Hey all, here's what I'm proposing: don't close your shop, but put this censorship bar over your banner for the day in protest of SOPA/PIPA:
Let's join the blackout tomorrow in our own Etsy way! (See below for a link to a censorship bar you can temporarily add to your shop banner for tomorrow's protest!!)
"The language in SOPA will lead to a shutdown of sites like Etsy, Vimeo, and YouTube. How? Etsy is a storefront for almost a million small hand-made-goods creators. If even one of those almost-a-million vendors is accused of copyright infringement, under SOPA the entire Etsy marketplace would be shut down. Same for YouTube, Vimeo, Flickr, and any other user-generated-content-driven site. Seem like a howitzer aimed at a house-fly to you? Yep, it does to us, too.
Here’s what Consumer Electronics Association CEO Gary Shapiro had to say after he wasn’t allowed to testify before the House committee working on SOPA:
“The bill attempts a radical restructuring of the laws governing the Internet. It would undo the legal safe harbors that have allowed a world-leading Internet industry to flourish over the last decade. It would expose legitimate American businesses and innovators to broad and open-ended liability. The result will be more lawsuits, decreased venture capital investment, and fewer new jobs.”
Sounds like a job-killing howitzer to us."
- taken from TECHEAD, www.techead.com/stop-sopa/
"Etsy is an online marketplace for handmade goods, where users can set up a storefront and create listings for things they’ve made. There are over 800,000 active “shops” filled with these handmade goods — far too many for Etsy to monitor manually. Further, because of the eclectic nature of goods listed, it’s difficult to technically filter through the objects listed.
All that means that it’s not feasible for Etsy to proactively prevent listings that may be perceived to violate US copyright or trademark law. That’s a problem, because under SOPA, anybody who is a “holder of an intellectual property right harmed by the activities” of even a portion of the site, could serve Etsy’s payment processors with a notice that would require them to suspend Etsy’s service within 5 days. That means that a trademark violation in one of the storefronts could lead to payment suspension across the entire site. Unlike DMCA notices, which should be targeted to specific infringements, payment provider suspensions will likely target entire accounts. And even if Etsy protests, the bill’s vigilante provisions, which grant them immunity for choking off a site if they have a “reasonable” belief that a portion of a site enable infringement, give the payment processors a strong incentive to cut them off anyway."
- taken from Rock The Capital, www.rockthecapital.com/11/23/blacklist-sites-sopa-put-risk/
I think it's really important that our community as well as our loyal and wonderful customers know about how SOPA/PIPA threatens Etsy.
So Here's what I'm doing about it:
I am voluntarily censoring my shop banner with a black bar with the words "HELP SAVE ETSY! STOP SOPA!" written on it, followed by a link (americancensorship.org) to the website people can go to in order to sign a petition against SOPA/PIPA.
If you want the file that you can just slap onto your existing banner, go here: www.mediafire.com/?hy9mqb3b1egrks5
just put this image as a new layer over your existing banner file, and upload as your banner.
Obviously this isn't forever, just until the craziness ends or whenever you feel like un-censoring your banner. I would definitely suggest we do this for tomorrow January 18th, in solidarity with the national internet blackout. But it will give the community and our customers a taste of the dystopian future that will be reality if we don't stop SOPA.