Summary of Why SOPA Is a Bad Idea

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The Internet has enabled average citizens to become not just passive consumers of media but active producers. Spooked, the media industry is lobbying to limit your right to express yourself and create. Social media theorist Clay Shirky enlists your help in stopping bills like SOPA and PIPA from infringing on your rights. Although President Obama shelved these bills in early 2013, the media will keep pursuing restrictive legislation, says Shirky. getAbstract recommends this lecture to government representatives and American citizens who value due process.

About the Speaker

TED veteran Clay Shirky is a professor at New York University, a social media expert and an author.



Throughout the 20th century, the US media industries’ principal players wielded significant clout. But as analog recording equipment such as VCRs gained popularity, the media firms felt their power wane. They pleaded with Congress to intervene. So in 1992, Congress passed the Audio Home Recording Act, which allows individuals to copy and share copyrighted material, provided that they don’t profit from doing so. Unsatisfied with this measure, media companies continued to lobby Congress. In 1998, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act became law, ...

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