By Ian Bush
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The Senate was supposed to hold a key vote this week on a bill that would crack down on pirated content on the Internet. Despite a giant web protest that bumped the current legislation offline, its supporters vow to push on.
The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) is all but shredded and the Protect IP Act (PIPA) has been swept under the rug — if not for good, then at least likely until after the election.
“There’s lots of concern from folks who think that any sort of censorship on the Internet — any sort of blocking or consequences for websites dedicated to piracy — is against the sort of free and open nature of the Internet,” says Delaware Senator Chris Coons, a co-sponsor of PIPA.
Coons says the bill is far from dead, and all the scrutiny will make it better when it does come up for a vote. “I do think there’s a way to craft a more narrow solution to this that strengthens the hand of those companies that want to protect their intellectual property rights against foreign websites that are infringing their rights to the property and inventions they create, while listening to the legitimate concerns of Internet freedom advocates.”
Coons calls stopping online piracy a matter of protecting American innovation. “I’ve heard significant concerns for months from businesses based in Delaware and from around the country that rely on the Internet to sell products that they invent, that they make.”
He says he’ll push for a law that respects those who use the web — and musicians, moviemakers, software writers and others who make and sell content.