By now you should be at least partially familiar with the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect IP Act (PIPA), a pair of bills that would give big media companies even more power on the Internet than they already have (and if this is the first you're hearing of this, read this, check out our SOPA and PIPA coverage, and Google both terms before retreating under your rock). Naturally, the Internet community is pretty pissed, organizing boycotts of companies who support the proposed regulation, and urging less vocal supporters to publicly denounce the Acts.
Game publisher Electronic Arts (EA) finds itself caught in the crossfire, if you can call it that. According a report in Forbes, EA, Sony, and Nintendo have each pulled their explicit support of SOPA, but since EA is a member of the Entertainment Software Association, the publisher technically supports the legislation, even if it's not being vocal about it.
There's a petition on Change.org strongly urging EA to speak out against SOPA while simultaneously warning the publisher it will "regret" messing with the Internet. It reads:
The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) is a tool that protects monopolists and targets sites relied on by small-time businesses, like indie game developers and artists, condoning disproportionate action against these sites for any evidence of copyright infringement from any of their users. If EA wants to protect their monopoly so badly, we need to let them know that they will lose far more business by supporting this bill than by allowing indie developers to operate unimpeded. It is obvious that this bill's primary use is to paint a big red bullseye on the main distributors of indie content, protecting the market shares of big-time businesses like Electronic Arts.
EA is a member of the Entertainment Software Association which supports SOPA. It's time for EA to stand up and publicly oppose SOPA. Don't mess with the internet, EA. You will regret it.
Petitions about this thing or that are a dime a dozen, but this one in particular has already amassed over 113,000 signatures and received some media attention. Let's not forget that the Internet community spoke out against GoDaddy for supporting SOPA, and the outrage ultimately prompted the domain registrar to pull a 180. In other words, you and every other Internet user has a voice. If you're opposed to SOPA/PIPA, it takes all of minute or so to sign the petition, which is just one of many things you can do to try and stop the legislation from passing. And if you're not opposed to it, well, carry on then.