This weekend, we hosted a meeting at Tumblr HQ with top technology companies, politicians and advocacy groups to coordinate our effort to reform or prevent the well-intentioned but deeply flawed Stop Online Piracy Act from becoming law. You guys have already made a huge impact in Washington, but…
I don’t want censorship of the web! Congress plans on passing a bill this week to block Americans from visiting sites like Tumblr. We need to censor our posts in protest with the #censorshipeverywhere tool, make a call and tell everybody!
... The S.978 Bill is only amending the punishment for criminal infringement on COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL. So unless Justin Bieber is stealing his material from someone else, this Tumblr account has no ground on which to stand. Read up on the government a little more before you throw out wild accusations.
Actually, it’s not quite that simple. While the title of S. 978 seems to have a defined purpose, the wording of the bill is very vague and shows how unfamiliar the sponsoring senators are with Internet culture. For instance, the definition of “willful infringement” could (intentionally or not) include both Illegal streams of feature-length films AND harmless fan productions like Harry Potter music videos or video game reviews made with actual gameplay footage. If you read through Section 5 of Title 17 of the United States Code (“Copyright Infringement and Remedies”), you’ll find that the definition of “infringement” is FAR from singular, and S.978 does nothing to narrow that definition. Our friends at TechDirt wrote a wonderful article detailing some of awful language choices in S. 978, and another wonderful article about why innocent YouTube users could be caught in the bill’s overly wide net. Senator Klobuchar and her fellow sponsors earnestly believe that streaming videos are dived into 2 categories: piracy and original content. But what they don’t understand is that a lot of the original content online includes at least a little bit of piracy. Why would we want to punish innocent individuals for innovating?
Additionally, Justin Bieber DID steal material from other people early in his career. He rose to fame on YouTube by covering songs of major label artists like Ne-Yo and Justin Timberlake. Under the vague wording of S. 978, those types of videos could land Internet users like Justin Bieber in jail.
No, not yet. However, there is a bill that is quickly moving through congress that could land him there. Head over to http://freebieber.org to find out more about the bill and what you can do to help stop it!
No, not yet. But if Senate bill 978 passes, the YouTube videos he recorded of himself singing other artists’ songs would become illegal, and he could be sentenced to 5 years in prison. The threat is very real, please visit http://freebieber.org to learn more about Senate bill 978 and find out how you can help stop it.