Thomas Jefferson School of Law will present a panel discussion Wednesday, February 8, on the controversial SOPA and PIPA bills in Congress that would combat Internet piracy. "SOPA & PIPA – Copyright Protection or Internet Censorship?" is sure to be a lively topic.
SOPA is the Stop Online Piracy Act and PIPA is the Protect Intellectual Property Act. The two bills became household words on January 18 when Wikipedia went dark and Google placed a black banner across its logo in protest of the proposed laws.
The event is sponsored by TJSL’s Entertainment Law Society (ELS) and the Center for Law and Intellectual Property (CLIP). It starts at 4 p.m. in Room 323 of the law school, with check-in at 3:45 p.m.
The host is Professor Kevin K.J. Greene, who has been interviewed about the two bills in the media and appears on TJSL’s website discussing SOPA and PIPA.
“Usually IP legislation reflecting the whims of big-spender industry lobbyists in the film and music passes in the dead of night, unbeknownst to ‘we the people,’” said Professor Greene. “The public awareness to and harsh backlash against these proposed laws has been remarkable and arguably unprecedented.”
The panelists will be Kevin Keenan, the Executive Director of the ACLU for San Diego and Imperial Countie's and Rainey Reitman, who is the Activism Director of the Electronic Frontier Foundation.
"The Entertainment Law Society is mindful of the student voice,” said Lindsey-Shannon Lee, president of ELS. “TJSL students are aware of and concerned with the austere effects that copyright legislation like SOPA and PIPA can have on a free society.”
The controversy over the two proposed laws has grown dramatically since January 18, and it is seen by some as a “Battle of the Titans” between the entertainment industry and the Internet industry.
According to Professor Greene, “SOPA-PIPA brings the free speech ramifications of IP laws to front and center of the debate. Perhaps no better-qualified advocates of First Amendment rights could be found than our two presenters.”
"Individuals who attend the event can expect to leave well informed on a hot topic that could have a chilling effect on global internet users,” said Lee. @tjsl.edu
The event is free, and 1 unit of MCLE credit is available for attorneys.