It’s 2012, and the uncorruptible and brilliant technical minds in Congress are back from vacation and once again working to pass two bills that would rewrite (and most likely ruin) how our internet works in the name of protecting copyright holders. So here’s another way to tell the world how you feel about the underhandedly titled Stop Online Piracy Act in the House and the PROTECT IP Act in the Senate.
Go to a new site called BlackoutSOPA.org, and create a modified profile photo for yourself, that you can easily install on Twitter or download to put on Facebook, Tumblr or any other site you want. Created by Hunter Walk and Gregor Hochmuth, the site offers three profile images to choose from: a simple pitch-black one, which is both easy to create on your own, and a little too subtle for the issue in my opinion; a slightly less conceptual one that just says “Stop SOPA” in place of your photo; or one that lets you easily layer the text “Stop SOPA” beneath your existing profile image.
Most of us who have used it so far are choosing this last option. Since all the major SOPA-supporting news networks are busy censoring coverage of the issue in the anti-democratic style you’d expect from them, you should go do this now yourself if you want to get the word out to your online friends.
You can also submit other badge designs to the site by emailing your creations to: submissions (at) BlackoutSOPA (dot) org.
Also, I’m by no means supporting piracy — in fact, I don’t like people ripping off my articles, either — so go read this nuanced post by Greylock partner John Lilly for a fair-minded critique of both sides.
And be sure to check out all of our past coverage of the issues here on TechCrunch for more background.