JotForm takedown shows anti-SOPA hysteria wasn't alarming enough

Secret Service takes down JotForm, lets it up again, still with no explanation


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Top execs at the SOPA-promoting RIAA said over and over that the process of addressing alleged copyright infringements would be open and fair, not the secret-accusations-in-a-back-room affair most SOPA opponents imagined it would be.

All opponents had to go on was the language in the act, which described a process in which those claiming to own copyrights could make accusations to law enforcement agencies, which would go enforce the law without having to validate that the accusations were true or that the accuser actually owned the copyright.

That's all silly politics, right? Propaganda. Hating from the pro, hating from the con.

The process would be ruled by the U.S. legal system, so enforcement would not be random, mysterious, unexplained or capricious. Right?

Apropos of nothing, JotForm is back online.

Jotform is the digital-forms site that was shut down by the U.S. Secret Service Feb. 15 by ordering domain-name registrar GoDaddy to remove from its DNS entries, effectively making it disappear from the Internet.

Jotform got no notice ahead of time that an investigation was going on or that its site would be shut down.

After it was shut down with no explanation of why, according to a blog entry by JotForm cofounder Aytekin Tank announcing the takedown.

Tank and everyone else assumed the reason was an allegation of copyright violations in one of the 2 million forms users have uploaded or created on the site, but didn't hear that from the Secret Service.

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