Congress should demonstrate to other nations that combatting online infringement, including by blocking illegal sites, will neither “break the Internet” nor harm free speech.
Policymakers should understand that no bill that targets foreign infringing sites would be acceptable to ideologically-driven advocates, including those who populate Internet standards bodies, regardless of their claims that they also want to reduce piracy. However, other critics have raised reasonable questions about aspects of the legislation, particularly of SOPA. While the countermeasures proposed in PIPA/SOPA that make it more difficult to distribute, locate, and earn revenue from foreign infringing websites should be adopted, policymakers should also listen to the legitimate concerns of stakeholders who make good-faith efforts to improve the legislation, rather than kill it. In particular, policymakers should ensure that the enforcement mechanisms in PIPA/SOPA are targeted, fair, and effective.