Last week [December 18th, 2012] marked one of the most exciting days the internet has seen in a long time. It wasn’t some hacktivist group taking down a website, although they did do that, but the internet broke out in e-protest over the Stop Online Piracy Act & Protect IP Act. In case you are unaware of what these actually are you can refer back to my article about SOPA & PIPA that I posted on the day of the protests. This is a topic that I chose to get much more involved in than I normally do because the internet is a sacred and special place to me as an MMO player.
We all know that the game industry suffers severely from piracy and digital content theft. Entire websites have been devoted to the distribution via torrents of game files and they are getting worse and worse every day. When I was digging around doing to research on SOPA & PIPA to find out who was actually in support of this bill from my State I ran across two things that made me incredibly disappointed. The first was that not only did both of Minnesota’s senators (Al Franken and Amy Klobuchar) support the bill; they were actually the original Co-sponsors of the bill. While that doesn’t affect you much the second thing I found actually does. One of the most important companies in all of videogames actually supports SOPA & PIPA. Nintendo Entertainment was one of over 50 companies that put their signature (albeit Digital signature) onto the letter that drove congress to create these bills.
One of the common mistakes that I have heard on these bills is that everyone who is against them is pro-piracy and supports the stealing of content. Really, that couldn’t be further from the truth. While I support Nintendo and their right to protect their own intellectual property. They are, as a company, choosing to take the lazy way out support sweeping changes across the internet rather than dealing with the sites on an individual basis. So as a fan of videogames, and whether you like or hate the Nintendo Wii–make sure Nintendo knows that you disagree with their support for the SOPA & PIPA bills that are being debated in congress. Let them know that while you aren’t pro-piracy you are also against their name being on that letter that brought us SOPA & PIPA.