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The Real Lesson of the SOPA Blackout: The Internet Should Flex Its Muscles More Often

We're people who work hard at important jobs like everyone else. But we're hardly the group most in need of grassroots activist support.


Yesterday, basically the entire internet pulled together to protest government censorship. I've never seen online activism quite like this: dozens of unaffiliated websites staging a coordinated push for government change. All we had to do was take a seat—firewall our content, black out our designs, send readers away from our sites and to their nearest virtual congressional office. As someone who produces content primarily online, I've never been so aware of my own power over the national conversation.

Actually, it's a little disconcerting. Internet professionals came together to urge Congress to reject SOPA and PIPA because we believe that an unregulated internet is better for everyone, but also because the legislation would directly affect our bottom lines. At I Work for the Internet, you can see the faces of people who would be affected by these bills. We're predominantly white guys with laptop cameras (and some pretty boss headphones!). We're people who work hard at important jobs like everyone else. But we're hardly the group most in need of grassroots activist support.

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One Dark Web: How Sites Are Responding to SOPA

Check out what other websites are doing for the day of action against SOPA.

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Wikipedia is undeniably the biggest story of today's internet protest against SOPA, but dozens of other sites are publicly opposing the bill as well—from full-on blackouts to special graphics, banners, and popups. Here at GOOD, we elected to protest through articles and our nifty pop-up graphic. Check out what other websites are doing for the day of action against SOPA, and please suggest others on Twitter or in the comments; we'll update the list later today.

Blackout:

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