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

As has been discussed intensively elsewhere on the web for the past several weeks and months, the Stop Online Piracy Act and Protect IP Act currently before Congress are ill conceived and, if passed, would have terrible consequences for the internet as we know it.

At the heart of the matter is the question how society should best balance the conflicting needs of copyright holders and the general public in the era of the internet, when co-creation and sharing of content are increasingly becoming the cultural norm. It’s a complex question that requires careful consideration and moderation, not the kind of knee jerk approach manifested in these bills. As a startup company that lives and breathes on the internet, we are particularly worried about these developments.

In this brief talk, Clay Shirky gives a bit of historical background and explains the main issues with the two bills:

For more information on the topic and to take action, check out Wikipedia’s FAQ, which includes links to several recent media articles on the topic.

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