Trade associations representing US technology industry interests this week attacked a new House of Representatives bill aimed at fighting so-called “rogue” websites, calling it “an alarming step backwards in internet policy” that would create “a thicket of internet regulations containing 16 new legal definitions for evolving internet technology.”
Introduced last week, the bill, HR 3261, called the Stop Piracy Online Act, is intended to increase powers of IP rights holders and law enforcement to take down websites selling counterfeit and pirated products (IPW, US Policy, 27 October 2011).
The tech companies say it would undermine the previously constructed balance between rights holders and internet companies as well as user privacy.
“This is not a bill that targets “rogue foreign websites,” the letter said. “Rather, it allows movie studios, foreign luxury goods manufacturers, patent and copyright trolls, and any holder of any intellectual property right to target lawful U.S. websites and technology companies.”
The tech industry letter is here [pdf]. Signing organisations include the NetCoalition, Consumer Electronics Association, and the Computer & Communications Industry Association.