It’s 1:00 p.m. in the afternoon and you sluggishly trek back to your pint-sized holding cell at the office. After indulging in a high calorie meal from your favorite fast food restaurant, slacker mode kicks in. Face it, you’d rather be browsing the World Wide Web until it’s time to clock out, than crunching numbers for the wanker’s who sign your paycheck. This afternoon your drug of choice is YouTube. After all, who hasn’t wasted a few brain cells watching mindless content generated by YouTube’s driving force. I’m talking about people like you. Yes’ you! Now back to the scenario. So, you search for the latest episode of “You are not the father” posted by your favorite YouTube user, when the following message appears: Due to SOPA’s copyright violation the content posted by user EyePirateU2Day has been prohibited. All subscribers associated with this account will be subject to search by anal probe with no lube. All property used to access or illegally download content from the site will be confiscated. Posting or illegally downloading intellectual property or content backed by the SOPA act of 2012 is punishable by a minimum of 5 years in prison.
Oh shit, panic mode! Visions of militia men armed with large phalluses, gearing up to kick down your office door dance in your head. Afraid the powers that be will find out about your unproductive afternoon activities, you immediately unplug the computer from the wall in hopes of thwarting “big brother” from tracking down your IP address. Relax! This is the most extreme case but you get the picture.
Thankfully, SOPA and PIPA we’re blasted to brinks of extinction by citizens like you putting the pressure on, and taking action against “The Man.” Round of applause you should be proud of yourself! Unfortunately, remnants of bills such as SOPA & PIPA have morphed into the more dangerous Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA), which threatens your privacy and freedom of speech on the internet.
What It Does
CISPA (H.R. 3523) the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, written by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) and Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-Md.), is disputable legislation which converges on sharing information on the internet and “cyber security.” When the misinformed think about cyber security, one would believe it only involves antivirus software or firewalls installed in their pc; I like to call these the “condoms” that protect our hardware. Now, picture CISPA as a condom with holes; its primary job is to assist ISP in investigating cyber attacks against co-op’s and federal agencies, by providing our government with information on hackers and countries engaged in cyber espionage. But what price would we pay allowing ISP free reign by providing information at their convenience, to the government, about private citizen’s online activities?
Why It’s Disliked
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), hacktivist, and other civil liberties groups are against sharing private citizen’s information under the guise of cyber security, without due process of law. There is a need to provide a certain level of cyber policing; with an understanding it is necessary in catching criminals. However, the holes in CISPA allow “virtual spying” on average citizens web activities, without the appropriate system of checks and balances, protecting the general public’s rights. After all, who wants big brother tracking their twisted online porn addictions? Now I have your undivided attention, you’re right! This isn’t cool at all. Please don’t rest on your laurels, there’s work to be done.
It’s imperative that concerned Internet users like you tell Congress to stop this bill. Instead of filling out random online questionnaires about nonsense, take the time to fill out an online petition or send a tweet with the hash tag #CISPAalert, expressing your thoughts as a means of protest. There are several organizations armed with the tools to assist you in fighting this bill. To make it easy for you check out the websites below for petitions and up to date information on CISPA.
© 2013 Seven Magazine