SOPA/PIPA and the OSR

(cross-posted to a bunch of forums)

Hey folks. I try not to mix my politics with my gaming, but this is something I think we all need to be thinking about. The proposed SOPA & PIPA legislation seems like bad stuff, and I’ve especially been thinking about how it could impact OSR games, blogs, and so on. If you’re not familiar with this stuff, there’s a good primer on the topics here: http://www.copyblogger.com/sopa/

As I interpret this stuff, it could very well kill just about everything that’s been great, is great, and could still be great about the OSR. If this junk had been in place when OSRIC, LL, S&W and the other retroclones had been just getting started, it’s entirely possible that all of these things would have been nipped in the bud. And that would have been a tragedy.

So please take a few moments to educate yourself on these proposed laws and, if you’re so inclined, contact your elected representatives to let them know how you feel. A lot of great work has already been done by folks around the internet to put an end to this madness. But there’s more to be done.

Also, if you run a blog or other site, please consider joining in with Reddit’s blackout planned for 1/18/12. Full details here: http://blog.reddit.com/2012/01/stopped-they-must-be-on-this-all.html

I’ll definitely be taking StrangeStones.com dark that day, but I don’t think that making a statement to all four of my readers is enough. If a huge swath of the OSR and other geek blogs took part, though, it might actually add up to something.

Oh, and for the record, I am 100% against piracy and IP theft and all of that. I’ve had my own pirates and thieves to deal with in various parts of my disparate artistic & other pursuits. I just happen to think that these particular approaches to the problems are draconian, stupid, ineffectual and downright dangerous.

That’s all I’ve got. Thanks for your time.

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5 thoughts on “SOPA/PIPA and the OSR

  1. bat

    To me, SOPA and PIPA are not about piracy, but about control. I actually don’t mind if these laws are passed because I believe that then those in real power with regard to the internet, the last vestiges of groups like the Cult of the Dead Cow and their disciples and fellows/rivals, will overthrow the powers that be by undoing anything that the government attempts. For those not in the know, the CotDC is an old group of hackers who know the ins and outs of the internet. Our government is like a big dangerous bull in a China shop, but that doesn’t mean that they will get their way.

    1. the venomous pao Post author

      I appreciate where you’re coming from, bat. But personally, I’d rather fight before the damage is done rather than hope that the old hackers can truly undo the damage after it’s done. I don’t underestimate the CotDC and the other groups, of course. I just don’t want to find myself hoping they do indeed come through when we’re desperate.

      1. bat

        Quite true too, chum. It just seems that with our government anymore they can mention the Patriot Act in there somewhere and it gets approved. We don’t want the terrorists downloading illegal copies of Three’s Company for their own weird purposes. Sounds corny, but it seems to be the sort of logic that runs this land.

        1. the venomous pao Post author

          Crazy terrorists. Life just hasn’t been same down at the Regal Beagle since they moved into the neighborhood!

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