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Print 57 comment(s) - last by nocturne_81.. on Nov 23 at 3:28 PM

Due process would be replaced by guilt by accusation, with taxpayers and internet firms paying the bill

Near the end of the 15th century, the Catholic monarchy in Spain established a tribunal court, whose purpose was ostensibly to ferret out and prosecute Protestants, Muslims, and Jews.  Townspeople were encouraged to turn in their neighbors in exchange for leniency.  The operating presumption was that the accused were guilty, and had to prove their innocence.

That concept of guilty until proven innocent is exactly the sort of principle that America's polticians are looking to embrace with pending legislation.  The U.S. House Judiciary Committee is currently in the process of debating the Stop Online Piracy Act [SOPA].  The full text is available here [PDF].

I. Guilty Until Proven Innocent -- Foreign Websites

The act contains a hodgepodge of punitive measures ostensibly designed to cut down on piracy.  In this first piece in our series on the bill, we examine Sec. 102 which officially aims to crack down on funding and access to foreign websites with infringing content.  

Basically here's how the action will work:
  1. The U.S. Attorney General's Office states a belief that a site may be in infringement (possibly through a complaints process -- the bill does not specify a source of indentification, only the criteria for identification).
  2. The site is effectively presumed guilty by the U.S. government.
  3. As preliminary punishment/"justice" U.S. Attorney General's office sends a notice to ISPs, web search companies, and advertising firms informing them of the supposed violation.
  4. Those firms have 5 days to comply with the order and block access/funding to the site.
  5. If they do not comply, they must spend money in legal costs proving the technical infeasibility to the court.
  6. Likewise the supposed infringing site must pay for legal costs to prove its innocence to the U.S. Attorney General's office to remove the preemptive punishment.
Again the origin of these sweeping preliminary actions is poorly specified in the bill (read the text on pg. 10-11).

Readers should be aware, preliminary injunctions are nothing new, but they're increasingly being abused by corporations and federal entities to avoid the hassles of due proccess.  The bill's language suggests a DMCA-like clearinghouse process may be in the works. The bill does not mandate any of the typical requirements for a preliminary injunction, such as official court hearings.

On the ISP crackdown:

...A service provider shall take technically feasible and reasonable measures designed to prevent access by its subscribers located within the United States to the foreign infringing site (or portion thereof) that is subject to the order, including measures designed to prevent the domain name of the foreign infringing site (or portion thereof) from resolving to that domain name’s Internet Protocol address. Such actions shall be taken as expeditiously as possible, but in any case within 5 days after being served with a copy of the order, or within such time as the court may order....

On the crackdown on search results:

...A provider of an Internet search engine shall take technically feasible and reasonable measures, as expeditiously as possible, but in any case within 5 days after being served with a copy of the order, or within such time as the court may order, designed to prevent the foreign infringing site that is subject to the order, or a portion of  such site specified in the order, from being served as a direct hypertext link...

On the advertising crackdown:

...An Internet advertising service that contracts to provide advertising to or for the foreign infringing site....shall take technically feasible and reasonable measures, as expeditiously as possible, but in any case within 5 days after being served with a copy of the order...prevent its service from providing advertisements to or relating to the foreign infringing site that is subject to the order or a portion of such site specified in the order...

This action will come from the U.S. Attorney General:

The authority granted the Attorney General under subparagraph (A)(i) shall be the sole legal remedy to enforce the obligations...

And the presumed guilty must prove their innocence to prevent permanent punishment:

—Relief under this subsection shall be proper if the court finds that— the foreign Internet site subject to the order is no longer, or never was, a foreign infringing site; or...

The bill tries to placate ISPs/advertisers/search firms with sections like:

NO DUTY TO MONITOR.—An internet advertising service shall be considered to be in compliance with clause (i) if it takes action described in that clause with respect to accounts it has as of the date on which a copy of the order is served, or as of the date on which the order is amended under subsection (e).

For ISPs this is less damaging.  ISPs simply ban the infringing domain.  The domain isn't paying them anything, though there may be customer lawsuits.  The Bill grants immunity to the ISP if it complies with the injunction, so it basically has no damage other than reputation.

For search firms it's more troublesome as sites may be delisted then relisted causing chaos.  And web crawlers and other softbots will have to be modified ($$) to avoid the banned sites.  

And for advertisers (whom most search firms are), it's the worst of all.  They lose a paying client, and are unlikely to recoup that lost revenue, even if the client proves its innocence.

Google Buillding
Companies like Google will be left paying the bill for the cost of implementing service bans and defending themselves in court against illegitimate bans and/or claims that they aren't complying fast enough. [Source: TechFreep.com]

Important things to consider here:
  • Actions will be destructive to American companies, including search providers and advertising providers.
  • The process by which potentially offending sites are initially collected is not defined.
  • The U.S. taxpayers are paying for this enforcement.
II. Guilty Until Proven Innocent -- Who's Wants You to Pay the Bill

SOPA would serve as a great expansion of federal authority over the internet.  The Attorney General would be taxed with leading the inquisition against potential infringers, a costly duty in time and money.

To do this they will have to:

A. Raises taxes to support new enforcement employees.

and/or

B. Enlist the aid of industry affiliates who will serve as government proxies, identifying abuse.

Based on the precedent set by the Attorney General's office regarding the enforcement to the Digital Millenium Copyright Act, it seems relatively certain that the latter possibility will at least hold true.  

The issue therein is that media industry affiliates have already essentially admitted to abusing the DMCA, admitting that they requested takedowns on contents that they used computer scripts to identify, without actually bothering to have a human evaluate their validity.

The following Representatives sponsored the bill:
Lamar Smith (R-TX) [house.gov] *
John Conyers (D-MI) [house.gov]
Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) [house.gov]
Howard L. Berman (D-CA) [house.gov]
Tim Griffin (R-AR) [house.gov]
Elton Gallegly (R-CA) [house.gov]
Theodore E. Deutch (D-FL) [house.gov]
Steve Chabot (R-OH) [house.gov]
Dennis Ross (R-FL) [house.gov] *
Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) [house.gov]
Mary Bono Mack (R-CA) [house.gov]
Lee Terry (R-NE) [house.gov]
Adam B. Schiff (D-CA) [house.gov]
Mel Watt (D-NC) [house.gov]
John Carter (R-TX) [house.gov] *
Karen Bass (D-CA) [house.gov]
Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) [house.gov]
Peter King (R-NY) [house.gov]
Mark E. Amodei (R-NV) [house.gov]
Tom Marino (R-PA) [house.gov]
Alan Nunnelee (R-MS) [house.gov]
John Barrow (D-GA) [house.gov]
Steve Scalise (R-LA) [house.gov] *
Ben Ray Luján (D-NM) [house.gov]
William L. Owens (D-NY) [house.gov]

Note that four prominent Tea Party Representatives have endorsed this sweeping and costly expansion of federal government.  

Lamar Smith (R)
Lamar Smith is among the Tea Party politicians sponsoring the bill to radically expand federal government, increasing the Department of Justice's regulation of the internet.
[Image Source: Boy Genius Report]

In total 25 Representatives sponsored the bill, with 15 Republicans and 10 Democrats supporting it.  This indicates that while the bill has some bipartisan support, that the party leaning most in favor of the federal expansion is the Republican Party, given that they're in a lesser 242-192 (~1.25:1) majority in the current 112th Congress, but represent a 15-10 (1.5:1) majority of the bill sponsors.

Prominent Tea Party presidential hopeful Ron Paul refused to sponsor the bill, which would be a compromise to his premise of reducing federal government.

In our next piece we will break down the Sec. 103 of the bill, which imposes a similar "guilty until proven innocent" on U.S. websites.

Source: U.S. House of Representatives



Comments     Threshold


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The Problem
By JonnyDough on 11/16/2011 7:31:34 PM , Rating: 2
The problem with so much legal, political, and technical jargon is that its difficult for the commoner to understand. Many of us fail to know our rights, the constitution is written in dated language and many don't even understand their basic rights under that. I imagine that many politicians vote for or against bills that they don't truly research or understand either. I surely hope that they recieve some sort of common language briefs for bills which CLEARLY outline what all is included and not included within a bill. If not, perhaps we need a bill that makes that happen.




RE: The Problem
By Motoman on 11/16/2011 8:24:47 PM , Rating: 5
...what we need is a bill that outlaws politics, and instead requires rational thought.


RE: The Problem
By FastEddieLB on 11/16/2011 8:31:36 PM , Rating: 5
The problem with any government that elects its officials is that people are inherently irrational, emotional creatures who act on what feels good rather than what they actually think (they follow their hearts.) On the other hand, the non-elected government officials aren't exactly immune to this problem either.

That said, what we really need is schools that teach kids how to think rather than what to think.


RE: The Problem
By kattanna on 11/17/2011 11:34:19 AM , Rating: 5
quote:
That said, what we really need is schools that teach kids how to think rather than what to think.


there is an institution whose very purpose is just that.

its called the home

but all to often those who reside there fail to do what is needed to ensure that learning.


RE: The Problem
By Mint on 11/17/2011 12:31:47 PM , Rating: 1
You think the purpose of the home is to instill rational thought?

That would be great, but it simply isn't the case. The home is is simply a place to live. Anything we get beyond that for learning, morals, etc is just a bonus that came down from the previous generation, but it's nothing that we can rely on or pass off responsibility to. The home will and always will operate on human nature.

Schools are the only place that a society can teach rational thought to its members, and even there we don't want 100% rational thought (e.g you don't want people to steal when the benefits outweigh the consequences). The rest of the world is wrought with companies and people trying to manipulate your thought process to serve them in one way or another.


RE: The Problem
By Dr of crap on 11/17/2011 8:53:33 AM , Rating: 1
Yea, LOL, like that might happen.
Political language is vague for a reason.
Because it's politics.
Never commit to anything! LOL!


RE: The Problem
By webstorm1 on 11/17/2011 9:56:31 AM , Rating: 3
First you have to get all the religion out of politics - since we're talking about impossible pipe dreams.


RE: The Problem
By JasonMick (blog) on 11/16/2011 8:30:41 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
The problem with so much legal, political, and technical jargon is that its difficult for the commoner to understand. Many of us fail to know our rights, the constitution is written in dated language and many don't even understand their basic rights under that.

Absolutely.

Now I do have to say the Constitution is far more readable than many current laws. I think honestly the language of politics hints at its purpose. The Constitution -- particularly the Bill of Rights was explicit and concise. It reads like the writer wants the citizen to understand what's going on.

By contrast many modern bills are littered with ambiguous passages, and shellacked with a thick coat of political jargon which transform sentences into paragraphs and paragraphs into pages. What this reads like in many cases is a concerted effort by someone -- beat it Congress or whomever they contract to write the bill -- to pull the wool over the public's eyes and disguise the mounds of special interest handouts, erosions of civil liberties, and worse. It's as if the authors don't want the citizen to read or understand the laws.

quote:
urely hope that they recieve some sort of common language briefs for bills which CLEARLY outline what all is included and not included within a bill. If not, perhaps we need a bill that makes that happen.

I think this is a decent idea, but it's a bit problematic.

The summary given to politicians would entirely be colored by whether their party (and their corporate sponsors) wants the bill passed or not.

For example if I wanted the SOPA passed, I would write:
Sec. 102 and 103 defines how the Attorney General's office can fight piracy and protect U.S. media companies.

If I wanted it rejected I would write:
Sec. 102 and 103 institutes a process in which the Attorney General presumes guilt on foreign and domestic websites via an ambiguous identification process. Orders are then given to force American businesses to enact punishments against the guilty party, regardless of the cost to them. The guilty party must prove its innocence or it will continue to be punished. The bill shall require raising taxes to finance this large federal government expansion.

You can always shine a turd of a bill, so to speak making it sound like it's doing something noble even if it's really abusive and unconstitutional.


RE: The Problem
By Omega215D on 11/16/2011 10:07:13 PM , Rating: 2
We also have this little nugget:

http://yro.slashdot.org/story/11/11/15/1821238/doj...

It's a been a very busy month at Slashdot with all this new legal garbage coming about.


RE: The Problem
By Omega215D on 11/16/2011 10:11:16 PM , Rating: 2
RE: The Problem
By tastyratz on 11/17/2011 9:26:13 AM , Rating: 2
Jason,
I just wanted to thank you for providing a list of contact links to each representative who has their name attached to the bill. I could spend a lot of time reading comments, but instead I think I will attempt to do something about this by contacting them.
I would also like to see if you would include this link in your article:
https://www.change.org/petitions/kill-the-bill-hr3...

This is a petition to kill the bill that was started.
Thank you


RE: The Problem
By Ringold on 11/17/2011 10:56:45 AM , Rating: 2
I'm at least going to e-mail the "Tea Party" Republicans. How in all the rings of hell did they get from small-government activism to Chinese democracy? Did they get lost and take a left on Stalin Blvd or what?


RE: The Problem
By mcnabney on 11/17/11, Rating: 0
RE: The Problem
By croc on 11/17/2011 4:30:46 PM , Rating: 2
Look at a EULA... (You know, the one that's in the box that is unreturnable if opened...) Can you understand it? Now look at any recent law. Now realize that they are both written by lawyers.


RE: The Problem
By mmatis on 11/17/2011 8:34:28 AM , Rating: 3
The Constitution is written in English, not legalese. It says what it means, and it means what it says. The REAL problem is that the legal swill running this country are treating it as a "living" document whose meaning changes at their whim. They can't be bothered to go to the trouble of amending it per the proscribed process, so they "interpret" it to mean whatever THEY want. So much more efficient from their point of view. And "Law Enforcement" grovel before them and do WHATEVER they are told.

The upcoming civil war will change things somewhat.


RE: The Problem
By Natch on 11/17/2011 9:17:15 AM , Rating: 2
The worst part of this is that the Department of "Justice", who could not even keep track of their gun running sting program "Fast and Furious", will be in charge? I don't know about anyone else, but I'm starting to think this Attorney General can't keep track of his own socks, let alone the nations's laws! With all the denial going on in DoJ right now, I wouldn't trust any one of them to handle something as dangerous as this proposed law!!


RE: The Problem
By mmatis on 11/17/2011 7:53:28 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, they kept EXCELLENT track of those guns. When Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was murdered in Arizona last year, the FBI quickly knew that one of the three weapons seized at the scene pointed directly at ONE OF THEIR OWN. As a result, it quickly "disappeared". It's not clear if it was destroyed, or merely hidden. But the FBI agents had NO problems with disposing of a weapon used at the murder of a Federal Agent. And since they say the other two were NOT used to kill him...


RE: The Problem
By nocturne_81 on 11/23/2011 3:28:44 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The problem with so much legal, political, and technical jargon is that its difficult for the commoner to understand.
Actually, the problem is quite the opposite... The law is written by those whop have absolutely no understanding of how the net actually works (remember that senator from Alaska..? the internet, it's not like a truck.. it's like a series of pipes! lmao).

Though the DMCA is not a good example of this (it's very concise -- obviously verbatim from the media interests), there's dozens of other great examples... Take, the law that makes spam illegal (seriously?), or the law mandating document right protections to limit leaks, or the multitudes of laws that attempted to make online advertising illegal.

Just another example of our gov't trying to control something that they have no control over.


By Beenthere on 11/17/2011 12:10:19 AM , Rating: 1
I'm all for fining pirates $10,000 per copy plus mandatory prison time for mass distribution, i.e. more than 100 copies. I'm also for making ISPs filter copyright protected works. I'm also in favor of prosecuting ISPs who allow SPAM to be sent from their servers.

And while we're at it let's throw CEOs in prison who habitually violate anti-trust laws for profit. Start with Bill Gates and Paul Otellini and don't stop until they are all in prison for 30 years or more.

While you're at it, prosecute every criminal on Corruption Hill, DC who takes bribe money or authors legislation that defrauds or fleeces the American public.

Prison time should do all of these criminals good.




By bigboxes on 11/17/2011 1:21:35 AM , Rating: 2
But seriously, how does the latest AMD processors facilitate file sharing? Because sharing is caring!™


By NicodemusMM on 11/17/2011 4:38:37 AM , Rating: 2
I think the only issue I have with this is "making ISPs filter copyright protected works." The ISPs will claim it adds an additional expense and pass that on to the consumer two-fold while at the same time claiming that they're not able to expand their infrastructure due to this new overhead.

As far as a law that will make it possible to "prosecute every criminal on Corruption Hill, DC who takes bribe money or authors legislation that defrauds or fleeces the American public"... good luck getting them to write and pass any law that will prevent them from making money or potentially land them in jail.


By masamasa on 11/17/2011 10:58:24 AM , Rating: 2
Time to get rid of the bottom feeders, squatters, and all the other junk on the net.


By iceonfire1 on 11/17/2011 4:26:48 PM , Rating: 2
No, dammit, we should just shoot the bastards. Or maybe start cutting off hands. That will make the world a less complicated place, right?


Sigh
By Quadrillity on 11/17/2011 7:33:26 AM , Rating: 4
quote:
Note that four prominent Tea Party Representatives have endorsed this sweeping and costly expansion of federal government.

These guys should be called "former" Tea Party members. The very premise of the TP is to bring the federal government back down to its originally intended level of restriction, power, and size. ANY person who calls themselves a TP member in one sentence and votes for the expansion of government in the next is a total sham!




RE: Sigh
By ClownPuncher on 11/17/2011 2:41:44 PM , Rating: 3
You expect most politicians to stick to their guns?


RE: Sigh
By Quadrillity on 11/17/2011 3:03:18 PM , Rating: 2
No, I expect the same song and dance until we have another civil war. Then maybe we can get public servants with term limits instead of self serving, constitution ignoring, career politicians/liars/thieves/thugs. I still say one of the largest problems is political parties and their nature to self serve. The corruption in this nation is overflowing, and it will catch up very soon. It's unfortunate to say, (and I swear I don't want this to happen) but a war is looming.


Make note, dear readers
By FastEddieLB on 11/16/2011 8:28:23 PM , Rating: 2
Every representative in support of this bill is showing their true colors as a great big fake who doesn't support the country they're supposed to be serving.




RE: Make note, dear readers
By rbuszka on 11/16/2011 11:06:56 PM , Rating: 3
No longer shall U.S. public policy on freedom of speech, press, and assembly lag behind our advanced Chinese brethren! No longer! (Should I begin celebrating Chairman Mao yet, or will that be next year?)


RE: Make note, dear readers
By TeXWiller on 11/18/2011 12:34:02 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
(Should I begin celebrating Chairman Mao yet, or will that be next year?
This will come after the Presidential Office is required to hire 9 official concubines for the Presidential use during various trips and other occasions. Positive discrimination will be applied.
They will be often seen traveling around the country with the president using the Presidential train. The new slogan for the Presidential Office: "Do like Mao, Be like Mao!"


Quickly and Quietly - Enemies Foreign and Domestic
By rbuszka on 11/16/2011 10:43:15 PM , Rating: 2
They will pass this bill just as quickly and as quietly as they ratified ACTA. This is the real government at work, the one that doesn't represent you, but represents the corporations. The revolution was not televised.

The enemies of the Constitution are in our halls of power, and have been for quite some time. This bill infringes on freedom of the press by eroding the definition of 'press', and infringes on the right to peacefully assemble. The onus is now on us, the American to make sure every one of this bill's sponsors pays for it with their job. There is no one left to defend the U.S. Constitution except for the American people.

Of course, you know what I want. Vote the scumbags out on their behinds en masse. Term limits now - limit the damage that can be done by incumbent career politicians who are bought and sold (see the 60 Minutes report last Sunday). But remember the movie Eagle Eye: the characters opted to defend the status quo and shut down Eagle Eye, rather than considering the machine's thought-provoking analysis of our political reality. The question is whether Congress will go too far this time and provoke the ire of the American people, who remain a force to be reckoned with when attacked.




By darckhart on 11/17/2011 1:33:28 AM , Rating: 2
Completely agree with your 1st and 2nd paragraphs.

Unfortunately, the American people, as of late, have shown themselves to be stupid and lazy, so I wouldn't put much faith into hoping they will rise and stand together. Stupid because they don't care to understand the implications and the consequences. Lazy because if they do understand, they don't care enough to do anything about it. Voting out isn't good enough because they're replaced with another partisan mouthpiece.


While undoubtedly disturbing
By stadisticado on 11/17/2011 4:07:53 AM , Rating: 2
I truly wonder how many of these representatives, from any political background, truly understand enough of the implications of this bill or if they were just shined on by companies and consultants that have a vested interest in continuing the litigation of internet content.

Not that this is a defense of them - rather just noting how truly tech illiterate I believe most of our politicians to be.




RE: While undoubtedly disturbing
By myhipsi on 11/17/2011 10:45:22 AM , Rating: 2
My take, most politicians just don't care as long as it lines their pockets and/or elevates their political career. Politicians and lawyers are destroying the country with unconstitutional legislation on a daily basis.


If this passes...
By GeekWithFire on 11/17/2011 9:48:21 AM , Rating: 4
If this passes, I would like to be the first to make the statement that the following sites may be in infringement:

www.riaa.com
www.house.gov
www.senate.gov
www.moveon.org




Lamar is no damned Tea Party politian
By blueaurora on 11/17/2011 7:15:11 AM , Rating: 2
One of the main creeds to being as conservative is by definition reducing the size of government. Even if he utilized the fervor that existed within the Tea Party to get elected it is obvious that he is no more from the Tea Party than a wolf is a sheep.




By Ringold on 11/17/2011 11:11:43 AM , Rating: 1
I think its time a libertarian movement separate itself out from the social conservatives and somewhat vague and full of parasites Tea Party groups. There can be no misunderstanding about libertarian ideas, they're pretty well established, so no politician could claim fealty merely for votes while doing things like this.


By Rukkian on 11/17/2011 11:07:26 AM , Rating: 2
I know why they do this, but it still makes no sense to rational, non corrupt people to be worrying about pirates in Asia (or anywhere else), when the country is going to heck. We cannot pay our bills, debt is skyrocketing, people are out of work everywhere, but what do they work on - putting increasing government regulation and red tape on something that will not be enforceable.

If a site gets blocked, they will just pop up with a new name a day (or hour) later, and then we start all over again. Thanks for the links to the congressmen sponsoring this. I just wish the American people would wake up and deal with the absolute corruption in the country on Corruption Hill.




It's Obvious
By zmatt on 11/17/2011 2:53:22 PM , Rating: 2
That the representatives are in the RIAA and MPAA's pocket. They are probably giving them big kickbacks to limit our rights. The thing is, this bill if passed would be a big issue for Google, who likely has a lot more money than them. So I wonder how many more representatives Google has paid to shoot it down. Of course that doesn't solve the source of our problem; the corpratocracy, but as long as we have equally powerful entities who are at odds we can play them off to our advantage.




By adiposity on 11/17/2011 2:59:43 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Prominent Tea Party presidential hopeful Ron Paul


Wait, wait. Is Ron Paul a Tea Partier? I don't think so.

To be fair, he championed many of the ideas held by the Tea Party, before it began. But to call him a "Tea Party presidential hopeful?"

I like Ron, but I'm no Tea Party.




What I got from this.
By tng on 11/18/2011 9:19:19 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
...A service provider shall take technically feasible and reasonable measures designed to prevent access by its subscribers located within the United States to the foreign infringing site (or portion thereof) that is subject to the order...
Just switch a couple of words here and you get this...
quote:
...A service provider shall take technically feasible and reasonable measures designed to prevent access by its subscribers located within China to the foreign infringing site (or portion thereof) that is subject to the order...
Sounds reasonable?




By nocturne_81 on 11/23/2011 3:23:04 PM , Rating: 2
Well, as I read this article, I must admit I am watching a tv show illegally (as far as the law is concerned)... Albeit, I still pay for a cable subscription I don't use -- it's just much easier to wait until the show pops up online, and I can watch it at my own convenience without having to fast forward through ads.

As such, I can completely understand the motives behind this.. But with DMCA, I can't see why it's necessary. I've already seen the majority of my fav filesharing sites switch from .com's and .net's to .eu or other foreign domains, so I can't help but think -- what gives the US the exclusive right to patrol the generic domains?

Likewise, every file-sharing/video-streaming already gives media companies free reign to delete any and all infringing content without any 'due process' or even having to prove that the complaining party actually holds the intellectual property involved in the complaint. The simple reason why it doesn't help is the sheer multitude of rls posters that continue to post and repost the infringing content.

Try all they can, any law they try is the equivalent of sticking a bandaid on a slit jugular artery... I just keep waiting until ICANN reminds the USA that we are indeed not the police force for the entire world.




.
By sprockkets on 11/17/2011 12:17:10 AM , Rating: 1
Lamar Smith is also a google hater.

http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2011/11/at...

He and his tea party idiots who don't get the internet can GFThemselves.

Love the pic btw.




When is the last time the House
By Reclaimer77 on 11/17/11, Rating: -1
RE: When is the last time the House
By yomamafor1 on 11/17/2011 12:57:32 AM , Rating: 2
The title clearly states,

quote:
Guilty Until Proven Innocent: U.S. House Proposes Internet Inquisition, Pt. I


RE: When is the last time the House
By Reclaimer77 on 11/17/11, Rating: -1
RE: When is the last time the House
By Fritzr on 11/17/2011 4:05:32 AM , Rating: 2
Yes you would think that the House is considering a new law after reading this article.

You might even start with that bias if you paid attention in school when they described the way the US government operates.

The procedure is in essence simple
1. A congressman or Senator writes a Bill for consideration by their House of Congress
2. The bill is then proposed to the House/Senate, usually after being considered by a committee whose job it is to prescreen new bills
3. A sponsor in the opposite Senate/House body proposes a version of the bill
4 The bill is then proposed to the Senate/House, usually after being considered by a committee whose job it is to prescreen new bills
5 IF BOTH houses of Congress pass their respective versions of the proposed bill THEN it is given over to another committee who writes a brand new bill that merges the two versions just passed.
6. The revised bill is then proposed to both the House and the Senate and if passed without further revision, presented to the President for a signature.

This bill is at step 1 or 2. Now is the time for the public to speak out & for the news media to tear it to pieces. If we wait until the President announces his decision about signing, then we have no say in what Congress does.


By blueaurora on 11/17/2011 7:20:48 AM , Rating: 2
Those media sources that have a bias obviously would word an article to flame the aggression of its audience into action. This article is no different.

Piracy is something that must be dealt with and no one has a good solution at this point. Until all these companies finally get everything in the cloud instead of in your hands there isn't much they can do.

Once the dark cloud rises.... its all over.


By yomamafor1 on 11/17/2011 10:16:48 AM , Rating: 2
Then one needs to go back to elementary school and relearn US Constitution and US history.

Plus:

quote:
The U.S. House Judiciary Committee is currently in the process of debating the Stop Online Piracy Act


The article clearly states that the Judiciary Committee is in the process of debating the SOPA, not the House itself. Anyone with 2 brain cells would know that this bill is far from being debated on the House floor.

I think you need to turn down your partisan reactionary response a bit.


RE: When is the last time the House
By bigboxes on 11/17/2011 1:18:27 AM , Rating: 3
You post more partisan crap than anyone! LOL


RE: When is the last time the House
By Reclaimer77 on 11/17/11, Rating: 0
RE: When is the last time the House
By n00bxqb on 11/17/2011 4:01:07 AM , Rating: 2
What difference does his supposed title or your lack of title make? Should a man's actions be defined by his title or should his title be defined by his actions?


By martin5000 on 11/17/2011 4:51:31 AM , Rating: 2
You've got to remember the international audience as well, I don't know the details of US politics, and its easy to be left with the impression this is something that is likely to happen (judging by the comments though it sounds like it never would).

This also works the other way around, there have been a few stories on here about crazy proposed laws in the UK, which really were just proposals by far left/right lobby groups, and they were portrayed on this website as if it were definitely going to happen.


RE: When is the last time the House
By FITCamaro on 11/17/11, Rating: 0
RE: When is the last time the House
By JasonMick (blog) on 11/17/2011 8:58:13 AM , Rating: 1
quote:
Signed something into law Jason? Oh yeah, they can't. It has to make it through the Senate and THEN be signed by the President.

FIND: "signed into law"
RESULTS: none

Guilty Until Proven Innocent: U.S. House Proposes Internet Inquisition, Pt. I

sort of principle that America's polticians are looking to embrace with pending legislation . The U.S. House Judiciary Committee is currently in the process of debating the Stop Online Piracy Act [SOPA].

Honestly I don't know how I can be more explicit than that. If you lack the reading comprehension to understand the law hasn't been passed based on that text, then it will probably be hard to understand the general information in the article as well.

For foreign readers, I apologize, American politics may seem confusing. But basically here's the process most bills go through:
1. One or more Senators or Representatives writes a bill (or their office writes the bill, more aptly).
2. The bill is debated by an appropriate subcommittee, e.g. in this case the House Judiciary Committee.
3. The committee votes for or against a final draft to be moved to the floor.
4. The rules committee decides on the rules for the debate of the bill.
5. General debate is held.
6. The general assembly that the bill was raised in (either the House or Senate) votes to approve or reject the bill.
7. The bill goes to the other assembly, who often times have developed their own version of the bill. Typically a second debate is held, then they vote on that bill.
8. A finalized version of the bill merging any changes is approved or overturned by BOTH the Senate and the House.
9. The bill goes to the president who either signs it into law or vetoes it.

Clearly we're at step 2, but the bill stands a very good chance of passing the House committee, given that Rep. Lamar Smith is chairman of the committee and should rally support (he's a sponsor of the bill).

Let's consider a scenario in which the bill will pass the general assembly.

Total House Representatives:
Republicans: 180 (41.4%)
Tea Party Republicans: 62 (14.3%)
Democrats: 192 (44.2%)

Total Senators:
Republicans: 43
Tea Party Republicans: 4
Independents: 2
Democrats: 51

Now let's consider the sponsorship ratio:
Republicans: 11 (44%)
Tea Party Republicans: 4 (16%)
Democrats: 10 (40%)

...and extend that to the minimum needed majority in the Senate, 51, assuming Lieberman (a strong proponent of stronger piracy legislation) votes for and Sanders votes against.
-I(1)
-----
50 votes needed
s:supporter o:opposer
50=T_s+R_s+D_s
0.43=D_s/(T_s+R_s+D_s) => 0=0.57D_s-0.43R_s-0.43T_s
0.16=T_s/(T_s+R_s+D_s) => 0=0.84T_s-0.16D_s-0.16T_s
0.44=R_s/(T_s+R_s+D_s) => 0=0.56R_s-0.44D_s-0.44T_s
51=D_s+D_o
43=R_s+R_o
4=T_s+T_o

D_s=24
R_s=25
T_s=1

Final Senate Vote:
I: 1 yea, 1 nay
R: 25 yea, 18 nay
T: 1 yea, 1 nay
D: 24 yea, 27 nay

passes

Passing those % along in house terms
Needed votes: 218
R: 110 yea, 70 nay
T: 16 yea, 46 nay
D: 92 yea, 100 nay

passes...

quote:
If this bill becomes law, it damn sure won't be because of Republicans, we have no majority. When's the last time ANYTHING from the House wasn't DOA under Obama's Senate? They block EVERYTHING.


Actually, as you see above, it's because the bill does have strong bipartisan support. My point was merely that more (R)s support it than (D)s, at least in terms of sponsorship. Given the relatively large list of sponsors, I think this is somewhat telling of general support within the parties. It shows that there is some support within the Democratic party and there's a lot of support within the Republican party to pass this Bill.

The President has already states his support for this kind of legislation...

http://www.dailytech.com/Obama+Administration+Anno...
http://www.dailytech.com/Obama+Conscripts+ISPs+as+...
http://www.dailytech.com/Report+AntiStreaming+Lobb...

...and clearly part of his party supports it, so he'd likely sign it.

quote:
And yet your article is a 100% Republican smear job, even though more than a few Democrats back the bill and it has to make it through the totally Democratically stacked Senate.

No, again you lack reading comprehension. I merely point out that the Republicans represent the majority of sponsors, but that there's a strong Democratic minority supporting the bill.

The Democratic minority support is as important to note as the Republican majority support, because it's what will possibly get this bill past the Senate.

In that regard we should probably be more worried about how the Democrats vote w.r.t. this measure than how the Democrats vote.

Again, the President has already said he wants this kind of legislation, so he likely will sign it into law.

I'm not trying to pick on anyone. I have no sacred cows or parties. I'm equal opportunity when it comes to analysis. I merely was stating the numbers -- I didn't include anything about Republicans in the title.

The only reason I highlight the Tea Party support is that I found it surprising given that this expands federal authority and costs something their party claims to be radically opposed to. Otherwise, the notation on the Democratic/Republican split is mere statistics.

You're being overly sensitive.


By JasonMick (blog) on 11/17/2011 9:00:29 AM , Rating: 2
EDIT:
*w.r.t. this measure than how the Democrats vote.

s/Democrats/Republicans/g


By TeXWiller on 11/18/2011 12:38:46 AM , Rating: 2
Thank you for the description of the US legislative process.


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