SOPA & PIPA

5 Apr

Hollywood fights Internet protests with... TV ad, billboard, radio spot

Image by Nate Anderson

The introduction of the bills SOPA and PIPA triggered an almost instantaneous reaction among my friends on Facebook. Clearly, Hollywood and the Music Industry should prioritize on communicating a message to the 18 to 24 year old college students. For the most part being a college student consists of second guessing everything you are told and really questioning the credentials of basically anything and everything, especially when it will have an effect on how an individual will come to receive entertainment.

It comes as no surprise that most of the college students that I know were opposed to the ideas that SOPA and PIPA had to offer. However those who cried that these bills are meant to limit the freedom of speech must understand the difference between freedom of speech and illegal acts of piracy. Yes, freedom of speech is an important right but once it is taken too far it becomes slander and illegal. So like slander, downloading anything that has a copyright attached to is illegal. Freedom of speech on the internet has escalated into including pirated content; therefore like slander it should be illegal to have such a freedom when it causes more harm than good. It is important to communicate that having free things is convenient, but just because it’s convenient doesn’t make it right.

Another focus for communication could be the opinions of artist whose content has been out there for free.  It would be important to communicate with them and let them know that something is being done to help prevent crime against illegal entertainment. For these artists, who dedicate their lives to entertaining others, it is not fair to have their life work infringed. It would also be a good idea to perhaps try and get some artist involved in the SOPA and PIPA movement. For those who would argue, but they already have enough money why should we pay them for songs or movies? The answer is simple, because it is illegal and morally wrong. If we don’t keep up the laws of morality here, where else is it okay to let our morals and ethics go? With every illegal crime we condone, the social construct falls apart because there is no support for morality.

SOPA and PIPA legitimatize that copyright infringement is a serious crime taking place every single day and prevention is absolutely necessary. The best means of communicating this message is through the means of Public Relations because after all the concentration of PR is communication of ideas to different publics.

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