Did the SOPA/PIPA Protest Prove to be a Success?

   By drodriguez  Jan 20, 2012

If you were among one of the 162 million who tried to visit Wikipedia on Wednesday you would have seen a dark screen explaining their 24-hour blackout in protest of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA).

The site has been restored since then, but a BBC report explains how Wikipedia still plans to actively protest these bills that promote federal censorship of the internet. Though we now understand internet access as a human right , bills like SOPA and PIPA could give federal government the power to limit what we can legally access on the internet.

People who visited Wikipedia during the 24-hour blackout were given a link to find and contact their local politicians regarding these bills. About 8 million people reportedly utilized these links to contact politicians. Google reports that they were able to bring more than 4.5 million signatures to a petition opposing the bills.

Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg also threw himself into the debate on Wednesday urging users to, “Tell your congressmen you want them to be pro-internet. We can't let poorly thought out laws get in the way of the internet's development. Facebook opposes Sopa and Pipa, and we will continue to oppose any laws that will hurt the internet.”

Since yesterday’s protests many lawmakers have withdrawn their initial support of SOPA and PIPA. CNN reports about the bill’s co-sponsor Florida Sen. Marco Rubio statement to withdraw his support. Sen. Rubio took his Facebook to explain why his position changed, writing, “I have decided to withdraw my support for the Protect IP Act. Furthermore, I encourage Senator Reid to abandon his plan to rush the bill to the floor. Instead, we should take more time to address the concerns raised by all sides, and come up with new legislation that addresses Internet piracy while protecting free and open access to the Internet.”

What do you think of the recent protests of SOPA and PIPA?

Do you think Wikipedia made the right move by going black for 24 hours?

Make a Comment

myfirstbaby by myfirstbaby | ROGERS, AR
Jan 24, 2012

I blacked my blog out and contacted my Local Congressman, etc... They have emailed me back saying they pulled their name as Cosponsor! I think it worked. Having major websited blacked out really helped our cause.. I believe that we DO have a voice. If we just use it!!

LivingHipToady by LivingHipToady | Knoxville, TN
Jan 24, 2012

Wikipedia absolutely did the right thing! My website went black as well. I posted about SOPA/PIPA the day before the protest and way too many of my friends had not heard about it yet. The protest was very efficient in raising some much needed awareness.

valeried312 by valeried312 | SODDY DAISY, TN
Jan 23, 2012

So many people signed online petitions, which may not amount to much - but our voice was definitely heard. It wasn't just Wikipedia who participated in the blackout - websites like wordpress.com, tumblr.com, and many others were "blacking out" in protest to the legislation. Thank goodness it got people's attention and congress took notice. It's about time they heard what WE had to say instead of just arguing with each other about what's best for us.

Tricias-List by Tricias-List | Millersville, MD
Jan 23, 2012

I totally believe that SOPA/PIPA had a BIG message sent to them by everyone who participated in the Blackout. I participated in the blackout myself. I think it was great move to show SOPA that while piracy is wrong,they were taking the punishment to an extreme level.The internet is for everyone and is not meant to be silenced,monopolized,or censured...at least not to the point that SOPA/PIPA were trying to take it. Thank you to everyone who helped in the blackout ... with your help ,we all made a statement !

zrenee by zrenee | Dacula, GA
Jan 22, 2012

agreed I got involved with this one, and I'm glad I did. We the people, made a difference!

ginabad by ginabad | MACUNGIE, PA
Jan 21, 2012

I do think it worked, for a bit, but I'm not sure that it won't come back stronger, with more money behind it! We need to stay vigilant that we keep pressure our Congress to let it go.

msfriendly by msfriendly | MONROE, WI
Jan 21, 2012

I think it got our lawmakers attention, but will they listen?

Mothermercury by Mothermercury | LA PINE, OR
Jan 20, 2012

I got involved with this one, and I'm glad I did. We the people, made a difference!

pennysfromheaven by pennysfromheaven | WILLIAMSTON, SC
Jan 20, 2012

I hope it worked. I think more Representatives realize how their constituents feel. and I hope they were affected by the blacked out sites they wanted to visit

cocoabella by cocoabella | EL PASO, TX
Jan 20, 2012

yes I believe the protest worked. It motivated people to contact their representatives and urge them to not support SOPA & PIPA. Job well done by Wikipedia and other sites who organized the petition and got the word on on these bills and also all who took the time to contact their representatives. While I don't condone piracy, I don't condone blanket laws which make it possible to go after sites that have broken no laws and that is what SOPA & PIPA would have done.

HartOfKaren by HartOfKaren | TAYLORSVILLE, KY
Jan 20, 2012

I know it certainly got congress' attention!