The SOPA online piracy bill that helped spark this week's unprecedented Internet protests will be redrafted, its lead sponsor said Friday.The fight may not be done yet, but it's nice to know that the protests, most notably the blackout, actually had some effect.
The move came shortly after the Senate postponed a key vote on the companion PIPA bill scheduled for next week and amid calls for consensus before Congress moves forward on any legislation to address the problem of foreign piracy websites.
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) had hoped to push his Stop Online Piracy Act through the committee next month. But in the wake of growing opposition triggered by Wednesday's Internet blackout, Smith said the committee "will postpone consideration of the legislation until there is wider agreement on a solution."
"I have heard from the critics and I take seriously their concerns regarding proposed legislation to address the problem of online piracy," Smith said. "It is clear that we need to revisit the approach on how best to address the problem of foreign thieves that steal and sell American inventions and products."
Smith said his committee "remains committed to finding a solution to the problem of online piracy that protects American intellectual property and innovation." -[LA Times]
In somewhat related news, and as previously mentioned, Anonymous (says that they) attacked a bunch of websites last night in retaliation for Megaupload's shutdown.Good Morning Silicon Valley has an update:
The Department of Justice and FBI sites are back up today after being targeted yesterday by hacker group Anonymous in retaliation for the takedown of Megaupload.com, a file-sharing site the U.S. government says enables online piracy. However, Universal Music Group's site, another target, remains inaccessible this morning. The shutdown of Megaupload Thursday came a day after the Web went dark in protest of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect IP Act (PIPA). Anonymous vowed yesterday it would go after government and entertainment websites, saying on its YourAnonNews Twitter account: "You cannot censor the internet. You cannot subpoena a hashtag. You cannot arrest an idea. You CAN expect us #OpMegaupload."Still waiting for Hipster Runoff (who has written on the subject) to theorize that Anonymous was actually going after Universal's website in retaliation for Lana Del Rey's SNL performance.
The New York Times reports that of the seven people named in the indictment, four have been arrested and three are at large. Those arrested include the founder of Hong Kong-based Megaupload, Kim Dotcom, a 37-year-old man the Telegraph describes as "a millionaire playboy" who has been called Germany's "most notorious hacker."