The call to action we sent to you all on September 23, 2010 has moved us forward to a Senate vote this Thursday, see below! If you have not yet written your legislators please do it now!!!
Bill Targeting Rogue Pirate Sites up for Vote Thursday
Make your voice heard today!
Dear Copyright Advocates,
As promised, we seek to keep you updated with news from Capitol Hill that affects your rights as an artist or creator. Read on to find out more about a new bill that is targeting rogue pirate sites. And take this opportunity to make your voice heard!
On Thursday, September 30th, the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to vote on legislation that will target web sites that profit from infringing music, movies, books, images, software, and other creative works. These websites don’t give a dime to artists. The legislation is called ”Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act” or S-3804. It is sponsored by 16 Democratic and Republican senators and its chief sponsor is Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT).
Our online world is now polluted with professional, legitimate-seeming sites that offer a wide array of artistic works for free and are supported by ads sold on the sites. Sometimes these sites even charge subscription fees for access to creative works. NOT A DIME OF THAT MONEY ever reaches the artists who create the work, such as an independent filmmaker we blogged about recently or another independent filmmaker profiled today in The Los Angeles Times. These sites profit from theft, pure and simple.
The legislation would encourage online ad brokers, online payment processors (such as credit card companies) and ISPs to cut off the income flow that feeds this piracy. As comic book author and illustrator Colleen Doran said in her Creators Across America video, “These sites wouldn’t be around if not for the dough.”
A growing number of artists are banding together to support this legislation. Colleen has used her blog to promote the legislation (here and here). In addition, a coalition of artists has put together an online petition you can use to let your elected representatives know how important it is to keep rogue web sites from profiting from your work. As the petition notes: “The theft of copyrighted works like photography, music, movies, books, software and games is a devastating problem… This rampant theft inhibits the ability of American businesses to invest and innovate — and stifles the capacity of American artists and creators to earn a living, support their families, and invest in their own creative development.”
You might also want to let Senator Leahy know you appreciate the hard work he and his colleagues are doing on behalf of artists.
We’ll keep all of you informed as this legislative effort continues.
Director of Outreach