Software Companies Turn Their Backs Against SOPA

November 23, 2011, By Sanjeev Ramachandran

A change of stance by some software giants. The Business Software Alliance is the latest addition to the growing list of organizations that are up against the Stop Online Piracy Act.

The group members include software biggies like Microsoft and Apple. They had initially supported the proposed legislation, but then they changed sides due to concerns over certain elements they think would be troublesome for legitimate companies rather than copyright violators.

BSA CEO, Robert Holleyman, posted in a blog that they are still in favor of the bill’s goal, which is to deter software piracy by making it difficult to profit from stolen material. But he acknowledges that many companies are concerned over the implementation of the proposals.

“It is intended to get at the worst of the worst offenders,” Holleyman said. “As it now stands, however, it could sweep in more than just truly egregious actors.”

The Motion Pictures Association of America had pointed at China as an example of a model for Internet censorship. This was said during a recently held Congressional hearing and the example did raise some skeptical eyebrows of those present.

Moreover, the movie studio group did not provide any clear details about the technical challenges faced and those they have to overcome before the blacklisted sites are blocked. The SOPA bill currently has the backing from both sides but it still remains unclear if the bill will be enacted.

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