Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI) joined today's web protest against the House's Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Senate's PROTECT IP Act (PIPA). Amash "blacked out" his popular Facebook Page by blocking new comments on his Wall and replacing his profile picture with an anti-SOPA and PIPA graphic, which Amash designed.
"These bills give the federal government unprecedented power to censor Internet content and will stifle the free flow of information and ideas," Amash said. "Demand that Congress and the President keep the Internet open and free. Please contact your Representatives and Senators in Congress to urge them to protect your right to free speech by opposing SOPA and PIPA," Amash urged visitors to his Facebook Page.
SOPA, introduced as H.R. 3261, grants the federal government vast new powers to blacklist entire websites that are accused of containing even one instance of copyright-infringing material. The government also may order Internet service providers, payment processing companies, and search engines not to interact with the allegedly offending sites.
"For the last two decades, the Internet has been an engine of economic growth and an unsurpassed medium for free speech. People have used the Internet to change the way we do business and to bring down oppressive regimes," said Amash. "I will do everything in my power to stop the federal government from meddling with our right to free speech on the web."