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SOPA and PROTECT-IP (also known as "PIPA"), along with the OPEN Act are bills currently in Congress, which threaten the very existence of the web. It will enable rights holders to legitimately -- and even fradulantly -- shut down websites that allegedly infringe copyright. They are censorship bills.
Today, the web has fallen silent, blacked out its pages, become dark, and effectively gone on strike. From Wikipedia to Google, even Firefox users are affected, as are other major online communities.
This gallery will show you some of the major websites that have gone dark or offline today.
Google opposes SOPA and PIPA, but was late to the game in blacking out its search engine. While it was not clear whether the search giant would do anything, U.S. users of Google.com discovered this morning that its logo was entirely redacted, and a link at the bottom of the page explaining what SOPA is.
The search engine has over 65 percent U.S. marketshare, and is the most popular search engine in the world.
You can read Google's comments here.
Boing Boing, the popular technology website, has been one of the spearheads behind the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) blackout campaign, in which we see hundreds of millions, if not breaching the billion mark of users worldwide, all collectively protesting the draft bills.
The website posted a message over the weekend, saying: "If we failed to take this precaution, our finances could be frozen, our ad broker forced to pull ads from our site, and depending on which version of the bill goes to the vote, our domains confiscated, and, because our server is in Canada, our IP address would be added to a US-wide blacklist that every ISP in the country would be required to censor".