SOPA Hearing Letter_cea_ ccia_ nc by mmasnick


									November 15, 2011

The Honorable Lamar Smith
Committee on the Judiciary
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515

Re:    H.R. 3261, the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA)

Dear Mr. Chairman,

We are writing on behalf of the Consumer Electronics Association, the Computer and
Communications Industry Association and NetCoalition to express our dissatisfaction with the
severely limited opportunity afforded for those with concerns about the Stop Online Piracy Act
(SOPA) to make their views known at Wed

In addition to technology industry representatives like CEA, CCIA and NetCoalition, significant
and substantive concerns have been raised by Venture Capitalists, human rights organizations,
artists, musicians and members of many other communities about SOPA. They should be
allowed to have their voices heard as well.

Our organizations agree that the aim of SOPA to combat offshore, online counterfeiting and
copyright infringement is a good one. In fact, all of N
have devoted extensive time, effort and money to ensure American copyrights are not infringed

However, SOPA goes well beyond providing tools to rights holders to give them remedies to
combat sites that are outside the jurisdiction of U.S. courts. Instead, SOPA creates new
substantive domestic law that as a practical matter eliminates the safe harbors provided by the
Digital Millennium Copyright Act. Thus, SOPA severely threatens lawful, U.S. technology
industries by overturning the existing laws that have helped fuel the tech boom of the last decade
and instituting new regulations which would stifle innovation and job creation.

The technology sector is one of the few industries growing, flourishing and hiring in the current
economic environment. Because the technology industry stands to be the most affected by
SOPA, it would make sense that the Committee would want to hear as many ideas, thoughts and
opinions as possible from its members. We have some very serious concerns about the negative
       The possible harm SOPA will cause to social media by imposing liability on a site if only
       one user submits illegal content and potentially forcing tech companies to pre-screen and
       monitor all user comments, pictures and videos.

       Without any real process safeguards, there is great potential for abuse by rightsholders.
       This increased risk could dramatically reduce the amount of investment in the technology
       sector the lifeline for young businesses and start-ups.

                                                                   or anonymous troll.

       Because these bills give any rights holder the ability to request a site be shut down with

       history of giving due process to those whose property could be harmed.

We urge the Committee to reconsider or conduct subsequent hearings to allow our organizations


Markham Erickson
Executive Director

Gary Shapiro
President and CEO
Consumer Electronics Association

Edward Black
President and CEO
Computer & Communications Industry Association

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