CES 2012: CEA Prez. Blasts "Copyright Extremists", Stop Online Piracy Act
January 10, 2012 3:50 PM
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Gary Shapiro pulls no punches in alleging federal bribery, anti-business politics
At a Tuesday morning Qualcomm Inc. (
) keynote of the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show Gary Shapiro, President of the Consumer Electronics Association, did not waste much time in getting down to business, talking about serious issues.
Alluding to the
upcoming Orwellian "Stop Online Piracy Act"
), a visibly furious Mr. Shapiro commented, "[SOPA is championed by] politicians who are proudly unfamiliar with how the internet works, but who are well familiar with favors from well-heeled copyright extremists."
The sharp criticism drew a thunderous applause from the pro-technology audience.
Indeed Mr. Shapiro is on the money in this case. According to extensive research, anti-streaming lobbyists have engaged in a
sweeping bribery scheme
that paid for approximately 10 percent of
active Senators' total combined election costs.
SOPA's current form, being debated by Congress would be a federal death sentence for internet business and the American economy, Under the proposed law any site on the internet found to contain links to infringing content could be taken down for up to weeks at a time. This means, in essence that any online news site, any e-commerce site, any site that takes user content of any kind could easily be permanently destroyed by malicious posts -- posts that the site itself did not author or endorse.
Meanwhile the offices of members of Congress have been
found to be actively pirating
the content that they hope to
imprison the lowly proles for
Mr. Shapiro, a veteran of two decades in the tech industry, recently published the book
The Comeback: How Innovation Will Restore the American Dream
. He remains very active in the politics side of technology. He serves on the
Advisory Committee to the Congressional Internet Congress
Mr. Shapiro voiced support for the OPEN Act, an alternative proposal by
Rep. Darrell Issa
, R-Calif., and
Sen. Ron Wyden
, D-Ore. The
forcement of Digital Trade Act ("The OPEN Act") removes much of SOPA's most sweeping federal power grab efforts, such as the link-related takedowns. While the OPEN Act has its flaws and detractors, clearly the internet industry likes it a lot better than SOPA. The propsal is
Google Inc. (
), Facebook, and Twitter.
A draft of the open act is available
Mr. Shapiro concluded, "In the movie
, Gordon Gecko said 'Greed is good.' Well, I believe change is good."
All images © of Jason Mick and DailyTech LLC.
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RE: Final Act
1/11/2012 8:24:40 PM
Oh yeah, they could have went down those roads but to them it is a risk and they're reluctant to deviate from the methods that have been making them billions of dollars each year. I don't think they're going to change until they no longer have an option to bribe politicians or abuse the legal system.
The problem isn't only that these big conglomerates are headed by scared old men who don't want to give up their old ways; they are most likely financially tied to people and organizations not in the entertainment industry who have strong influence over the direction of these entities. I don't think that all individuals involved with these media companies are evil and self-serving, but I do think that the majority of them in managerial positions quickly get swept up in these companies' exploitative "corporate culture", and are not really able to do much to change the status quo.
On a side note, it would be interesting if someone did an in depth "follow the money" type of investigation to see just how badly these greed-driven corporate interests have infected the US political and judicial systems.
"When an individual makes a copy of a song for himself, I suppose we can say he stole a song." -- Sony BMG attorney Jennifer Pariser
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