Kudos to Congressman Jim Langevin for being the first of Rhode Island's Congressional delegation to voice opposition to the proposed Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA). Last Friday Langevin voiced his concerns about the effect the bill would have on the "security and openness of the Internet." Langevin told politico.com's "Politico Morning Tech" that the bill “would interfere with efforts to increase transparency and security online by allowing U.S. companies to actively seek to shut down other companies’ websites, without court order or government involvement, while undermining initiatives like DNSSEC that help increase trust online.”
SOPA is pitting the entertainment communities against the technology communities. The proposed bill attempts to stop rogue offshore websites that steal and copy American content (movies, music, etc.) by permitting the Attorney General to obtain a court order requiring Internet Service Providers (such as Comcast or Cox) to prevent access to a website within five days. Proponents say the bill is necessary to protect U.S. intellectual property against infringement by foreign websites. Opponents argue that the bill violates the First Amendment, and will "cripple the Internet."
Hearings on SOPA are expected to resume this month.