Last month, we reported on the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), which, if passed, would allow U.S. authorities to seize the domain names of copyright-infringing websites.
The Business Software Alliance (BSA), which initially supported SOPA, has decided the legislation goes too far, and has formally withdrawn their support for the bill. The BSA represents IT and tech companies such as Microsoft, SAP, IBM, Dell and Hewlett-Packard.
BSA president and CEO Robert Holleyman said, “Valid and important questions have been raised about the bill. It is intended to get at the worst of the worst offenders. As it now stands, however, it could sweep in more than just truly egregious actors.”
If passed, SOPA would enable the U.S. government to block access to websites internationally. This not only includes the .com domain, but also .net and .org, domain names, which are used by millions of organizations outside the legal jurisdiction of the U.S.
The withdraw of the BSA’s support marks a pivotal moment in this debate, as our nation attempts to find a balance between freedom of speech and copyright infringement. We will continue to closely monitor this situation, as it directly affects the future of the marketing industry, the internet and the way we communicate.