The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect IP Act (PIPA) represent the latest attacks by lawmakers and the old entertainment industry on the Internet. If you’ve ended up here, you likely know what SOPA is. In this case, you’ll want to head over to our Take Action page to contact the ESA or government officials. If not, I suggest reading an article or two and catching up. If passed, legislation like this may give private corporations the power to shut down websites with little oversight and few remedies for those targeted. In an effort to protect one form of speech, corporate owned intellectual properties, Congress is willing to silence many others. All content and content creators must be protected from these draconian attempts to silence them.
The games industry and the fans who love their games have a unique place in this argument. Video game companies have been more likely to adapt to changing technologies and to leverage them, improving both their business models and their product. As such, some gaming companies recognize that these bills endanger the very foundation that their businesses are built on. However, many other gaming companies have chosen actively to support SOPA, often through proxy organizations such as the Entertainment Software Association (ESA).
As concerns about SOPA have mounted, I’ve wanted to take some action to try and stop passage of this bill. However, it’s clear that corporate money is driving this bill forward, so I doubt whether lawmakers will be swayed by just a few letters from constituents. Therefore I propose that we target both the corporations supporting this bill and the lawmakers debating it. As gamers have shown in the past, acting together we can accomplish so much more than we can by ourselves. And so I’m imploring gamers to take action, contact the games companies you love and encourage them to take a stand against Internet censorship. Ask them to come out publicly against SOPA and PIPA. Petition the individual members of the ESA to have their organization reverse it’s support of SOPA. Then contact your representative to let them know how you feel.