Senator to filibuster anti-internet legislation using the internet


A democratic senator has pledged to fillibuster the Protect IP act should it end up on the Senate floor. To make his point, though, Sen. Ron Wyden (D – OR), won’t turn to a dictionary or a phonebook. He’ll be reading the names of citizens who have entered them on his website against the legislation, scoring some irony points, along with the votes of first-ammendment-loving Oregonians.

Raw Story spoke with someone at the senator’s office, who filled them in on the strategy.

“He will do a standing filibuster, but at this point, we don’t necessarily have the votes to sustain his filibuster,” the aide continued. “Our goal is to continue to slow down this process and continue to educate members of Congress on why [the Protect IP Act is] the wrong approach.”

The legislation, pushed forward largely by the entertainment industry, which has lost millions of dollars in revenue to piracy, would heavily restrict online activity in the U.S., critics say. The senator’s website gives this brief:

The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the PROTECT IP Act (PIPA) would ruin so much of what’s best about the Internet: They will give the government and corporations new powers to block Americans’ access to sites that are accused of copyright infringement, force sites like YouTube to go to new lengths to police users’ contributions, and put people in prison for streaming certain content online.

CNet has a good rundown of SOPA and its predicted effects, as well as its differences from the Protect IP act including:

Protect IP targeted only domain name system providers, financial companies, and ad networks–not companies that provide Internet connectivity.

Because SOPA is broader, even some companies who liked, or at least weren’t vocally opposed to, the Senate bill aren’t exactly delighted with the House version.

“Verizon continues to look at SOPA, and while it’s fair to say that we have concerns about the legislation, we are working with congressional staff to address those concerns,” a spokesman told us last week.

Tim McKone, AT&T’s executive vice president of federal relations, said that “we have been supportive of the general framework” of the Senate bill. But when it comes to SOPA, all AT&T would say is that it is “working constructively with Chairman Smith and others toward a similar end in the House.”

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