The Internet is a truly special innovation.
So there's an obvious reason that Hollywood and the corporate music industry have been lobbying to throw chains on it. The Web has shattered their stranglehold on entertainment access by introducing an exciting new format for sharing information and content.
But anti-piracy legislation is more than just a desperate protectionist scheme. It also smacks of the authoritarianism our leaders are quick to criticize in countries like Iran and China.
In fact, the Stop Online Piracy Act and Protect IP Act endorsed by Hollywood would mean implementing the very same Net-restricting technology currently used in those despotic nations.
Never mind the "slippery slope" argument that this type of censorship will eventually bring an end to free speech on the Web. It is enough that these bills will radically restrict, alter and stifle Internet content if implemented.
We, the people, have more to lose by this legislation than Hollywood has to gain.
Let's keep the Internet free.
(Staff Writer Bruce Siwy can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)