Posts Tagged ‘sopa’

Big Brother in the Great White North

Friday, June 8th, 2012

We protested. We rallied. We petitioned. They didn’t care. No matter how vocal we Canadians have been against ludicrous surveillance bills and privacy eroding legislation, corporately-owned politicians like Vic Toews refuse to quit their attempts to force unwanted rulings into Canada’s law books.

What is it this time, you ask? None other than our old nemesis Bill C-30. Except now that it’s been reanimated, it has extra ghoulish powers, like giving warrantless surveillance not just to Canadian agencies, but also to US authorities who would then have access to our private information.

The bill is not without it’s dissenters. According to, “nearly two-thirds of opposition MPs” stand against Bill C-30, a number sure to grow the more noise the public makes.

Still, as Law Professor Michael Geist points out in a lengthy yet insightful posting, the Intellectual Property Lobby tends to ignore facts in favor of ideology, looking at counterfeiting and piracy as vile evils to be fought at any expense.

But, as pointed out by myself and others, the fight against file-sharing stems from a few behemoth media companies sporting archaic business models that won’t adapt to today’s market. So they do the only thing they can: try to pass laws that protect their bottom line no matter the greater cost to society.

It’s sad and scary to think our elected officials are working so feverishly to screw us all over. Worse still, if the public keeps shutting down individual bills, the Tories might just cram them all together into next year’s omnibus budget bill and then ram it through parliament.

Just 3 more years. 3 more years? Oh man.

US Censorship Hypocrisy

Monday, April 23rd, 2012

Figurehead of America’s 2-party dictatorship, President Barack Obama, announced plans today to impose sanctions against any regime caught stifling protests by blocking Internet access. That is, any regime except their own. (more…)

So Long Privacy, Hello Transparency

Saturday, April 14th, 2012

Patsy politicians pandering to plutocratic priorities threaten to pilfer our precious privacy. Lousy legislation like ACTA, SOPA and now CISPA have come to the forefront of this fight, and these bills will all be, hopefully, crushed without mercy beneath  the feet of millions of vigilant citizens.

Still, as disheartening as it may be to hear, these exercises could ultimately prove pointless because privacy is fast going extinct. (more…)

CISPA: The Return of SOPA

Thursday, April 5th, 2012

We knew this day would come. SOPA – the Internet-destroying bill we rallied together to destroy – is back! Legislators, hell-bent on crippling digital freedoms and stifling the incredible power of social media, have drafted a bill which is even worse than the one we shot down.

The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) forces Internet providers and other online businesses to hand user data over to government agencies upon request, no warrant or court oversight needed.

What’s the big deal?, you may ask. They just want to stop rampant piracy, right? That’s what the pretense is, but the subtext is to give more tools for the government to quash dissent.

Just as the PATRIOT act was supposed to fight violent extremist but ended up being used for non-terror related crimes, CISPA is likely to be used for silencing critics and impeding social uprisings rather than tackling what mega-corporations deem to be illegitimate file-sharing.

This means it’s time to, once again, rally the troops. We cannot tire. We cannot relent. Corporations will never cease trying to strip us of our power, so we can never stop fighting for our rights.

Ideally, this time we will rise in such great numbers, with such a tremendous fury, that anti-Internet legislators will think twice before drafting the next cockamamie bill they try to push down our throats.

Cloud Computing… For Real!

Tuesday, March 20th, 2012

Watch out for more drones in the sky! Only this time, instead of bombing innocents and invading privacy, new unmanned aircraft are being designed to host Internet web sites.

The Pirate Bay – the world’s largest free information enabler – announced plans to develop and release so-called Low Orbit Server Stations, which will fly above international waters to serve the world’s file-sharing community.

So, once launched, even if some corporate lobbyists manage to convince governments to execute a take-down on The Pirate Bay’s servers, their raids will prove futile, since the information they seek will be, literally, up in the air.

For now, the idea is just that, an idea. There are several technical issues to overcome, including building solar powered aircraft that can hold computing equipment and networking devices while staying airborne 24 hours a day.

Still, once completed, the implications will be awesome!

ACTA, PIPA, SOPA, C-11, and whatever other censorship nonsense the government tries to impose on us will be no match for human ingenuity. If they want to crack down on our free Internet, we will build a new one.

Picture thousands of wireless hotspots forming a meshed network, mounted on rooftops, street poles, cars, and robotic drones hovering above, to provide everyone with free access to an unrestricted Internet.

With 3D printers churning out more amazing stuff every day, and solar getting so effective and accessible, a decade or two is all it will take to deploy an indomitable mesh Internet across all of earth’s major hubs.

Hooray! One more blow to the encroaching totalitarian regime.


The Free Internet Act

Thursday, February 23rd, 2012

SOPA has been squashedACTA might be on its final act, and Bill C-30 is now under close surveillance, but the battle for an uncensored Internet rages on.

Enter the Free Internet Act, designed to “promote prosperity, creativity, entrepreneurship and innovation by preventing the restriction of liberty and preventing the means of censorship.”


People Power Protecting Net Freedom

Wednesday, February 15th, 2012

Hundreds of thousands of people have spoken, and leaders are starting to listen. The notoriously overbearing ACTA agreement, which aims to stem the flow of file-sharing by imposing restrictions on the internet, is on the ropes as official support continues to drop.

Bulgaria and the Netherlands have joined Poland and Germany in declining to ratify ACTA. Hooray!

The struggle is by no means over. ACTA hasn’t been killed yet, and even if it does get scrapped, there will be even more insidious bills coming down the pipeline.

Still, the bright side is that democracy works. Government goes to whoever shows up, and when the numbers involved get large enough, systems cater to the will of the majority.

Corporations may bring millions of bribe dollars to the table, but as long as millions of engaged individuals get involved and speak out in unison, politicians and governments will have no choice but to side with the people.

File-Sharing Countermeasures are Counterproductive

Friday, February 10th, 2012

Last month saw the battle for Internet freedom reach new heights as millions of people and thousands of businesses came together to protest SOPA, the overreaching anti-file sharing bill creeping its way through US legislature.

One day after the Jan. 17th SOPA blackout protest, prominent file-hosting site MegaUpload was shut down. MegaUpload owner Kim Dotcom was extradited to the US and millions of his assets have now been seized.

So what impact did the US Government’s global exercise have on unauthorized file-sharing around the world? Close to zero, according to networking gurus Deepfield, who write “File sharing has not gone away. It did not even decrease much in North America.”

In fact, the brutish take down of Megaupload caused “file sharing to become staggeringly less efficient.” Now, instead of terabytes of North American MegaUpload traffic going to US servers, “most file sharing traffic now comes from Europe over far more expensive transatlantic links.”

By all accounts, this would seem like a failure. Yet, sadly, this kind of Internet censorship has all the makings of a lasting American policy.

Take the war on drugs, as an example. Despite dumping tens of billions of dollars annually chasing illegal substances, America has yet to create even the slightest dent in the flow of drugs.

But that hasn’t stopped them from manufacturing an entire industry around drug prohibition, with task forces and mega-jails to reap in huge profits. This, along with a propaganda machine to keep enough of the public misinformed, is all it takes to keep the whole racket ongoing.

Now, with file-sharing, the US has a new enemy to wage war on. Another target to demonize in the media, more culprits to fill of the jails, and more power handed over to any government agency promising to protect the public from this scourge.

Of course these agencies will not have any lasting impact, but that’s not the goal. Instead, the file-sharing ‘pigs’ will be allowed to grow. Then, when plump and juicy, some well-funded government goons will swoop in and slaughter the swine, leaving the door open for the next one, and the next, and the next.

It’s Prohibition 101, and without enough public uproar, they’ll have no problem running the same tired play ad nauseum. Either speak out now or get your sick bags ready, people.

Bill Maher: Dropping the Ball

Monday, February 6th, 2012

Funnyman Bill Maher has long been a voice of the people, daring to speak what few others would risk saying, and he does it all on national TV. His ‘New Rules’ segment, often timely and inspiring, usually place Maher’s insights on the forefront of the progressive movement.

However, it can be extremely frustrating to see him consistently fall into the trap of the two-party dictatorship. Time and time again, Bill Maher will lament about his precious Democrats standing strong, only to crumble at the last minute. And, no matter how much Obama strays from the liberal agenda, Maher still pledges die-hard support behind his guy.

Maher fails to recognize that both Democrats and Republicans are two sides of the same coin, offering the public the illusion of choice, while the super-rich and the corporations run away with the political system. Or maybe he does realize this, and, as a super-rich guy himself, he’s okay with it.

Case and point, a few weeks back Bill Maher openly supported SOPA without even researching what the draconian legislation would entail. He just blindly stated that whatever stops file-sharing is a good thing, no matter how bad liberties and internet freedoms get squashed. Talk about missing the mark.

And now, on his latest episode, Bill Maher spoke out against the people’s uprising, calling the Occupy protesters “Douchebags” who need to “Get A Job”.  Wow, Maher sure has fallen prey to the mainstream media’s framing of the narrative.

Little does Bill Maher know, the Occupy movement grows stronger with every new day. Never has there been more numbers involved, and those who are involved are more organized, mobilized and better focused than ever before.

Time will tell if Maher does an about face to rejoin the progressive movement. If he doesn’t, then he risks being amongst the rest of the greedy oligarchs who get ostracized when the impending revolution is finally realized.

Canadians Must Crush C-11

Monday, January 30th, 2012

Well-funded lobbyists representing the special interests of media giants have, for many years now, been engaged in an all out war against the Internet as we know it. The free exchange of information fostered by the Net represents a threat to their business models. Unwilling/unable to change themselves, these behemoth corporations are looking to change the Internet, even if it means destroying everything good about it.

Here in Canada the latest front in the battle against online liberty takes the form of Bill C-11, a piece of proposed legislation that has already garnered an extensive list of dissenting organizations, representing millions of Canadian voices.

The proponents of Bill C-11, much like those who pushed the outlandish SOPA bill until it was shelved due to unprecedented public uproar, largely consists of Hollywood film studios, major record labels, and other high-level mucky-mucks who earn their keep in the entertainment industry.

Several proposals in C-11 would create what is essentially a digital lock, allowing courts to order websites blocked from Canada without the need for any proof of copyright infringement or due process. In other words, they want the right to censor the Internet on a whim, and to hell with what any of you whiny citizens may want.

Clearly this bill would be a bad thing for the majority of freedom-loving Canadians. Worse still, should this bill pass, it would give the precedence for other countries to follow suit. ‘Look, the Canucks are doing it… we should too!’

If you haven’t already done so, you need to step up to the plate. Write or call your MP, your MLA, and any other politician you can think of. Plead with your friends and family to get involved. Without sufficient backlash from the Canadian people, this bill will pass. And then the next one, then the next one, until the Internet is nothing but a portal to corporate products and their corresponding commercials.

If my words aren’t enough to motivate you, then I’ll leave you with this inspiring call to action from Redditor Stormy_Fairweather:

SOPA, PIPA, ACTA, C-11, TPP, PCIP… the writing is on the wall. Those who would rule are terrified of the internet. They are doing everything they can to choke it, to control it, to bring it under their rule.

We MUST not allow it, for the future of our species, it is time to fight, it is time to overthrow our masters, it is time we stopped being domesticated and embraced the greatness within us. Every man should be his own master, and if we do not make this happen then we will all be slaves.

For Humanity!