Think Like an Editor blog by Steve Davis and Emilie Davis, S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, Syracuse University

SOPA: Stop, read and learn

By · Wednesday, January 18th, 2012

Twitter is on fire today with “Stop SOPA”! Well, at least 99% of the people I follow agree with that sentiment, so that’s what I’m seeing.

But I wonder how many really have taken a look at SOPA, and its sister bill, PIPA. Today is an opportunity, if not an obligation, to settle in and do some reading and self-educating about these two pieces of legislation before the House and Senate that are being proposed to regulate online piracy (primarily movies and songs).

Do you — really — know what you’re “stopping”?

The New York Times, my go-to daily, has a good piece today, but there are plenty of others. As you “shop,” consider the backgrounders and updates and not just the screeds for and against, though you can learn from some of this indignation as well.

You may or may not choose to sign the Google petition.

What’s more important: Make today the day you begin to get a handle on some details of this debate if you really haven’t done that yet.

Information is power. So go get some today, and lend a knowledgeable voice to all the noise that is out there. It’s not just where you stand on an issue that counts. It’s whether you speak with some hard-earned authority.




We at the Online News Association (full disclosure… I’m on the board) published a letter detailing our objections to SOPA. I’d encourage people to read that, as well.

Here’s the link: