Popular Internet Forum Reddit Plans Blackout to Protest SOPA January 18; Others to Follow-Including Us (Updated)

sopa-logo2It’s official. Reddit has announced on January 18th it will shut down the massive, international message board and news aggregator service. Reddit it will replace it’s site with a message informing visitors about how proposed Internet censorship legislation like SOPA or PIPA could be used to shut down sites across the Internet without due process. Reddit will be replaced for the day with links to information about SOPA and a live stream of that day’s House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform hearing to “examine the potential impact of Domain Name Service (DNS) and search engine blocking on American cyber-security, jobs and the Internet community.”

The blackout is scheduled for January 18th, 2012, from 8am–8pm EST (1300–0100 UTC). Blog.Reddit explains:

“Congress will likely pass the Protect IP Act (in the Senate) or the Stop Online Piracy Act (in the House), and then the President will probably sign it into law. There are powerful forces trying to censor the Internet, and a few months ago many people thought this legislation would surely pass. However, there’s a new hope that we can defeat this dangerous legislation.”

How big is Reddit? Alexa, a web information company that measures Internet traffic and ranks sites accordingly, ranks Reddit as #115 globally. At the time of this writing, Bank of America has an Alexa rank of #117, Wal-Mart is at #123, Best Buy is #154, and Fox News weighs in at #161. Alex monitors traffic for the top 10 million web sites.

Hacktivist group Anonymous has Tweeted their support and will follow suit. Cheezburger, Inc. (the company behind Lolcats, the FAIL blog, and The Daily What, among others) announced it will join operation #SOPAblackout as well. Wikipedia founder Jimbo Wales has personally said he was “all in favor” of the blackout, and that “it would be great if [Wikipedia] could act quickly to coordinate with Reddit.” The Wikipedia Foundation is still debating this issue at the time of this writing. Update: Wikipedia will join the blackout.

Update: Game developers Mojang (Minecraft), Red 5 (Firefall), and gaming news site Destructiod have decided to to join the internet blackout as well.

GrowingUpOtaku.com will be joining this protest. While nowhere near as large as the major players, our voice will be heard. We believe it is our duty as good netizens to speak out in opposition to this sort of legislation that will, in the words of Google co-founder Sergey Brin, “put us on a par with the most oppressive nations in the world.”

This site will be prefaced with a black screen containing a link to contact your representatives. The front page will be reduced to a single post re-affirming GUO’s stance on this issue. Furthermore, no updates will be posted on either our Twitter or Facebook accounts for the date of January 18.

Thank you for your attention in this matter,

  • Michael Krutzler (Founder, Editor, Writer)
  • Elizabeth Krutzler (Consultant, Proofreader)
  • The Great One (Feature Columnist, Writer)
  • Bob Collings (Writer)

No comments :

Post a Comment