Keith Ellison opposes SOPA, joins blackout

Congressman Keith Ellison has come out against SOPA.

Rep. Ellison joins Wikipedia, Google, and millions of Americans across the country who are against SOPA, the Stop Online Piracy Act introduced by Rep. Lamar S. Smith (R-Texas). A number of websites around the world have created an Internet "blackout" to protest the bill. Google has censored its logo for American users on the homepage of its search engine and Wikipedia has removed some of its content. The controversy has been so great one Republican told the Washington Post that the bill has become "a dirty word."

In his statement, Rep. Ellison said he opposes the bill because "it would harm internet innovation and jobs."

SOPA aims to address online piracy, according to supporters like the Motion Picture Association of America.

Keith Ellison joined the blackout
Keith Ellison joined the blackout

The legislation would make it easier for the United States Attorney General to "shut down" web sites that allow copyrighted movies, music and TV shows on the Internet without the copyright owners' permission.

Critics, including Ben Huh, the founder of I Can Has Cheezburger, contend that the website will restrict Internet freedom and hurt web site owners and operators who will be forced to monitor their users' content or be shut down.

"Companies like Gmail and Hotmail will have to monitor your email to make sure you're not sending infringing material," Huh said.

In addition to his statement against the bill, Rep. Ellison has joined the blackout and taken his campaign website offline. In its place, Rep. Ellison has added a link calling on constituents to join him in blacking out the Internet.

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