A week on the web: Sopa, Pipa and #FactsWithoutWikipedia
Wikipedia was one of several high-traffic websites that went ‘dark’ on Wednesday in protest at proposed legislation in the US that would – critics say – seriously infringe freedom on the internet. Twitter reacted by making up a load of random facts the veracity of which no one could check
- Lazy students (and most journalists) were in crisis mode on Wednesday when Wikipedia took itself offline. The font of all web wisdom joined a number of other high-profile sites in ‘going dark’ in protest against the Stop Online Piracy Act (Sopa) and Protect IP Act (Pipa).
These two pieces of US anti-piracy legislation aim to clamp down on digital copyright violations. Critics say they will have a chilling effect on the web – hence the protest.
- Here for Clay Shirky’s eloquently argued demolition of the proposals:
- And here for a gallery of messages from the protest’s backers:
- Best use of music
- The Richard Dawkins award for Bible-bashing
- The Professor Brian Cox award for inspiring people to look wistfully at the sky from the top of the mountain
- Best appearance by an animal
- Best (probably only) tweet mentioning Nicolas Cage
- The Paul Dacre award for impartiality
- Best tweet managing the nigh-on impossible task of likening the royal wedding to complex US legislation
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