Kaspersky leaves Business Software Alliance over SOPA

By on December 6, 2011, 7:30 AM

Kaspersky has moved to distance itself from an industry trade group amid growing controversy over H.R. 3261, better known as the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA). Introduced in late October, the bill would essentially allow the US government to censor the Web in the name of copyright protection. Having previously aligned itself with anti-piracy stances, it's no surprise that the Business Software Alliance (BSA) has been mostly positive about the bill.

The BSA has at least acknowledged that it needs to be tweaked so due process, free speech and privacy aren't compromised -- an impossible feat, many SOPA opponents contest. Granting such authority to a centralized power, even with the purest of intentions, is a recipe for disaster -- especially in the bureaucratic nightmare that is Washington DC. We've already seen questionable examples of seizures and censorships without SOPA.

Because it's a member of the BSA, Kaspersky's name has been a part of the mudslinging, even though it hasn't been involved in debates about SOPA and doesn't support the initiative. "We believe that such measures will be used contrary to the modern advances in technology and the needs of consumers," the Russian security firm explained. To demonstrate its disapproval, Kaspersky will withdraw its BSA membership on January 1, 2012.

Other industry titans, including Google, Yahoo, Facebook, Twitter and others have expressed concerns over the proposed legislation. Most have taken a similar stance to the BSA in saying that they support SOPA's objective (curbing piracy), but not its approach. Similar to Kaspersky, Yahoo has ceased its membership of the US Chamber of Commerce, a lobbying group that supports SOPA. Google has threatened to quit too.




User Comments: 13

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chaboi390 said:

who the hell even thought this act up anyway... must be some old fat guy who has nothing better to do, than just to screw the common people

p51d007 said:

The government has been angling to censor the web, since the first blogger starting bad mouthing the government. As with other bills, they will probably pass it, because, "we have to pass it, to know what's in it". These overpaid, underworked bellhops will do ANYTHING to protect their cozy little private club, and censoring diverging viewpoints, with this bill, will be the crack they need, to shut down the part of the web they think will upset their apple cart.

Freedom of speech means just that. I do not care for a lot of the garbage on the web, but, when you start shutting down debate, ANY debate, you start down a path that you can never return from.

amstech amstech, TechSpot Enthusiast, said:

The funny part is, these companies don't care for thier consumers. At all. They could care less if Uncle Sam is using them and their products/software to get information.

They care about global capital.

The problem is, the people/consumers aren't going to do business with them if they participate in ANY type of information censorship. Companies like Google produce appeal and gain large market share due to open results and very little to no restriction. You start taking that away Google will be a thing of the past in 18 months.

TekGun TekGun said:

And Kaspersky just earned my renewal.

Serag said:

..while they still support PROTECT IP act, which is basically the same. I'm starting to feel that the SOPA bill is on table to distract people from PROTECT IP or make it look reasonable in comparison.

Guest said:

Long live Kaspersky!

Just another reason to love them. This shows they've got the guts.

Thanks Kas!

Guest said:

"who the hell even thought this act up anyway... must be some old fat guy who has nothing better to do, than just to screw the common people"

Well ****ing said. I can't even begin to think how wretched someone's mind must be to think this **** up, really!

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I'll give Kaspersky a High Five for that.

Guest said:

same old same old.

couple of fat no good pirates ruin the PC as a gaming platform.

couple of fat no good pirates destroy Internet "freedom"

*sigh*

TJGeezer said:

chaboi390 said:

who the hell even thought this act up anyway... must be some old fat guy who has nothing better to do, than just to screw the common people

It's rude to describe the U.S. Congress that way, even if it's true.

Darkshadoe Darkshadoe said:

Guest said:

same old same old.

couple of fat no good pirates ruin the PC as a gaming platform.

couple of fat no good pirates destroy Internet "freedom"

*sigh*

Yep.. Pirates do all that. I think they caused global warming, the Hindenburg crash, and the disappearance of Amelia Earhart too. In fact, I think they are behind 9/11, the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and the Milli Vanilli lip syncing scandal as well.

I guess the case is closed. I know I will sleep better tonight.

Guest said:

And that sir, is why I love to use Kaspersky products. They have their heads screwed on right.

Try and censor it mofos, Anonymous will get your asses :P

We are the people and we have a right to freedom of any information.

I understand the copyright protection idea, still not reason enough to give someone the power to control what information is allowed. It has been proven that Piracy does not destroy markets - it was released again recently:

"A new official report from the Swiss government concluded that the country's lenient anti-piracy laws are more than enough since piracy is not as harmful as the entertainment industry would have us believe.

The report conceded that more than one third of Swiss over 15 pirate music, movies and games regularly; however, it noted that most of them don't realize they are doing something illegal despite widespread media coverage on the subject.

More importantly, the report noted that no matter the size of piracy going on, the total amount spent on entertainment doesn't really change. In other words, money saved by piracy is spent on other forms of entertainment anyway.

In the end, content creators end up recouping their piracy losses through concerts, cinemas and merchandising as those give user an experience that cannot be downloaded.

So what about studios and record labels who make their livelihood off of content? Tough luck, the report says. They have to "adapt to the changing consumer behavior" or die."

Screw the people who wants to control us!!!

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