Part of SOPA Could be Back
The part that could send Justin Bieber to jail
By Ruth Brown, Newser Staff
Posted Aug 5, 2013 3:05 PM CDT
Justin Bieber.   (AP Photo/Marco Ugarte)

(Newser) – Thought SOPA was dead and buried? Its corpse could be reanimated—or at least a body part, anyway. The Washington Post has picked up on a recent government report, which recommends that one part of SOPA be brought back to the table: making it a felony to stream copyrighted works. It's already a felony to reproduce or distribute copyrighted material, but streaming it online is just a misdemeanor. But the recommendation from the Department of Commerce's Internet Policy Task Force is that they should all be equal, as "streaming (both audio and video) has become a significant if not dominant means for consumers to enjoy content online."

The last time this debate played out, much of it centered around the notion that it could potentially send some bedroom vlogger to jail for posting a video of a "Somebody That I Used to Know" cover on YouTube. Even Justin Bieber, who started out singing covers online, spoke out against the provision (and also inspired a campaign called "Free Bieber"). "I check YouTube all the time and watch people singing my songs," the baggy-panted one said at the time, per Ars Technica. "I think it's awesome."

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Aug 7, 2013 12:24 AM CDT
It could all be made moot if the SCOTUS approves of Aereo. So far, the lower courts have held that they are using legitimate streaming provisions of fair use laws. Their implementation was ingenious and they plan to roll out systems in more cities other than NYC. Basically the way it works is that they now stream all NYC TV stations. Its around 38 total. Most of the stations they stream are sub channels of digital tv. The court has ruled that since they install a single antenna for every new subscriber, they are simply passing along over the air content to a person who paid to have that one antenna hooked up to their farm. They have something like 30,000 tiny antennas hook up to the top of a building. Local stations in NYC joined in the suit stating that they are due re-trans fees they get from cable and dish services.
Aug 6, 2013 9:58 AM CDT
Music "artists" definitely need more of our money. Booze, drugs, mansions and fancy pimped out cars aren't getting any cheaper.
Aug 6, 2013 7:47 AM CDT
How would he be sent to jail? Headlines here worse than tmz