Congressmen across the US admit they’re not entirely sure which way to vote, after the online encyclopaedia website Wikipedia, amongst others, decided to go on a 24 hour blackout today in protest of the upcoming SOPA and PIPA bills. The website, usually a beaming beacon of intellect and reliable sources, is often where politicians look for answers to topics they are unfamiliar with, such as science, history and politics.
The bills, Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA), have come under fire by many groups opposed to censorship, as if they are passed it is believed that freedom of speech on the internet will be affected. It’s thought that the bills were first proposed by several high profile celebrities, including Rick Santorum and Kenan and Kel.
One senator, John Cornyn (R – TX), admitted that without the Wikipedia site, he was at a loss for where to turn to for fast information, until he realised that the mobile app was still functional.
“Oh thank God. I suddenly had the urge to find out who that guy was in the new Virgin advert – Wikipedia tells me it’s someone called Richard Branson. Oh, right, SOPA.”
Outside of congress, and indeed the US, regular internet users are reacting differently to the blackout of many of their favourite websites. Employers in the financial sector in London are reporting a huge productivity increase since sites like Reddit, as well as popular webcomics like Cyanide + Happiness and XKCD, have gone down, although morale is believed to be down 58% .
Meanwhile, among students, productivity appears to be stable due to the complaints on social networking site Facebook about not being able to complete their dissertations, although the amount of false information in essays is reportedly falling. Journal Nature has announced similar observations in papers submitted by university researchers. Other users are apparently dusting off their old Microsoft Encarta discs, where they can learn about popular topics like the Millennium Bug and Tony Blair’s rise to power.
Older users appear to be confused by matters. Local resident Albert McKillny asks “what soap ever did to congress.” “People nowadays just don’t know nout about hygiene, ya ask me.”
“Is Pippa that nice girl off the Channel 5 weather? She should come back. Never rained when she did the forecasts,” wife Ethel added.
In any case, it is somewhat unclear why congress is struggling to cope with Wikipedia’s blackout, as the Simple English page is still functional.
In all seriousness though folks, SOPA and PIPA are big deals. Our blog would be affected. No one wants that. Please, educate yourselves on it, sign a petition, do whatever you can to let people, and congress, know that this bill should not be passed. Regardless of what you think, you WILL be affected by it.