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Wikipedia Piracy Bill

January 18, 2012 by staff 

Wikipedia Piracy BillWikipedia Piracy Bill, Wikipedia’s English home page says, in part, “Right now, the U.S. Congress is considering legislation that could fatally damage the free and open Internet. For 24 hours, to raise awareness, we are blacking out Wikipedia.”

 Any student burning the midnight oil Tuesday may have been disappointed as what has become a primary research tool, Wikipedia, blacked out its Web pages as part of a global protest against anti-piracy legislation making its way through Congress.

“Student warning! Do your homework early. Wikipedia protesting bad law on Wednesday!,” warned Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales on Twitter, and with that, one of the most heavily visited websites began a 24-hour “blackout.”

Google slapped a virtual black tape across the word “Google” on its home page, as if it were muffled, although it continued to be available for search. Social news site Reddit said it will be blacked out for 12 hours, starting at 8 a.m. ET. The metaphor by the protesting sites: To shutter and silence the Internet the same way many in the tech world say will happen if the Stop Online Piracy Act in the House and the Protect IP Act in the Senate move forward.

Google’s protest of proposed anti-piracy legislation includes blacking out its own name on its home search page.

You could still access Wikipedia in Spanish, or French, or German or Russian or many other languages; just not English. “This is going to be wow,” Wales said on Twitter. “I hope Wikipedia will melt phone systems in Washington on Wednesday. Tell everyone you know!”

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