Last week, Wikipedia blacked out their website for a day in order to raise awareness of SOPA and PIPA, two documents which seem to be badly written. To me, the badly written part seems to be half of most people's problems with either SOPA or PIPA. The other parts are the potential huge extra costs to websites, limiting nature of not allowing things with copyright infringement to be linked to, and an end to proxies.
According to the rather well written Wikipedia article, extra employees/programs would have to constantly be monitoring all linked sites (and their own) to make sure that none had any copyright infringement. Problems with this include 1: by now almost everybody does some copyright infringement and 2: it's the vagueness of SOPA that makes this a worry. No one knows how much copyright infringement may or may not be allowed, so this may mean limited access to sooooo much of the internet.
Most everybody has done some copyright infringement. It could be anything from writing fanfiction to photoshopping one's self into celebrity photos. The fear is, due to bad/vague writing, that SOPA could make it so that links to sites with these types of infringement would be illegal. The bigger fear is that websites could be charged and fined for not knowing about and getting rid of the offending links with no warning needed or explanation allowed.
The States doesn't like the proxy apparently. I would like someone to explain how the bad they can do is worse than the good. Proxies are how people who live in countries with currupt governments use the internet. They don't want their government spying on them while they e-mail friends and family, and they especially don't want their governments spying on them if they're freedom writers. On the less serious end, proxies are how I would watch CNN if I wanted to watch it. I as a Canadian am not allowed to watch it because they don't have to show the commercials in Canada (I would see them if I used a proxy).
So that's that. My thoughts based on my limited knowledge of SOPA. From what I read, there is no way that I would ever want it to happen, especially in Canada (which is now a possibility. Ugh.). It may be time to write to my local representative.