Thursday, January 26, 2012

Wil Wheaton Talks About SOPA, PIPA With The Young Turks

Recently the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) was stopped in it's tracks by a general outpouring of distaste for the legislation from the people and companies across the Internet who felt that the act was too far reaching and draconian in its scope. Many voiced the concern that it was a naked attempt by the entertainment industry to flex it's muscles and could be used to cripple or stifle perceived competition for the more traditional distributors of information, entertainment and content. Actor Wil Wheaton was interviewed by Cenk Uygur on The Young Turks and Wheaton discusses the problems he sees with the legislation.

Wheaton is of course familiar to many from several movies and his role on the television series Star Trek: The Next Generation as well as more recently as "evil Wil Wheaton" on The Big Bang Theory but he is also a very good blogger in his own right at

I was interested in the points he made when talking with Uygur from his personal point of view concerning being one who does create his own work and wanting to protect that work which of course makes perfect sense. He makes a great point when discussing how one writer seemed to couch the debate as "you are either for artists' intellectual property rights, or you are against SOPA/PIPA" when the problems run much deeper than that. Personally I see (and definitely agree) that the work of people and companies that create this work must be protected but not by allowing a small group a vested interest in protecting themselves by being able to snuff out the work of others that is seen as encroaching on their turf. The problem with SOPA was that it potentially would allow one or more of the largest media companies to simply remove their much smaller competition if they felt that was in their best interest by dismissing them from the Internet without real due process.

More importantly, what do you think about SOPA and Wheaton's remarks? I've been following him for quite a while on Twitter (he can be found at @wilw) and except for a misguided allegiance to the Los Angeles Kings he does always tweet interesting stuff and has almost 2 million followers. You can also find him on Youtube at wilwheaton.

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