The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

TFL joining the blackout to protest SOPA and PIPA

Floydm's picture
Floydm

TFL joining the blackout to protest SOPA and PIPA

I'm sure most folks have heard by now that tomorrow many websites will be "blacking out" in protest of SOPA and PIPA, a pair of bills that the US Congress is debating that would drastically change the way internet sites are regulated. The Fresh Loaf will be participating too, though I'm wimping out a bit by letting folks continue through to the real site after they experience the STOP SOPA splash screen.

I don't want to politicize this site, but there is pretty clear consensus on both sides of the aisle that SOPA and PIPA would do irreparable harm to internet sites like TFL. This site has never been in the business of making money of "piracy," but occasionally folks have shared or linked to copyrighted material here, which I remove as quickly as it is brought to my attention.

My understanding is that SOPA would make me legally liable for damages if any copyrighted material was posted here even if I was unaware of it or took it down as soon I noticed it. Could I continue to let the community self-moderate itself under such legal framework? I'm not sure I could. Would this site continue to thrive if every post or comment had to be pre-screened? Probably not.

Please consider taking a moment to inform yourself about SOPA and PIPA and contacting your congressperson or senator to let them know that you are against these bills.

Thank you for your support.

-Floyd

ehanner's picture
ehanner

I'm glad to hear you are taking a stand on this. I know we go out of our way to avoid politics but this issue is so serious and harmful to the use of the Internet it must be shouted loud and clear. Good for you Floyd.

Eric

MichaelH's picture
MichaelH

Flashing up some silly protest screen before you can enter the site is as far from joining the blackout as Cleveland is from Moscow. Shut it down for 1 day and make a stand. Like I told Floyd in a pm, this law will ultimately shut him down.

Michael

suave's picture
suave

I second that.

Floydm's picture
Floydm

I would appreciate hearing if other community members feel the same way as you two do, preferring to see TFL participate in the full blackout on your behalf rather than a partial blackout.  As I wrote to Michael in reply to his PM:

I am not by temperament an activist, take no joy in political grandstanding or acts of civil disobedience, and would rather not inconvenience anyone.  I prefer sharing information than withholding it, even if only temporarily.  But I will post a follow up comment and if enough people feel as you do, go for the full black out.  

So, folks, please let me know what you think. Ultimately it is your conversations that would be disrupted tomorrow to make the point. Do you feel that that is appropriate at this time?

-Floyd

Elagins's picture
Elagins

we're blacking out tomorrow as well in support of the protest. back online on Thursday 1/19

Stan Ginsberg
www.nybakers.com

ehanner's picture
ehanner

I'm glad to see support for a shut down. Take a stand and turn the lights out for a day.

Eric

Floydm's picture
Floydm

Yes, credit to Eric for bringing this to my attention in the first place and suggesting TFL do something for it.  I pushed back and recommended the partial black out, which I've said I will reconsider if there is considerable community support a fuller black out.  

-Floyd

jcking's picture
jcking

I say Black Out, save a couple cents on the electric bill.

Jim

loydb's picture
loydb

If you're going to go black, go black.

 

loydb's picture
loydb

... and in case it wasn't clear, I think you *should* go black.

 

OldWoodenSpoon's picture
OldWoodenSpoon

for whatever you deem the best way to handle this.  This is your site, and I am your guest.  I'm glad to see that you are taking a stand.    I appreciate that you have taken all of us, your guests, into consideration in your choice for tomorrow.  I think your assessment of these stifling bills is accurate, and I do hope that neither will pass, and not just for the sake of The Fresh Loaf site.

OldWoodenSpoon

PMcCool's picture
PMcCool

if SOPA passes so I won't stand in the way of you shutting down the site.  Might even do me some good by forcing a temporary stop to my addiction.  ;-)

Paul

Floydm's picture
Floydm

It is also worth adding that well intended but poorly designed legislation ruining a small business is very familiar to Dorota and I. Dorota had a beading hobby that turned into a business and which is now back to being a hobby again because of poorly designed federal legislation.  It is probably best for me to just link to her account of what happened. The business is, for all intents and purposes, moribund now.

-Floyd

gmabaking's picture
gmabaking

"All it takes for evil to prevail in the world is for enough good men to do nothing"  Was that Goethe? Since I'm sure I misquoted, we probably can't get in trouble for that. I strongly believe that if we don't stand up for our values in what seems small, we each lose something--of ourselves and of each other.

LindyD's picture
LindyD

A few seconds of a splash screen is a weak whimper, not a protest.   

Curtaining this website for a day is much more palatable than the type of curtaining planned by SOPA and PIPA.  

There are times when one has to take a stand.  This is one of them.

occidental's picture
occidental

It is a serious issue and I support a full blackout.  If it gets the message across to someone who is unaware it's worth it.  We'll return to normal baking and blogging after the break.

PhilipG's picture
PhilipG

I think it is sad that you have to make a choice between performing a great service to a group of like minded folks and potentially being held liable for the acts of criminals. Shut 'er down Floyd. We will all be here when it comes back up. IF the morons don't make the Internet illegal or something. 

Floydm's picture
Floydm

Fair enough.  TFL is set up to go into full blackout mode as of midnight Pacific Time.  If anyone wants to contact me, you know my email or we can meet up on the TFL Facebook page.

-Floyd

dstroy's picture
dstroy

(unless Facebook goes black too - as that is another site that will be in the same boat!)

TastefulLee's picture
TastefulLee

I am new to the site and to baking bread and this community of kind, passionate and very patient people has been invaluable to me. Thank you Floyd for all you do to keep this site going. I fully support the TFL blackout.

Yerffej's picture
Yerffej

Shut it down Floyd.......it is a very minor form of protest against a very major problem.

Jeff

TastefulLee's picture
TastefulLee

I am new to the site and to baking bread and this community of kind, passionate and very patient people has been invaluable to me. Thank you Floyd for all you do to keep this site going. I fully support the TFL blackout.

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

I am another voice in the crowd saying black out all the way for the day.....maybe I will get something done about the dust bunnies in the corners that keep calling to me :-)

See you all on Thursday

Janet

 

RobynNZ's picture
RobynNZ

As a non-USA participant on your site Floyd I'm pleased to be able to put my hand up for a black out - checking the links in your OP, felt frustrated I have no congressman to call.

Robyn

BakerBen's picture
BakerBen

I don't know much about this blackout but it sounds like the intent is to get peoples attention so they will contact government officials - I am not sure how just supporting Floyd in his decision to go black is really doing much.  Shouldn't we all be complaining to Washington or something?

Just a thought.

Ben

ananda's picture
ananda

Hi Floyd,

being UK-based, I've woken to find this post just now.   So I'm late contacting you

Anyway, just to add my support; you should shut the site down if your livelihood and our liberty is being threatened unfairly.

Best of wishes

Andy

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Just heard about it on our Austrian news... channel "puls 4"    Go for Black!  

I will also go off now and come back to my computer tomorrow.

Edit:  Went back on line to find out where I could voice myself.  Got locked out not having a US address & zip but I was glad to see that those signing in could will have their voices directed to the appropriate districts.  (or am I wrong about this?)   Most citizens don't know who their reps are and that silences them.  

DerekL's picture
DerekL

"I don't want to politicize this site"

Too late, you just did.

loydb's picture
loydb

So I guess you decided against?

Floydm's picture
Floydm

I did not.  I lost power last night (snow) and wasn't able to verify that the site blacked out until now.  Blacking it out now.

-F

tikidoc's picture
tikidoc

Agreed.  I think a good anti-piracy bill is important but from what I have read, this bill goes way too far and is not reasonable.

I'd vote for a black out.

Floydm's picture
Floydm

We are back.  Thank you all for your support and sorry for the inconvenience.  

A number of representatives on both sides of the aisle changed their positions or came out against SOPA/PIPA today. Google alone collected 4.5 million signatures on their anti-SOPA petition.  So I think, and hope, that collectively we made a difference. 

-Floyd 

dstroy's picture
dstroy

For those that are just learning about these bills, this one video is the clearest explanation I have seen of what SOPA and PIPA are, why this site would cease to exist if they passed, and how they affect our collective rights to share online in this or any forum in which users are allowed to post content or comments.

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

dstroy,

Thanks for the TED link.  Good talk both historically and currently explaining what is going on and why.....

Janet

ananda's picture
ananda

Hi Floyd,

I take it that non-US dwellers will not be able to sign Google's petition; is that right?

I just tried, but no success with the zip code, obviously.

Best wishes

Andy

Floydm's picture
Floydm

Yes, I believe the Google petition was US-only since the signatures were being delivered directly to members of Congress.  Many groups worldwide -- such as OpenMedia.ca in Canada -- are voicing their opposition to SOPA and collecting signatures as well.

-Floyd 

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

No inconvenience Floyd. Very encouraging news to hear!  I would say this was one very peaceful demonstration with quite an impact but, as the gentleman in the TED talk stated,  this is just a continuation of what has preceded it....more will be coming our way in the future....

It was very easy sending my representatives an email.  Took less than 10 minutes.  Much easier than in the 'old' days when specific addresses were nearly impossible to find in local phone books....Many sites now list all representatives and their email addresses....easy as pie :-)

Thanks for all you do!
Take Care,

Janet 

hutchndi's picture
hutchndi

I am so glad  that I still have the freedom to post and comment freely on the web!

SOURDOUGH  GOOD!

COMMERCIAL YEAST NOT!

sorry, just had to get that out of my system....