After I posted my “going dark” notice last night, I received a comment on that post stating how surprised that person was that, as I writer, I could support such a protest. I want to post my response comment here, so you’re all clear on just why I did.
I can see your perspective, and, not only do I empathize, it’s also a very real concern of mine as I’m trying to make it as a writer. It’s not easy, and we don’t need things like internet piracy making it that much more difficult. So, let me state that I do NOT support internet piracy whatsoever, and “piracy is okay” is ABSOLUTELY not the statement I’m trying to get across here.
The Protect IP Act is designed to block that sort of thing, but only through internet providers. Meaning, download sites will still be available through their IP addresses, which aren’t very difficult to find. It also gives license to companies to sue websites they “feel” aren’t doing their censoring well enough, leading to websites/businesses/and free content to be shut down. One misplaced keyword, and sites that host web comics, free fiction, or free art can be blocked and removed. That would bankrupt dozens of artists and writers just within my own circle. A lot of the content that I support (comics, for instance) are free to access, but they make their money in merchandise and advertising–if they lose their websites, their funding is cut off.
Another thing PIPA allows is the license for government and corporations to fiddle with the registries of the internet itself (domain names and security features), which compromises security on the sites you may be registered to. Most of my advertising and plugging are done through Facebook and Twitter, and that’s really not a comfort to me at all.
Wikipedia would be a huge target. One of the web’s most popular resources for making people smarter is definitely something that I feel needs to stick around. =P
I hope this clarifies things a bit. I really don’t want people to think that, by supporting the blackout, I’m in favor of piracy and illegal downloading. I respect writers and artists and their varying means of obtaining income and building their careers. I just feel that the SOPA/PIPA situation is not the proper way to go about things. I didn’t mean any offense by it.
If anyone has any questions, please feel free to comment or email me at gogglesandlace-at-gmail.com.