updated 05:05 pm EST, Thu November 17, 2011
European Parliament joins fight against SOPA
The European Parliament has become the latest to oppose the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), according to TorrentFreak. The Parliament adopted a resolution that effectively criticizes domain name seizures of "infringing" file sharing websites because they endanger "the integrity of the global Internet and freedom of communication." US authorities have began seizing domain names for websites that are found to encourage copyright infringement.
The SOPA legislation that aims to give copyright holders more ways to protect their products from foreign sites has faced fierce criticism from the public, legal experts and civil liberties groups. The bill becoming law would allow the US to shut down domains worldwide if they are managed by US companies. These would include popular .com, .org and .net domains and could potentially affect large sites in European Union member states.
This summer, the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) shut down Rojadirecta, despite it being owned by Spanish company Puerto 80 and being declared legal in Spain by two courts. A US warrant was the only measure required for the shutdown. Puerto 80 is now in a legal battle in the US to get its domain back.