of the primetime shows on MSNBC and Fox News brought up SOPA or the blackout at all except for Rachel Maddow. It’s honestly embarrassing. Yes, it’s awful and/or hilarious how the rest of the Republicans are going after Mitt Romney for being a wealthy venture capitalist. And who knew that Newt Gingrich had marital issues?

But if your argument defending these hosts is “Oh, well they probably had more important issues to cover!” how is it that Lawrence O’Donnell found time to talk about ModernFamilyFuckGate but not the blackout? I completely agree with his position on profanity, but when in the editorial process did they decide “Internet freedom is good, but ABC primetime programming is just a little better”?


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