The Internet is on fire about SOPA, free speech, and intellectual property rights
"I don't know if you've noticed it, but the Internet is on fire. It started with the now-infamous SOPA and PIPA bills. The bills would grant the government unprecedented power to go after any websites accused of copyright infringement. Here's a pretty comprehensive explanation of SOPA, the House version. A huge storm of protest this week, including a 24-hour Wikipedia blackout, split various factions and parties right down the middle (the President came out against it, probably so that the public would still love him, only to find that Hollywood no longer loved him), and led to the bill's being shelved. At least for now.
But things have hardly quieted down. When the government shut down the popular content-sharing site Megaupload yesterday and charged several members of the company with online piracy, the action was widely interpreted as the beginning of government crackdowns on the Web. Angry hackers retaliated accordingly, with attacks on the Department of Justice site, the Motion Picture Association of America site, and the sites of other groups that supported SOPA.
All this raises a lot of questions, some of them fairly murky. As freedom of speech is a fundamental right, how far is it permissible to go to defend it? Since intellectual property belongs to someone, how far should the government go in enforcing that person or corporation's ownership rights? Is it okay to use...." (read the rest of her post here)
Al Mohler offers some helpful analysis from a Christian perspective on ethics and the legal issues here.
How should Christians engage our culture? Click here for further analysis and suggestions.