Why you should care about the SOPA and PIPA legislation – Part 2

Michael PhillipsIsmail Hatipoglu asked on Twitter whether the SOPA and PIPA legislation will have any direct impact on our users now or in the future. That’s a good question, and one I neglected to address in yesterday’s article.

If one or both pass, they will unquestionably have a potential negative impact on the hosting experience for everyone.

However – don’t expect anything to change overnight. This is not the kind of thing that will have a direct impact on your sites.

But from the perspective of a host (and this applies to every host in the world, not just DiscountASP.NET), here are some things you can eventually expect to see:

  • Increased new account set up time
  • Periodic “site reviews” to insure that there is no infringing content anywhere
  • Increased fees to support monitoring of sites and to offset litigation costs
  • Periodic “blackouts” of all or part of everyone’s networks, caused by government-sanctioned IP redirection and DNS tampering
  • Decreased tolerance for “borderline” or “questionable infringement” sites

PIPA would require “big brother” oversight of customer content, something we do not undertake now (nor is it something that we want to undertake). But that kind of oversight would be necessary to protect us from legal liability. We – and everyone else – would be forced to watch what our customers are doing a protective measure.

But again, there is no effect now, and if the legislation does manage to pass, I believe we can expect to see a great deal of resistance from some very large companies to enforcement of the vague and punitive aspects of the acts. The day a PIPA complaint removes, say, YouTube from the Internet (it is, after all, a vast repository of copyright infringement), well, I think things will get interesting.

To say the least.

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