US Congress may not have stomach for another SOPA

The massive online protests from a year ago have stuck in the minds of lawmakers

By , IDG News Service |  IT Management

The spokesman for another lawmaker who opposed SOPA said he sees little momentum for similar legislation in 2013.

Meanwhile, a representative of the Recording Industry Association of America, which pushed for passage of the two bills, said the trade group's focus will be elsewhere moving forward.

"The music business now earns more than half its revenues from an exciting array of digital formats," Jonathan Lamy, an RIAA spokesman, said in an email. "Our core mission is promoting that dynamic marketplace. Beyond that, our attention will be entirely focused on music licensing issues and voluntary, marketplace initiatives."

Opponents of the two bills are looking to engage the public in a dialog about copyright in the coming year, said Tiffiniy Cheng, co-founder of Fight for the Future, a digital rights group. and OpenCongress.org, a congressional watchdog site.

In November, the Republican Study Committee, a group of conservative House Republicans, first published, then retracted, a paper advocating the weakening of some copyright protections, Cheng noted.

"It seems like the SOPA protests and blackout has created an opening for a discussion on copyright reform," she said by email. "We'll be working with groups and the public on a plan in 2013. We're glad there is an opportunity."

Grant Gross covers technology and telecom policy in the U.S. government for The IDG News Service. Follow Grant on Twitter at GrantGross. Grant's e-mail address is grant_gross@idg.com.

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