US: Major web companies speak out against proposed copyright changes
Copyright on the internet is an important issue, but it can be difficult to determine when an individual or brand has infringed on the property of another person.
And in the online space where theft often amounts to copying information or data it can be even more difficult to patrol.
These and a host of other issues are at the centre of an ongoing dispute which is currently taking place in the United States.
A new copyright bill, which was introduced to the House of Representatives in October, is designed to stop the flow of revenue to so-called "rogue" web sites.
Republican Lamar Smith, the bill's cosponsor, said the new measures within the proposed legislation would "stop the flow of revenue to rogue web sites and ensures that the profits from American innovations go to American innovators".
It would seem that the bill is being supported by those in Hollywood who are mindful of about intellectual property.
But detractors are concerned that the Stop Online Piracy Act could impact the ecosystem of the internet and stifle the very creativity it seeks to promote.
To this end a number of technological companies have come together to voice their opposition to the bill in its current form, including the search engine Google, social network Facebook and games entrepreneur Zynga.
In a joint letter addressed to American senators – it was released to the public this week (November 15) – the brands made it clear they supported the bill's stated goals, but not the manner it proposed to achieve its objectives.
"We are concerned that these measures pose a serious risk to our industry's continued track record of innovation and job-creation, as well as our nation's cyber security," they said.
Companies such as AOL, EBAY, LinkedIn, Mozilla, Twitter and Yahoo also signed the letter and it is believed that congress will take their concerns into consideration when deliberating on the proposed changes.
Posted by Aimee McBride