Rupert Murdoch tweeted to support SOPA & PIPA and call Google a “piracy leader”. Perhaps under the illusion that the bills, if passed, might stop search engines show links to webpages informing about phone hacking as well.
Perhaps they might. Apparently they are as vague as to allow censorship of all sorts. None the less, several websites staged a 24-hour blackout protest against them. Unsurprisingly, in general their dedication to profit was inversely proportional to how far-reaching their blackout was.
Politicians took notice and some of them withdraw their support for the bills. Not to be more popular among the electorate, you see, they were convinced by the legislative arguments of the opponents, which they hadn’t heard before.
Funnily enough, just after that one of the Internet’s largest file-sharing sites was shut down and its founders arrested in New Zealand, proving that even without the proposed new laws the US Justice Department is pretty powerful indeed even beyond the US borders.
In other news, Donald Trump claimed he wouldn’t build his golf resort in Aberdeenshire if the plans for a near wind farm were approved. Now this is a twist in the story. With the opposition there had been to the golf course to begin with, does he really think he made a threat?
Elsewhere, a woman was fined for expressing her opinions on the Net in a politically incorrect language. If this sort of thing continues, there’s the end of social networking: everybody will be too scared of “defaming” somebody to actually post anything. Another example of this development is the case of Tom Harris, who was ditched by his colleagues for defaming their opponens before the latter even protested.
Meanwhile, a research into work-related benefits revealed that actually British-born are much more likely to receive these than immigrants: which on the one hand means that fears of “benefit tourism” are unnecessary; on the other hand it can mean that we are robbing natives of jobs they could otherwise get.
Maybe that’s why so many young people are unemployed. The situation seems to be so desperate that some argue for ways of making people unemployable since the age of 55. Much better than hinting to the young that if they were willing to condescend to learn a second language, they might be as employable on the Continent as people from the Continent are in the Isles.
There are good news too though: the bill to re-introduce the double summer time was blocked, for the time being at least. Tom Harris stars here again, virtually claiming that if political Anglo-Scottish controversies are overcome, geographical differences will disappear as well.
And finally… of course, that referendum. It seems that after last week’s sabre-rattling,
haggling oops, I meant serious negotiating has begun.