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A SOPA/PIPA Blackout Explainer

• David Kravets via WIRED.com

Hundreds, if not thousands, of websites are expected to go dark or alter themselves Wednesday to protest proposed U.S. anti-piracy legislation that many believe goes too far fighting online copyright and trademark infringement.

Josh Levy, campaign manager for Free Press, said in a Tuesday conference call supporting the protest that “This is the biggest revolt we’ve seen online” against U.S. legislation.

The websites are expected to participate in the protest against the Senate’s Protect IP Act and the House’s Stop Online Piracy Act. They include brand names like Wikipedia, Wired, BoingBoing and the Electronic Frontier Foundation to little-known sites likes political action committee DemocracyForAmerica.

But what’s all the fuss about? Here’s an explainer of the basics of the bills, the protests and how you make your voice heard.

What prompted the protest?

*The expected protest comes despite the White House announcing Saturday it would not support the bills if they mandate changes to internet infrastructure, which was the most egregious provision in the measures that prompted the protests.

 

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