On Wednesday, January 18th we came together against the overreaching proposals of SOPA & PIPA. Although there was no single centralized coordinating entity, there was one principle: freedom of the Internet. It’s important to recognize that this doesn’t mean all content should be free or that piracy is acceptable. People who create with words, pictures and sounds are just as valuable as those who create with code, and all deserve a system which protects both their creativity and their income. But SOPA & PIPA were not meant to be part of this system. They provided too many opportunities for abuse, inherently favored the status quo of big corporations and did not take into account all the changes in the landscape since the DMCA was passed.

By rejecting these bills - and that was absolutely the right thing to do - our community inherited two responsibilities. The first is to remain vigilant and active within politics – be conscious of how you vote, how you spend your money. The second is to work collaboratively with the creative ecosystem to balance rights and revenue. As technologists we cannot simply say “it’s just a platform” – we need to be thoughtful and accountable for how our tools are used.

#BlackoutSOPA doesn’t intend to be the place where you can accomplish either of these goals - instead we recommend you become active in the organizations listed below. At the same time though we’re not disappearing. You’ll be watching and so will we. We’ll keep the technology running so feel free to change your avatar whenever you want. And if needed, we’ll be back with new badges and a call to action.

Thank you for being part of something amazing. We look forward to the future.

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