Today, blogs, sites, and services across the web went dark to protest the Stop Online Piracy Act and PROTECT IP Acts. Wikipedia closed its English site, the Internet Archive went dark, and even Google put a black bar over its famous logo to protest the legislation. In the anime community, the ANN crew placed black bars over sections of their site, and numerous fan-sites and blogs blacked out, urging readers to phone their congressmen.
In addition, 4.5 million people signed Google’s petition against SOPA. To put this in perspective, fully 1.5 percent of the American population voiced their opposition. This was, according to The Guardian, the largest online protest in history.
Their efforts, for the most part weren’t ignored. Today, seventeen new senators voiced opposition to PROTECT IP, six of which were former sponsors of the bill. As the hours tick by, and the peoples’ voices grows louder, more and more members of government turn against the act.
In addition, President Obama announced that he would veto SOPA if it comes across his desk.
The battle of the bills isn’t over just yet, though. PROTECT IP will come to a vote on January 24, and hearings on SOPA will begin anew next month. The tide is certanly turning, but pressure needs to remain on those in power at this point. The message of opposition must continue to be loud, lest the masses forget the chilling black pages and the messages of warning that came with today. The day popular support dies, is the day that the opposition loses.