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Why is SOPA important for us as teachers and learners?

Written by Christina Cantrill
January 19, 2012

Being far from an expert on this subject, I googled a few people who are.

 Clay Shirky is one.

In the end, the real threat to the enactment of PIPA and SOPA, is our ability to share things with one another. 

TED Talk: Defend our freedom to share (or why SOPA is a bad idea)

Renee Hobbs is another. When recently asked to explain SOPA and its potential impact on higher education, Renee said,

SOPA is the Stop Online Piracy Act – it’s provides a stronger enforcement mechanism to protect digital infringement. Proponents say stronger enforcement is needed to protect against rampant piracy. Opponents say the bill, as written, will set up an official censorship network for the currently open Internet. SOPA could greatly impact media scholars and other educators because people who comment on mass media and popular culture often need to use excerpts of other people’s work. Their work might become “invisible” on the Internet if blacklisted by the SOPA law. 

The New York Times Learning Network reminds us that this is an important teachable moment for us all. And encourages us to take action now.

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