The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) bill has been delayed until 2012. The House Judiciary Committee adjourned without voting on it.
The Committee was wrangling over the many amendments proposed to the legislation. U.S. Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren, an opponent of the bill, put forth several of them.
In a statement on SOPA, Lofgren cited security experts who say it could imperil cyber security, consumer groups that say it could raise prices for online goods, human rights advocates who say it could legitimize Internet censorship, educational institutions that say it could bring criminal liability for innocent conduct and investors who say it could stifle investment in legitimate Internet businesses.
Lofgren, however, is a minority among lawmakers even though netizens all over the U.S. oppose SOPA.
I am pleased that the unfounded claims of critics of the Stop Online Piracy Act have overwhelmingly been rejected by a majority of House Judiciary Committee members. Members consistently voted by a 2-1 margin to defeat amendments that would have made it more difficult to stop the problem of counterfeit products and online theft of America's intellectual property,” said Congressman Lamar Smith, SOPA’s sponsor, according to The Hill.
Lofgren, in a Reddit post, said: “If I had to bet right now…I would guess that SOPA proponents currently have the upper hand in Congress.”
She said one reason is that members of the Congress have not heard enough from their constituents who are upset about SOPA.
“Most Representatives are not as plugged into the net world as many of you are. To be heard, you must speak, directly and either by phone or in person,” she said.
She warned that tweets, emails and petitions are “nice” but “don’t get the same level of attention.”
She told the story of “a very intelligent colleague” who asked her about SOPA today because he “received an urgent and forthright telephone call from a small business person in his district who is tremendously opposed” to SOPA.
“If they represent you in the House, they most likely will be happy to take your call,” said Lofgren.
A spokesperson from her office told IBTimes that Lofgren decided to do a Reddit post because someone suggest via Twitter that she should.