STOP SOPA! has joined websites from across the world going dark today in protest of the U.S. Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and PROTECT-IP Act (PIPA). In spite of widespread and varied opposition, the U.S. legislature is contemplating laws that would effectively prevent security-enhancing initiatives while threatening online innovation and freedom of expression.

The legislation will grant U.S. attorney generals the authority to block non-U.S. websites accused of copyright infringement as well as obligate Internet intermediaries to police content posted to their sites by users or risk being shut out from their U.S. audiences. It is yet one more example of the harms that can result for an overly aggressive, no holds barred, U.S.-driven IP agenda. It imposes more restrictive standards on foreign intermediaries than the U.S. requires of its own Internet companies through its DMCA notice-takedown regime. In Canada, we currently face other more specific features of this IP agenda, with the impending adoption of digital locks into our copyright laws as well as the looming threat of copyright term extension.

We'll be back tomorrow but for now, learn more about SOPA and PIPA at EFF, Public Knowledge, and the Center for Democracy & Technology, or call on Canadian representatives to protest this legislation. If you're worried about copyright generally, tell your MP's that you do not value copyrigth at all costs!