Wednesday, January 18, 2012

How SOPA Affects Us

For my American readers, a controversial, and detrimental bill is set to be voted on in the US congress next week. Now, if you've been reading the news, SOPA, or Stop Online Piracy Act, is, like it's called, a bill to stop online piracy. Read about it here:

SOPA has the potential to threaten free speech, and the Internet.

Now, as fans of a genre of media from Japan, it's pretty hard to enjoy it without some people uploading it onto the Internet. We have no other way of watching it, other than buying DVDs. But not all of us speak Japanese, so we need subbers to do their magic and sub them for us. So even if we buy the DVDs, we probably won't understand them, and won't enjoy them.

So, let's say that possibly the juiciest episode of Gokaiger, or Gobusters comes out. And you need to watch it, because it looks epic. And not only that, but you probably need to have subs because there is a lot of dialogue and dramatic confrontations, so you need to understand Japanese to understand what they're saying, and why did Marvelous get so upset at what Joe just said. Well, you would usually download a sub from one of the more reliable sub sites. But, if SOPA is passed, you probably won't be able to access those sights. In fact, the bill could put the people behind the site in jeopardy. The bill poorly defines what they want to criminalize, that anyone could get penalized.

So the people who work so hard to upload, sub, time, and QC series could face penalties. And this goes for RAWs too.

And this doesn't just go for the current series. A bunch of the older series are really good. And the only way to get a hold of these series is, you guessed it, the internet.

And we, the viewers, could also get penalized as well.

So, if you have an urge to watch an episode of Battle Fever J, and you get hooked, so you download a half a season, and in a few months, there's a knock on your door, you're busted, and could be facing prison time. And all you wanted to do was to watch Battle Cossack (both ones) and Battle Kenya kick butts to disco music, because there was no other way to watch other than, you guessed it, downloading it.

So, for my American readers, sign this. Your zip-code is required, so you can't sign it if you don't live in the States:

And for my international readers, please support the actions of those protesting the bill, and protest the bill yourself. Because it affects not just us fans of an internationally obscure Japanese genre (come on, ask your neighbor if they're heard of Super Sentai) but pretty much everyone who enjoys using the internet.

Thank you!

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