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In just two decades, the world wide web has transformed and democratized access to information all around the world. I am proud of the role Google has played alongside many others such as Yahoo, Wikipedia, and Twitter. Whether you are a student in an internet cafe in the developing world or a head of state of a wealthy nation, the knowledge of the world is at your fingertips.

Of course, offering these services has come with its challenges. Multiple countries have sought to suppress the flow of information to serve their own political goals. At various times notable Google websites have been blocked in China, Iran, Libya (prior to their revolution), Tunisia (also prior to revolution), and others. For our own websites and for the internet as a whole we have worked tirelessly to combat internet censorship around the world alongside governments and NGO promoting free speech.

Thus, imagine my astonishment when the newest threat to free speech has come from none other but the United States. Two bills currently making their way through congress -- SOPA and PIPA -- give the US government and copyright holders extraordinary powers including the ability to hijack DNS and censor search results (and this is even without so much as a proper court trial). While I support their goal of reducing copyright infringement (which I don't believe these acts would accomplish), I am shocked that our lawmakers would contemplate such measures that would put us on a par with the most oppressive nations in the world.

This is why I signed on to the following open letter with many other founders - http://dq99alanzv66m.cloudfront.net/sopa/img/12-14-letter.pdf
See also: http://americancensorship.org/ and http://engineadvocacy.org/
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243 comments
 
+Sergey Brin Thank you. As a founding member of EFF and other online associations, I love seeing others joining the fight we started 20+ years ago.
 
Google Rocks Info-sharing.
Sadhu! Well done indeed! :-)
 
Freedom of Speech Vs Censorship: Which side will win? We don't know but for sure every country is tightening its control on Internet content, even US is doing so
 
Would be interresting if all companies listed suspended activities and let their sites go blank for one day
 
America is the new China......or so they hope.

Good luck with this unfortunately in the UK the volume of cash they bribed our government with was too much and common sense was not enough to save us from our equivalent, the Digital Economy Act.
 
+Ethan Madison Many of them are already involved. This is ultimately up to all of us to contact our representatives. I am putting serious pressure on Cong. Paul Ryan who I believe is still supporting it.
 
Thanks +Sergey Brin . We need everyone to come out against these bills. Even without SOPA, universal music managed to censor a daily tech news show Tech News Today anchored by +Tom Merritt of +TWiT . That was all for just covering a legal battle involving some music rights. I am appalled at what just the DMCA has given rightsholders the power to do. Under SOPA, rightsholders like Universal would have even more draconian powers.
 
Good luck. We are seeing some fleeting effects of such hypocritical bureaucracy in India too. A people's movement is the only answer to this since the bills get passed anyway on the basis of house voting inspite of public outrage. They are making us fight to protect our fundamental rights.
 
Thank you for your words, Mr. Brin. I can't help but wonder why Google didn't join the protest on American Censorship Day, though...
 
Thank you, Mr. Brin,

I've thinking the same thing on a walk not too long ago and wonder just how your and your partners feel about your very special role in a very special segment of time.

Thank you for your light!

www.Anancybooks.com
 
Hope US government don`t follow the Chinese government in the aspect of censorship of website.They filter lots of information which is not good to them.
 
I am shocked that our lawmakers would contemplate such measures that would put us on a par with the most oppressive nations in the world.
Completamente de acuerdo. No censurar por censurar, sólo es propio de gobiernos opresivos y sin libertades.
 
Is People's Republic of China role model for US and the rest of the World?
 
Google was good for some time but now it's working not good. This service of grabbing the latest content really not good. When I asm trying to find something about some events for example Olympic of the past even if I type the year of the game I am still getting information about recent event not the vent I need.
 
+Michael Nachtigal I agree. It is a very scary scenario. Startups would need to employ more lawyers than engineers. We need people who understand technology to bring light to the problems. Lobbying by the RIAA and MPAA has gotten out of hand.
jesse s
 
fight the good fight my friend
 
Website bring light the problems,so we should encourage free speech.
 
+Sergey Brin This is a crucial fight.. If you think it adds value to get startup founders to sign as well, I'm happy to sign, and will get a few other entrepreneurs to sign.
 
The list of countries with censored, crippled or no Internet access includes also Cuba, Vietnam, Syria, Saudia Arabia, Burma, North Korea, United Arab Emirates.
 
+Sergey Brin What the tech giants could do is threaten to withdraw from the US and move to say, canada. This would be a huge turning point on their decision, since the online community, namely in Silicon Valley, help to fund the US treasury with billions of dollars annually. and billions more than the entertainment agencies do.

Surely a threat like this, will help them realize exactly what it is that they are doing to the internet.
 
+Sergey Brin Thank you, you really seem to stand behind your ideals (EFF on Mission). Now how about some Google frontpage coverage? ;)
 
I cannot support the stopping of SOPA and PIPA enough. It will kill the internet within the US save for those few who are savvy enough to circumvent it, but sadly not enough people are this knowledgeable.
 
Maybe blue ribbons for the Google logo this week?
 
+Sergey Brin I think perhaps the Google DNS server should be brought down for a day, simply to demonstrate the effect that this could have.
 
I have not seen or heard of a single person that supports these bills. How can our "representatives" even excuse something like this?!
 
A censored Google Frontpage and annoying pop-ups with every search telling everybody about the Censorship, that's what we need, this whole SOPA thing got pretty much no Media Coverage besides the Internets. Think I saw at least a 1 Minute Coverage in Public TV? Yeah right -_-
To the Masses it must seem like it doesn't even exist. We need to set a Fire for people to stop and open their friggin eyes!
 
In 2001 I thought I was going to die (no, not 9/11 - ovarian cancer). But I survived, and today I marvel at how much the world has changed. In 2009 I saw Neda die before my eyes, and two years later I watched the Arab spring unfold. Last year I saw a couple get married in a flash mob in a shopping mall. On YouTube I listen to Beatles covers, and keep track of the best ones - not easy when a new version of "Blackbird" alone pops up every 3 hours or so. On Google+ I got circled by photographers all over the world, and now, every day I'm transported to places I thought I'd never see. I could go on, but I'll just say: Thank you.
 
"Give the U.S Government the power to censor the web using techniques similar to those used by China,Calasia and Iran;"
泪流满面啊!
 
Although I do not completely understand the intentions of USA with these bills, restrictions are hardly ever for the betterment in general.
Restrictions usually follow where Education has failed or alternative plans could not be employed successfully.
 
+Joern Konopka say thanks for the fact you dont see anything about it in "mainstream" media, because it is controlled by those trying to push these lawsuits... what would you think they would put up there? it'd convince the masses those lawsuits are pure good and necessary for every last one of them...
+Sergey Brin Thanks for the effort ;) I hope this does make a difference..
 
Thank you for posting this Mr. Brin. Those who would vote for these bills (and NDAA) either do not understand the damge these bills will do or they simply do not care and you have a large number of people in government who do not have the best interests of the people at heart. Either situation is unacceptable. These three bills (inc. the shocking habeas corpus ending NDAA) would effectively make the USA a police state and must be stopped at all costs.
 
just another and another dollar!@gravvyman
 
The illusion of freedom [in America] will continue as long as it’s profitable to continue the illusion. At the point where the illusion becomes too expensive to maintain, they will just take down the scenery, they will pull back the curtains, they will move the tables and chairs out of the way and you will see the brick wall at the back of the theater. - Frank Zappa
 
When will google move somewhere safe? The US has already a poor record, its not like this is a 'new' trend.
 
Sergy is there away Google can make Youtube.com more subscriber friendly.@gravvyman
 
SOPA and PIPA
Интернет позволяет увидеть и услышать всё. Если SOPA и PIPA будут приняты, интернет не нужен. Защита от SOPA и PIPA приведёт к краху нынешней экономики, но это неизбежно будет пользоваться спросом
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I live in Iran and I'm sorry to say even G+ is filtered here;
I didn't use Facebook that much but I really love G+ and having to let go of G+ is something that I can't do.
People in power are scared of the knowledge being shared on social medias, because they know better that they are wrong and yet instead of changing themselves, they're trying to change everything else
 
Thanks for speaking out against SOPA.
 
So, in the spirit of freedom of speech, can you see about contacting +TWiT about restoring a recently pulled episode of +Tech News Today that contained a clip of a "banned" song made by MegaUpload?
 
+Nandlal Shah
There is always a way around things and I currently use VPNs and sometime Tor
But the idea here in Iran is to have what is called national-Internet and that means people in Iran are being cut from WWW completely :(
 
Guys, DON'T forget about the #NDAA act. Make sure the senators/congressmen that voted for these two bills never get reelected.
 
+Digi A I heard that government need to block some contents as they are provocative but that happens in UK as well. Thank goodness you are in biggest democracy so it is not as bad as some countries where government decide for you what is bad and what is good and what is provocative and what is submissive?
 
+Sergey Brin
Meanwhile my government (Iran) blocking access to sites such as G+, google is doing the same thing with blocking some services to Iranian users !
It is only us ( Iranian people ) who are being crushed in the middle :(
 
+Esmaeil Shekouhi Yes, the meaning/implementation of words like "free" or "liberty" is unfortunately as controversial offline as it is online.
 
+Damien Walker maybe it looks like "Communist" because over the control they get, but the origin is completely different and that is pure money, big companies pushing this through because they think they need this to get the money flowing their way.
So it is pure Capitalism using Communist stuff trying to get as much money as they can..
 
Everyone else managed to sign the letter as "co-founders" yet, as ever, Jimmy Wales likes to suppress history and make out he was the sole founder of Wikipedia. Not really the right message for this letter.
 
How about Facebook? Poor Zuck! lol
 
Feels a little movie-esque Sergey. I hope they realise their foolishness and listen to the critics around them in a strong position from which to advise, such as Google.
 
google is the greatest thing since sliced bread in my book these sopa people should list to them
 
"Democratized access to informations..."
Well, thats not entirely true for the place were i live, China. Especially Google should be aware of this.
 
Politics is driven by lobbies. The entertainment industry (Sony, Time Warner, BMG) is a strong supporter for these bills.
 
Thanks again for bringing the weight of your name to this problem +Sergey Brin. Seeing as the RIAA/MPAA types are using the television to try and get people to support this bill (hey, you, want less freedom? thought so!), would it be possible to put a message on google's title page. That would certainly get eyeballs and I think it is important that people know not to vote for the people who vote for SOPA/PIPA/NDAA ever again.
 
China is becoming an economical, and political model. Should this trend go on we are going to see a World Wide Dictatorship before we are old. As some one said long ago, consumerism accomplished what many dictatorships failed to accomplish. The Neuromancer novel by William Gibson is in the end coming real!
 
I think Google can and should do a lot more to combat this type of legislation than it is right now.
 
Soviet from Russia. Just buy the USA. And create Google Country.

P.s. Sorry for my english. :)
Utkarsh
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it would be the beginning of the end of the world's largest democracy - internet
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Maybe consider moving your main infrastructures and headquarters to a country that handles such questions more in your sense. Iceland also requires less cooling...
irish d
 
i never thought it's gonna happen here in the U.S. and it has bipartisan support so it'll most likely pass. they don't listen to the people anymore.

meanwhile i read somewhere that one way to get around this when it gets passed is to use an independent DNS server. is this true?
 
Thank you Sergey, and all of the others who have signed the letter, for saving the internet.... Hats off to you...
irish d
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+Sergey Brin don't you like organizing the world's info. why don't you organize the info as well on all our politicians so we have the information we need come november 2012. basically we want to know what they voted on, their bipartisanship, etc.. at least on critical issues. an objective wikipedia of some sort where we all can add pertinent articles. just give us the template and the fitering options.
 
Don't think SOPA and PIPA should come as such a surprise, Political and Financial agendas usually go hand in hand. The only difference between these two is that Financial agendas also include what could be considered distasteful strategies, including making sure they control who gets to say what, when and where. +Sergey Brin we all applaud your efforts, but i would be best, in my opinion is to find out what their ulterior motives are and exposing them.
 
It's absolutely great to see so many good people of great achievement standing up to the mafia which gained control of our governments a few decades ago, and whose end game is global enslavement and total destruction of human values. In 1930's Germany, Adolf Hitler was able to rise to power because the good men stood quiet. This won't happen again. If you want to get fast on track with the real news, here's your starting place: http://divinecosmos.com/start-here/davids-blog/995-lawsuit-end-tyranny
 
Is there anything we can do to help stop this? I have signed a few petitions but I wonder if there is anything else?
 
I personally need more detailed info. What exactly says the law, what says this new project. Exactly.
 
The copyright lobby is responsible for locking the information and for creating the monstrous subject of software patents.Among others, Microsoft and Hollywood are to blame for this. We need a grass root movement that will demand the abolition of software patents and for the right of information to be free. Pirate parties promote just this as in another level does the occupy wall street movement. Every person has the power to stand up. Freedom and democracy are in decline in the western world. But the people movement can reverse this trend. The Arab revolts showed the way. Let's not forget that the free internet is the most powerful tool against totalitarianism while a controlled internet is a tool for totalitarianism. The stakes are higher than ever. Let's fight for our rights, for our free internet. I hope that in this battle google can be a powerful ally...
 
+Victor Mayoli Write to your congressperson. Write an actual paper letter. Email gets overlooked, but a letter gets a bit more attention. Online petitions are nearly worthless.
 
Very nice. There is something shocking about the fact that a measure that would attack the basic structure of the internet is even being considered. Either they don't get it (which is highly likely) or they don't care (also likely).
 
Perhaps you can direct the Google Brain Trust to propose an alternative that would protect intellectual property for our lawmakers to consider.
 
Google aren't exactly without fault in this area themselves; the whole 'net neutrality' debacle is still a massive cause for concern and has never been answered fully and to my satisfaction by anyone from Google. While I very strongly agree with your post +Sergey Brin and the specific issues it raises, Google's history isn't whiter than white in the wider conversation of preservation of absolute internet equality.
 
how interesting is it? the world is in the fingertipws..
 
For all of those who did nothing. For all of those who vote for the wrong side. Well done - the internet is about to be castrated. If you don't agree with this then please do something. Inform every senator who voted for this that they will not be getting your vote next time around. The bill past with a 2/3 majority. This is a bad day for freedom of speech and those who really make IP. Hint +Moshe Laber, the people who actually make things aren't going to benefit from this. This is about control over what you see and hear, not letting the little guy make a buck.
 
Get 'm bastards, Sergey!
 
WTF, I thought this was not moving forward!! What now?
 
+Sergey Brin Thank you and Google for taking a stand against Internet censorship. SOPA & PIPA are nothing more than bedtime stories told to legislators & content creators by well paid lobbyists for mega-media corporations like Sony. It's deliberate misdirection. We already have laws against copyright infringement but these guys now want us to make it easier (and cheaper) for them to protect their slice of the pie at the expense of EVERYONE'S rights. Screw them with a rusty fork I say.

BTW, where the hell is ZUCKERBERG's name on that list?
 
thank you both LP and SB.
 
Now the guys at South Park studios need to make an episode were "they took our freedoms!"
 
Thank you, Sergey. It's very important, that people of reputate push back hard against such measures.
 
so you are one of the revolitionists! 
 
You might want to add the National Defense Authorization Act to this list while you are at it. It "would give President Obama the ultimate authority to detain American citizens [and anyone else] indefinitely in military custody" without trial. http://www.catholic.org/politics/story.php?id=44055
 
My only thing, is why is this not on the Google and YouTube front pages? In the past when this kind of thing happened it usually sparked all the sites online to say, turn their pages black with a link to things. Why is there only these little hidden posts complaining this time?
 
Could be worse. A world of ignorance lies beneath the fingertips of those who do not choose well...
 
Like others have said, a Google Doodle would def be appropriate here. I understand why business wise a black-out might not be wise but why not maybe turn the background of the Google homepage completely black and maybe even the search results page along with the logo changing. This is a HUGE deal.
 
You are starting to know human been nature...it is the same all over the world. Humans want power and control over other persons. Very few can control this impulse, I hope you can.
 
Thank you and your colleagues for their support - this is an important issue and DC needs to understand that pandering to a few is not in the best interest of the people.
 
Governments are scared of the power of free people.
 
the core of these two bills are about money. meant in the nicest possible way, i'm surprised you are astonished
 
I am a musician. I regularly see my recordings copied without permission, distributed on the internet, and abused. (A Japanese toilet company once used one of my recordings to advertise a self-raising toilet seat online. I saw no royalties, of course.)

And … I strongly oppose SOPA and PIPA. They will not help me, or other artists. They are draconian, utterly misconceived, and show a profound ignorance on the part of the media industry about how the internet works — and about how their own customers think.

I am an artist, and I say, "Not in my name!"
 
Why be surprised that the US is among Syria, China, Iran in internet policies. Check out what other companies still have the death penalty.
 
+Paul Cantrell
Sorry to hear that
I think the only way to the problem of copyright is the people's wisdom of the state of art
In the sense that they would appreciate the work of art willingly 
 
If you are looking for an 84th signature, add my name to the list!
 
SOPA (HR 3261) was introduced by Patrick Leahy, Lamar Smith, Charles Grassley and John Conyors... Elections are coming fast. Remenber these names...
 
Even though I do not live in the United States, I am to shocked at the actions of Congress and the fact that they are even thinking about passing this bill. I wish I was able to travel down to the US and help in blocking this bill from being ratified.
 
hey everyone. my name is Nicholas (a.k.a. Santa Claus) I am new to this circle thing. A typewriter is all I've used in the North Pole. Add me to your circles! Merry Christmas! (Almost)
 
If this passes it will just cause DNS alternatives like namecoin to take off. Another Internet could form on top of the existing Internet. I'm optimistic that eventually all oppressive governments fail.
 
Thank you, Sergey, for speaking out on this.
 
Incredible comment and such a fine line to walk running a company as powerful as Google. I am a true believer in the power of information and how it is and will continue to make the world a better place for everyone.
 
Aside from the similarities to totalitarian regimes, what bothers me most in this proposed legislation is the fact that it is a complete reversal of due process.
 
1984 was NOT meant to be an instruction manual.
 
+Moshe Laber - "You made your billions off the backs of IP owners, start giving it back, then we will listen to you."

I don't understand what that has to do with SOPA. Making billions of dollars in profit has nothing to do with Google's right and responsibility to be concerned about what could well result in massive infringement on due process and free speech.

And should I point out the irony of you writing "... then we will listen to you." after confirming with your very comment that you'd listened to (or rather read) him? ;)
 
I hope Google and Sergey Brin do everything they can to stop this. It looks to be the first steps towards the type of censorship that they pulled out of China over. Shut down Google searches for a day, see how they feel about that :P
 
Looks like a US revolution is on its way, if history is any guide. Thank you for supporting free speech, Mr Brin. +Sergey Brin
 
"If a nation values anything more than freedom, it will lose its freedom; and the irony of that is that if it is comfort or money, then it will lose that too." ~Somerset Maugham
 
Good job Sergey using the Arab spring example to point out how censorship has the opposite effect, it actually creates tension. Some politicians should first work on a budget, then spend time on reenacting The Matrix -- Agent Smith: "What good is a phone call, If you're unable to speak?"
 
Thank you Sergey. By all means go ahead and decline access to Google to to all Congress IP addresses for a day or two, that would be a powerful message.
 
I am in the Military and I can say that I would rather the elected officials in Washington work to secure my and my brothers in arms futures than this BS. While I do not agree with all information being free for everyone to see, I believe that this goes to far. Everyone needs to write to their elected officials and make sure that this is voted down!

And make sure that they work to balance the budget..in the constitution I believer, protect the boarder.. again in the constitution, and make sure that the people (like me) who fight to gives these egg heads in Washington the ability to even debate things like this the ability to provide for our families and to protect ourselves when we are down range!

Thanks
 
Thank you Sergey for sharing this important message. The implications of such legislation are very frightening.
 
"...Yahoo, Wikipedia, and Twitter" - that's not fair - Facebook also should be in list.
 
Well said Sergey. I believe that a protest action such as halting access to essential core internet services from companies such as Google, facebook, Amazon, Twitter etc for a day would get these politicians attention and would get the attention of the American people to see the real impact of this. Action speaks louder than words.
 
Yes it has transformed access to information. However, in no sphere are there bigger monopolies. Google owns search, Ebay owns auctions, Facebook owns social networking and Amazon owns online shopping. You don't get such extreme monopolies in regular businesses.
 
Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. (Benjamin Franklin)
 
Yip, quite right; Google pulled-off the biggest smoke and mirrors scam on earth. True the information might be there.., but Google pull the strings: Hello Big Brother!
 
That Benjamin Franklin 'quote' changes a little every time I see it. LOL
 
Sergey isn't exaggerating the threat to us all.
 
Mr. Sergey~I stand in amazement as to how the copyright laws would play a role at all, honestly. There are no laws in the government of this country if they do not like them: especially when it benefits themselves, and if it does not, they change it. We are an opressed nation, and have been made to be in their form.
 
we don't need no censorship,
we don't need no thought control,
leave us netizens alone !
 
There needs to be a "-1" on Google Plus.
 
+Christian Fourie Wat? I think you need a little Malcolm X: “If you're not careful, the newspapers will have you hating the people who are being oppressed, and loving the people who are doing the oppressing.”
― Malcolm X
 
I don't think I can Plus-1 +Holly Henry's post enough. Frankly, when I read that post on Ars, this morning, it sickened me.
 
Sergey,

I find your post an interesting one, but like most of Internet discourse surrounding the issue of SOPA, I find it imbalanced.

I’ll begin with a triviality – you have deliberately omitted the role of Facebook in the democratisation of information access. Quite why, one can only assume that you do not like the pivotal role it played in important events such as the recent Arab Spring, or that Mark Zuckerberg has not signed that statement. It is probably more likely that as you are a competitor of Facebook, you are rather more concerned with it continuing to outplay Google in the US display market. One would only hope that it is either of the latter two reasons, but nonetheless this is a flawed omission. As a person of high stature and responsibility, attempting to offer a balanced statement on freedom, I find it quite bizarre.

Secondly, I am intrigued by the attack on SOPA from the point of view of freedom of speech, when actually it might be more useful to approach this with regard to copyright (which SOPA apparently primarily seeks to tackle) and the problem of copyright that Google exacerbates.

I am from the UK. I cannot claim to have read the full details of SOPA from a legal standpoint. However, I feel I’ve found enough information to make a few points about the issues; it does seem like an unworkable plan that will have little practical application. I do not support the bill. I do not support your position either.

That information flow is a force for good I cannot disagree with. The rapidity of being able to access information at a fraction of its previous cost is something that will almost help humanity in the long term.

However, to the contrary, the freedom makes many industries, particularly creative ones, haemorrhage at a rate that cannot be seen as healthy. One of the clear reasons for this problem appears to be in Google services and social media. YouTube is a service so virulent with copyright that I can find almost any song that I listen to on any other service, and listen to it on repeated playback with no interruptions – and quite often at the sacrifice of quality.

The claim of course, is not to blame the technology, but to blame the uploader. Often times, it seems to be to blame the creator, or the legal distributor of that creator, for being old school, or not understanding that technology has moved on. In most of these cases, there will almost certainly be a claim to the degree that lawmakers simply have their head up their own asses.
While I enjoy this freedom myself, I notice that it hurts others. I work for a company whose revenue streams are quite dependent on the newsstand sale of consumer magazines. It is notable that the decline of large consumer titles is not only because of the free alternative of information on the Internet, but more likely, due to the virulent problem of piracy that eats into an industry. People have criticised the music industry for not understanding the technology and the democratisation of information. I fear people will only criticise the magazine industry for much the same reasons. However, I very much doubt many of those critics will have a particularly informed view of how these industries make money, and how free information flow, by in large, doesn’t.

If a photographer pictures a beautiful model, and sells that picture to a consumer magazine, they both earn a living. If these pictures are sold via magazine to a buying public, then jobs exist. If websites simply take what isn’t theirs and distribute such imagery on the Internet, then there is no cause to buy a magazine for its unique selling point. There is no cause to have the photographer and no cause to have a model. Without any of these things, there is no cause to have the website that stole the imagery either, since there will be no content to steal.

This circle is not one of creative freedom. In this example, there is no creativity presented by the Internet at all: merely theft. The Internet takes away the requirement of artists being paid for their work. This can be seen as damaging for art.
This scenario also paints a dangerous picture of creative plateaus rather than creative freedom. Creative freedom is almost certainly more likely to exist in a world where creatives do not need to be concerned about money. In the current set up, entertaining creatives earn money so they do not need to be concerned about it – so that they can concentrate on what they are paid so handsomely to do: entertain people. If there is no money left for such creativity, then people will always have to work at the same as being entertaining creative – something that will in all likelihood damage their ability to be creative. I have attempted, amongst other things, to write novels and create entertaining art – and while I feel some achievement in what I have done, I will not be nearly be wholly satisfied with it until I can focus on it almost wholly. I cannot do that while I work uncreatively the majority of my waking hours.

What is Google’s role in this? Although it may not realise the virulence of the problem, Google simply distributes content it finds, no matter who the publisher. Rarely can it know the creator – only the uploader. Without knowing the creator, it has little ability to exclude the doppleganger ‘creator’ (the uploader of copyrighted content) from search results. Instead, it determines to rank websites that it can crawl and understand authority often better than the initial content creators. While it has taken recent steps to correct this problem, I still know this system to be flawed. In some realms it is deeply unjustified. The market of men’s magazines and websites has very few content creators, yet very many published sites. It has come to be that through distribution networks that cross link back and forth while using 3rd party copyrighted content, new websites have outgrown the originators (a problem I alluded to earlier). You might say the originators had their head up their ass. You should say the new contenders were outlaws.

What irritates me about all of this is that it is apparently easy to get content removed by DMCA request, when actually it isn’t. It is in fact incredibly difficult to get content removed from Google using DMCA, and sometimes, it just isn’t worth the immediate return on investment. I have looked through websites which have entire libraries of copyrighted content, with no signs of accreditation, then considered the process I have to go through to have it removed. First of all, the webmaster probably won’t listen to my threats, thus I will have to consult lawyers. They will charge such high sums for each bit of content listed, that it makes no economic sense to legally challenge it on the micro level required.

If the webmaster does not remove content, then I have the ability to have the content removed by following the steps at www.google.co.uk/dmca.html. However, you will note upon reading this documentation that it is a fairly lengthy process, it will almost certainly require expensive lawyers (again) and then that finally, you will possibly have the Internet PR disaster of having your copyright request filed and published on the Internet at: www.chillingeffects.org. I’ve looked through the process, considered a copyright infringer who was quite clearly in a heavily damaging position for one of our brands, but felt paralysed by this final point. If I was to get this removed, our brand would probably gain equity, only to have it knocked back by the complaint being pulled apart online. For most many media workers placed in this situation, the status quo and slow ebb of equity is a lesser evil than online humiliation, thus we have a slow death of authoritative media via copyright infringement.

I do not feel Google does enough in its power to control copyright. It states that it acts as a provider of information, not a mediator. It is also the most common method of gaining information online. People give trust to this colossal brand and respect its hyper-intelligent sorting process. It is time that Google woke up to this level of respect and acted in a manner which wasn’t so disrespectful to common law.

As I have mentioned, I do not support SOPA, but I do not support Google or outright opponents who make statements such as those you have made above. I believe there must be a common ground of compromise where we do not just blindly pursue ‘freedom’ which is in fact anarchy, and that we do not pursue ‘control’ that is in fact in violation of freedom of speech – that there must be a technology created that does a better job of realising the source of creativity, of the expenditure of content rather than a misused reproduction. We cannot have a creative economy that is a spiralling vampire, sucking itself dry at a quickening rate because of continuing enhancements to services of free distribution. The services must realise the role that they are playing in these issues, and they must react to them.

Thank you for reading.
 
+James Carson Firstly if you can't put it simply you do not understand the subject well enough. You wrote a whole post not a comment. Sergey wrote three paragraphs stating his case for signing the open letter while you respond with accusations that he did not speak on behalf of other companies? Are you serious?

Secondly are you telling me this bill will only affect copyright breaking sites and the burden will not be passed onto others? Chase the offending copyright law breaking websites in other countries and lobby a change of law there but please leave our blood bought freedoms alone so that our values may serve as an example to other nations! I do not trust any government priest or queen filtering out my content! I would like to think for myself according to my own conscience based on the sum total of #content even if it seems that lies get an even footing.

This bill may have legal or even righteous motives but if passed will come against the foundations of freedom and privacy simply because 'man in power' by definition is self centred and this is why truth is best protected not through prohibition of an iron fist but through freedom of speech - for wisdom is proved right by all her children and I would like to interpret the world through the many colours, opinions and perspectives - be it for or against. Greedy Hollywood is pursuing a utopian dream by trying to operate a story telling business at 100% efficiency. The rest of the world needs time to catch up to the US copyright laws.
 
I have posted this on my facebook account:

"The Wall Street moguls need to find another way to stop piracy, not by censoring the Internet. They seem to forget when they (the movie moguls) had censorship and they fought against it."

I was listing to an interview on CNN earlier today with Google's Chairman about doing business in China. Google is not operating in China, just in Hong Kong since they have no censorship there.

I am a free thinking Canadian, and proud of it. I lived in England until I was 17, and I found there was a tendency in England and Wales to make sure you stay in your place (class). Since moving to Canada I have never felt that restriction.

My daughter is married to an American, so I visit the United States quite a bit. In fact I have been visiting since 1960, I find that Americans are a little more English that the Canadian in their thinking.

Censored learning has never worked in the world in the past. Think of how Christianity tried to restrict scientific thinking in the Dark Ages, and it was not until the Italian Renaissance, the age of Enlightenment that people began to explore the world in search of new lands and wealth.

We would never have devised the Internet Age with such restricted thinking. It is ironic that the same Religious groups want the restrictions on the net; but they all use it for their own purpose.

China would pass North America in a flash, if they would take the blinders of there people. The only thing that keeps their education going at the moment, is that China sends millions of students overseas to learn all they can. A large percentage of them go back, because they are not allowed to stay in the counties they have taken their higher Education in.

A free thinker has to have freedom to think. I am always coming up with new ideas at my age (71), with such things as the alternate theory to the Big Bang, and a who new way of using the Internet to conduct business, or Governments for that matter.

Mind you I will direct my ideas at the small Entrepreneurs. They are the people that make the Commerce Engine of the world tick. Think about it, it was the small Chinese and Indians that took away the manufacturing jobs of the Blue Collar workers of North America.

If I was controlled by Big Churches/Mosques/Temples, Big Businesses, Big Labour, or Big Government ... I would not be able to think like I do, and keep coming up with new ideas.

Ask yourself where are the most inventions made? I say the Northwest, down to Monterey, and the Northeast of North America. I also believe Great Britain is still making a big contribution. Mostly in giving free thinking Education to the world.

So my American friends ask you Senators to not introduce their own Stop Online Piracy Act [SOPA] law ... or they will kill the goose that is laying the Golden egg.
 
Exacto, la www es la materialización del derecho real para todos al conocimiento. Puede parecer una obviedad, pero hace 15 años era solo un deseo. Ahora es la realidad del principio de una era.
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+Peter Malaczynski I'm not that serious no. I just find it amusing that he omitted Facebook - (you can't deny that's a strange omission), and that no one seems to think the flagrant disregard for copyright on the internet is never a bad thing. That's all I'm really hearing from the white noise surrounding this bill.

What I've written I do believe in and feel it should be raised, whether or not it should have been in response to Sergey's comments is another matter.
 
Personally i think they are making things worse by trying to block and seize pirate web sites.

The internet piracy is like a hydra chop off one head and 2 will take its place, instead of seizing, blocking and other counter piracy methods why not try to make piracy useless !!!

People pirate because the stuff its expensive (w7 costs more than one month's salary in my home country lets see how many kids buy it), its easy'er, faster and its FREE.


I could go on but it would take a while :D
Pablo F
 
Здравствуйте! Вы знаете, по моему Google иногда самокритично выдает поисковые результаты. Вот пример на результат "гугл ты лапочка"

http://www.google.ee/search?gcx=w&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8&q=%D0%B3%D1%83%D0%B3%D0%BB+%D1%82%D1%8B+%D0%BB%D0%B0%D0%BF%D0%BE%D1%87%D0%BA%D0%B0

Первый же результат: "Я тебе не лапочка, скотина тупая"
Может быть, правда привить Гуглу юмора? :)

С уважением,
Pablo F.
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Dont forget the PirateBay and WikiLeaks, they are on the Web too!
 
Sergey, you can help even more by putting this information on the front page of Google so that everyone in the country knows what these evil or misguided people are trying to do to the Internet
 
Its hard to imagine how the world existed without google!...sometimes
 
Please make Google's voice against these bills more visible. Right on the Google home page and all search results where those who don't pay attention and don't understand the threat will perhaps take notice.
 
Yeah it is true, the world wide web has amazingly transformed in the last twenty years or so. Many people including me just can't believe this transformation we all witnessing right now.
 
Will the SOPA and PIPA affect countries apart from USA (like India or UK) too?
 
Thank you for all that you do. Lets fight this hard...Just found out about it today.
 
Dear Sergey,how about a new sharing space? Why only Google+,Facebook,Orkut ?THINK SOMETHING 'NEW'!!! Thanks!
 
google represents so much to me, it would take forever. I will say I am a "Techno 'tard", thanks to google I am not left behind. Keep fighting & I will too. I might be "anybody, even a nobody", but strength in numbers! I am an activist as much as possible. Seeing you all fight keeps me motivated in my own little battles, & to participate in the world.
I depend on google to participate on the internet.
Everyone keep the fire. You Rock!
 
Thanks Sergey, your vision is on target brother.
 
The burning question is though; "Can Sergey overcome the recent Angry Birds defeat?" LOL You guys have led us all so far. TYSVM
 
I can't believe that's possible in a "free" country like the US!!!
 
Very well said, nobody, no matter how rich or poor, how powerful or weak, under whichever reason or circumstance, shall restrict free access of information.
 
I was wondering if google could add a next and previous buttons on your youtube, I use youtube to follow lectures and it is difficult to follow those clips which have parts.

Thanks.
 
I think you should always be proud that you dared to stand for human rights against the machine. You all have given otherwise silent nations a choice and the drive to stand for themself against whatever oppresses them. You should be commended instead to be condemned ... Giving a person a voice is a powerful tool that when networked to others can actually be a voice to be reckoned with. Just remember ... if good men remain silent then evil WILL prevail... Merry Christmas and GodSpeed
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heeeeey googleboy thank you for the searchmachine
 
Please check out our new political social network http://wethepeopleunited.com

Whether you are a student in an internet cafe in the developing world or a head of state of a wealthy nation, the power to change the world is at your fingertips.
 
In the next 20 years about 80% of the world population will have access to internet information. More than likely we will learn more from internet than any other source.
 
don't say the "f" word!
 
I am against the Government controlling the internet. The intternet belongs to the people.
 
Fabuleux cette entrée dans le troisième millénaire. Le "www" est la plus grande révolution depuis l'invention de l'imprimerie. Une des plus belles aventures humaines avec ses joies et ses peines.
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What are the chances that the big sites, Google, Amazon, Twitter, etc. will really support a 24 hour blackout? Because personally, I will go 24 hours without all the things I normally enjoy online if there is a chance it will have some impact.
 
Sou um admirador do Google, muitas das vezes até o vejo como um personagem único, como se tivesse vida própria como se fosse um autônomo e esqueço que por trás existem muitas pessoas trabalhando duro para que as coisas saiam como esperado na ponta...parabéns Google!
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Yes, Yes, a thousand times YES. Wonderful and incredible, too much to truly absorb or even access...
 
I agree with you and the other signers, what the government is trying to do may very well solve issues related to copyrights and the like, but it will also destroy free speech, one of the very things that the government is supposed to protect, and the beauty of the internet.
 
It will have worldwide consequences, if the bills make it through the congress! Other states and countries will likely follow the path the US has taken. The content creators and copyright holders would increase their lobby work and after some time we'll see the result: Global censorship!

It is true that piracy and copyright infringement is really problem, but it cannot be that a government looses common sense and legalize wishes of the whole movie and music industry... the copyright holders completely ignored the internet as a distribution channel... They have no other marketing schemes than the archaic distrubution of their overpriced material... actually they are the real culprit here... because of them the whole content piracy flourished.

I hope that some politicians don't stuff their wallets with money from lobbists and have something left of the idea, that politics is for the people and the country in first place.
 
The US isn't a democracy, it's a "plutocracy" - you get to vote for one of two groups who both do what the super-rich want, not the people. Very very few people could hope to fix this - you'd need a huge pile of money, sensational use of technology, and a social conscience. (Is that you, Google Chiefs? Want to upgrade from "Don't Be Evil"?)
 
True.internet has transformed the way we live.But still students like me can not afford internet except in college campuses
 
The Net has opened up a new world. Harnessing to the maximum is the challenge Google and others would face.
 
We all are facing a new whole era in Internet; due this we need to deeply think our time and our role in it.
Philosophy and Reasoning can deliver us the esence and forms of paths not even known today. The ACTA / SOPA laws are triggering the first war on information, and after it ends, how can we (Google) stand victorious?
We need to start making information and markets philosophy. It's not a joke, and I would love to be a part of such activity inside Google - I'm still outside but I will be a part of it soon), because we need the dream that started with a paper some years ago, to keep going.
Freedom and information are closely related, so we (Google) are not for a Mission anymore, we are here for a Cause.
Next step, gather to think and start to work at IF.
Google+ jasarmientomx (JUAN ANTONIO SARMIENTO)
Also twitter:@jasarmiento09 and FB https://www.facebook.com/juansarmiento68
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/jasarmientomx
 
Hey Sergey!,I love your pic's and your insight of today's extraordinary dilemma we all now face. The times are changing and we must stand vigilant !! I will live vicariously through your beautiful photo's
 
This is such an important issue. Sergey, thanks for picking up the banner.
 
If they lied to us, and brought us to a war with lies; I can only imagine what they will be willing to do with something like SOPA/PIPA act. Lets stop this now!!!
 
my grandpa said the other day during the stat of the union.... how can a man lie the way the politicians of today do? its abhorrent to reason... to rational principle based reasoning
 
you rock google :)- .......freedom of speech...................
 
Google is awesome. They believe in open research and attract some of the best and most creative people to work with them. In a world where most people are bogged down by too much information if you learn to use Chrome & Google Search you can get just what you need to answer a complex question. Sadly we live in a world that seeks easy answers for complex challenges. I suppose people are just too lazy to see and learn. I am also not sure why some people think that they have nothing to learn as if they were born "knowing it all".
 
The first sentence is the world in a nutshell.
 
I use Google and the Internet but i wish for a period where i can sit under a tree and converse or chat about topics and search by holding hands or making faces......
 
Before it seemed Spirituality, Society n others worked with Government now they have to work with Internet in the future AI. So yes their is lot of metamorphosis happening. Internet is crying out for discussions, research and other big words so the change and result would be correct. Lets see....
 
Have you herd of the y2k virus, the internet is its ultimate savior
 
I have to say that, all things considered, you guys have done a great job. Especially in terms of having the ability to develop and focus and dream and maintaining a steady, aggressive pace to achieve it.I don't mean this as a flowery compliment, but I mean it as a well deserved one. Keep up the great work!
 
I fully agree with you. The doors to knowledge and information were opened by Google, Wikipedia, Yahoo, Twitter etc.. Don't allow them to be closed.
 
 
Hello boss I have a idear about Notbook the computerof further I want totell you and do you want to know that?I don't know youer email and I knowyouer's google X, that's so exciting and great Please email to jerry123.wu@gmail.com(I am a college student frome China,my english so bady.hope you can understand my mean
 
Si lo pudieran traducir al espanol mejor para gue la mayoria le diera su opinion
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