January 10, 2012

Banners, Splashes, and KILLSOPA.ORG

In Thinking the Unthinkable About SOPA a couple of days ago, I touched on the concept of splash pages, banners, and other "in your face" mechanisms to help get the word out -- beyond our usual "preaching to the choir" -- about the evils of SOPA - The Stop Online Piracy Act.

My sense is that problems with SOPA and PIPA (Protect IP Act) are now very well known in the technical community. The question is, how to get people outside of this community to see what they stand to lose through such legislation. This means trying to go beyond our usual "social community" of correspondents and followers.

As I noted in that earlier posting, it's important that we provide specific information that includes action items people can consider to reach out to their Congressional officials and others as appropriate about this issue.

Over on Twitter yesterday, a campaign began for people to overlay "STOP SOPA" banners on their avatar images. This is a great idea as far as it goes, but unfortunately does not provide any information at all about where to find more information about why anyone should want to stop SOPA. Obviously they can conduct a search, but there's really no telling where they'll end up from day to day, and some anti-SOPA approaches are decidedly less likely to have an impact than others.

In light of all this, I've done two things. First, I've created the domain KILLSOPA.ORG as a proposed destination landing place for various banner, splash page, and other anti-SOPA campaigns.

I've also now overlaid this domain name on my standard avatars for Twitter, Google+, and other sites, which appear on postings, profile pages, and so on.

Right now, killsopa.org redirects to an EFF page discussing how to take action against SOPA, but this will change as time and resources permit.

Since we're going to be putting messages out in front of people, it seems logical that these messages should include a destination for more info, not just the protest statement. Using a domain name in this situation helps to solve this problem.

If you have any interest in helping with this effort, in particular with the killsopa.org website itself, please let me know. Of course your other thoughts and any questions are welcome as always.

Kill SOPA.


Posted by Lauren at January 10, 2012 12:33 PM | Permalink
Twitter: @laurenweinstein
Google+: Lauren Weinstein