USA: Google Executive Chairman says proposed legislation aimed at protecting copyright "would lead to censorship" of internet

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Article
15 November 2011

Google's Schmidt Blasts Internet Copyright Bills [USA]

Author: Reuters [USA]

Google Inc Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt blasted proposed legislation to tighten online copyright regulation…saying the bills would lead to censorship of the Internet. Intended to combat the trade in pirated movies and music, the two bills would give copyright holders and law enforcement officials added powers to cut off websites and require search engines, payment collectors and others to block access. "The solutions are draconian,'' Schmidt said…"There's a bill that would require (Internet service providers) to remove URLs from the Web, which is also known as censorship last time I checked.'' [also refers to AOL, eBay, Facebook, Yahoo, Twitter]

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Article
15 November 2011

Stop the Great Firewall of America

Author: Rebecca MacKinnon founder of Global Voices Online in New York Times

Congress, under pressure to take action against the theft of intellectual property, is considering misguided legislation that would strengthen China’s Great Firewall and even bring major features of it to America…Alarm at the infringement of creative works through the Internet is justifiable. The solutions offered by the legislation, however, threaten to inflict collateral damage on democratic discourse and dissent both at home and around the world. The bills would empower the attorney general to create a blacklist of sites to be blocked by Internet service providers, search engines, payment providers and advertising networks, all without a court hearing or a trial. The House version goes further, allowing private companies to sue service providers for even briefly and unknowingly hosting content that infringes on copyright…The intention is not the same as China’s Great Firewall, a nationwide system of Web censorship, but the practical effect could be similar. [refers to Diebold, YouTube (part of Google), Twitter, Facebook, Weibo]

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