FYI, there will be a major outage of services on the internet starting “soon”. Depending on where you are in the world, it will be in the next couple of days.
Why? Well, the folks who are paranoid about content and want to assert their monopoly rights over it (and would just LOVE to do away with all “fair use” doctrine and the exemption for ‘teachers’ too – both of which let me do most of what I do) are pushing the US Congress to make it a criminal offense for a SITE to have someone else publish something that someone, somewhere, held to be their copyright.
At one time they tried to hold the internet service providers liable for any content published by anyone. That means that if Wiki, or WordPress, or just about any OTHER hosting site had ONE person put up ONE thing that was not validated as properly licensed, that SITE could be hit with penalties for the ‘crime’. This was to be a big change from then current US law which hold it was the PERSON who put up the stuff without proper license who is at fault. Lucky for us, that one got quashed in court ( IIRC ).
The latest one is due to yet another push. A push to require blocking entire sites by service providers if the recording industry decides to sue them and / or gets a court order supporting their claim.
In protest, many sites are going to shutdown for a day ( in their opinion, to demonstrate the impact of the law…)
Online encyclopaedia Wikipedia will shut down for 24 hours tomorrow to protest against US piracy laws, which are backed by the music and film industries but rigorously opposed by internet companies.
The Stop Online Piracy Act and Protect IP Act will force internet service providers to block non-US websites that offer pirated content if served with a court order.
Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales announced the planned global block-out of the site’s English pages on Twitter this morning, after first raising the idea on Monday.
You can be assured that shortly after non-US sites are done, they will be back with the ‘precedent’ to demand the same be done to US sites.
Never mind that such blocking will just force a whole lot more folks to learn the tricks and tools to bypass such filters and train entire generations in how to make VPN (Virtual Private Network) tunnels to remote ‘anonymizer’ sites. (On second thought, maybe it would be a GOOD thing… training a whole new generation of hackers from the moment of their first music download…)
Never mind that I can set up my own Domain Authority and make my own “dark network” and put the whole thing inside encryption (out of sight, out of mind?) and just keep on sharing with like minded folks.
No, the idiots-that-be think that THEY are in power (or can buy it from Congress…). They think that THEY have real control. They don’t. They have INFLUENCE, and even then only on the less technically connected. ( You don’t need to know how to do this stuff, you just need to be connected with someone who does..) And as we all know, folks who smell just a tiny bit of power begin to dream of invading Poland, and then think Russia will be easy… ( W.W.II reference, for anyone too young to know that bit of history…)
So, be advised:
Many of my pages use graphics from places like the Wiki Media library. Those pages will be broken. I’ve quoted and Australian news article, as I’m not sure what’s going to happen to US news. I’m also not planning a whole lot of ‘new stuff’ for the next couple of days until we see where all this ends up.
Welcome to a Brave New World…
Mr Wales said the block-out would run from midnight US Eastern Daylight Time on Wednesday to midnight the next day (4pm – 4pm AEST).
“Student warning! Do your homework early. Wikipedia protesting bad law on Wednesday!” he tweeted.
An estimate by digital analysts comScore puts the English site’s daily visitors at an average of 25 million globally. But Mr Wales said the site’s traffic could blow out as a result of the black-out’s publicity.
I heard on the news (Fox or CNBC) that other companies were joining the ‘movement’…