America to DESTROY the Internet

POSTED BY Kirgy November 21st, 2011 : 5 COMMENTS

There’s a lot going on in the court rooms of the USA at the moment which may completely change the way in which anyone views the Internet. A new law, PROTECT-IP, the media industry have invoked would give the industry the power to close any domain name which is providing illegal material, or even links to illegal material under the copyright acts. This would mean anyone who were to post a music video on facebook could get facebook shut down.

The bizzaar logic of it all, is the media industry only equates to about 6.6% of the US income. Why would the US give access to power which will effect US human rights to an industry which equates to much less a loss than which the Internet provides? Not only this, but other human rights can be easily abused due to the ambiguity of the law.

Current law in the US does not allow for Internet censorship, although some cases of websites being shutdown by the government has been known; pedophilia and breaches of national security. Which I would expect most would agree is a good idea. But should an industry really have the power to shut down sites because of their media being published without permission?

So, if this law goes through, how will it effect Americans, the world and how will we get around it?

First off, American’s will have no freedom on the Internet any more, their freedom will be like a dog tied to a rope, pinned to the floor. It may feel like you can run around the garden, but they wont be able to venture too far without being strangled. It will mean that new Internet start-ups with less abuse of their customer’s free will would face more chance of being stamped out and imprisoned. It would also mean that existing and new websites around the world would be blocked by America’ s own Great Firewall. One of the worst  scenarios is the ambiguity of the law may shut down websites such as youtube, vimeo, facebook, flickr and foursquare for giving the public the ability to post what ever they want to the web.

Its the lacing of the noose around the heads of so many new and existing businesses on the net.

How would it effect the rest of the world?

It would mean that the world may have no access to some of America’s material, or even no interaction with American’s on some websites. This means it would not longer be a world-wide-web. It will world-wide-americanless-web.

It would also mean greater pressure on other governments to follow suite. The media industries across Europe are pressuring governments for similar privileges. It would only be a matter of time before such laws are passed. This would lead to such an unstable global DNS that the Internet would become much less of an international network, and more of national networks with some international connectivity.

How will we get around this firewall?

As always, there are ways around these firewalls. Its important to note that even this law wont stop websites being online, all it will do is shut down DNS of that website. Thats to say, if youtube.com was shutdown, the address www.youtube.com would be inactive but the IP of that website would still take you to the site.

Even so, a technique known as tunneling can proxy a computer across a secure channel to a server. If the server can access the blocked material, then the user could. This would be useful for international connections through the US firewall.

Simple proxy websites could even do the trick, that is, until they too get shut down because of their apparently illegal linking to unauthorised material.

Keep an eye in the international news. Its not being that well covered this side of the pond, but there are some stories to keep you updated.

5 Responses

  1. Tom Bubb says:

    if it starts messing with freedom of speech then the way i see it it wont be allowed by the first ammendment of the constitution, if they allow westboro baptist church to picket funerals for the same reason, they wont stop people posting things on the internet

  2. The key difference is the power is not placed in the government hands – the power for such decisions are in the hands of the media.

  3. Tom Bubb says:

    True, but they aren’t allowed to mess with peoples freedom of speech either, also sites like facebook, youtube etc help the media and are powerful and influential themselves, even if they do go through with it I can’t see it lasting

  4. You would think so, but the implications of such a law infringes freedom of speech. Its not a direct attack to it, but the side effect (which seems largely glanced over so far because of the favour towards the media’s copyrights) will effect freedom on speech on the internet due to the ambiguity of the law and movement of power.

  5. Kirgy says:

    Theres been some more development on this issue since I’ve written this post. Wikipedia and WordPress are doing international web-protests against such acts proposed as this. A BBC news article can be found here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-16604990

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