The Empire Strikes Back

The web is full of stories attempts being made to close down websites this morning by governments.  The programme is starting as a way to stop counterfeit goods being put on sale, but is already progressing into other areas, with one search site being closed with allegations of copyright infringement made, but no legal process or defence allowed by the website owner.

Raw Story reports –

Homeland Security’s ability to shut down sites without a court order evidently comes from the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, a Clinton-era law that allows Web sites to be closed on the basis of a copyright complaint. Critics have long assailedthe DMCA for being too broad, as complainants don’t need to prove copyright infringement before a site can be taken down.
News of the shutdowns has some observers wondering whether the US really needs COICA, the anti-counterfeiting bill that passed through a Senate committee with unanimous approval last week. That bill would allow the federal government to block access to Web sites that attorneys general deem to have infringed on copyright.
“Domain seizures coming under the much debated ‘censorship bill’ COICA? Who needs it?” quips Torrentfreak.
However, COICA would allow the government to block access to Web sites located anywhere in the world, while Homeland Security’s take-downs are limited to servers inside the United States. Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon said he would place a hold on COICA, effectively killing the bill at least until the new congressional session next year.
The owner of complained that his search engine was shut down without so much as a court order or prior complaint.
All they need to do is ”receive” a report of copyright infringement, and then they can close a site.
The internet is hurting the shadow governments of the world by exposing who they are and what they’re doing.  The Empire is bound to strike back.
Sites will need to be ready to move address every day, and have an easy way to pass their new web address into a web directory where readers can find their new URL.  Meanwhile make the most of our freedom while it lasts.
The Tap Blog is a collective of like-minded researchers and writers who’ve joined forces to distribute information and voice opinions avoided by the world’s media.

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