Some of the internet’s biggest sites, including Google, Facebook and Twitter, are said to be considering a blackout in protest at the controversial SOPA legislation currently being pushed in the US. Other companies believed to be considering such a protest include Amazon, Paypal, Wikipedia and Yahoo.
SOPA has caused great concern for many tech companies because the legislation threatens to make a website responsible for any copyright infringement committed by its users. For sites that rely upon user-generated content, this could be a huge problem. Critics argue that the special interests of the US entertainment industry are being placed before the freedom of websites to exist and before the freedom of expression of users.
Despite the potentially huge ramifications of SOPA, many people are still only vaguely aware of the bill. A blackout of most of the internet’s most successful sites would certainly change that. For more information about stopping SOPA, you can visit the Stop American Censorship site or the SOPA sub-reddit, or take a look at this Quora discussion for an alternative viewpoint.