Following the lead of internet icons such as Wikipedia and Mozilla and Firefox, and I shutting down all of my websites for the remainder of the day, as part of a global protest of the SOPA/PIPA laws currently before the US congress.

Let me be clear that I do not support piracy of copyrighted material. I myself have been a victim of piracy in the past, and we do need rules to restrict it. However the laws being discussed would give a single government the authority to shut down anything on the internet for any reason, with no legal recourse by the victims.

And although the U.S. is relatively tame, such a law could become an international precedent for countries such as China, Syria, or Iran which currently block access of their own citizens but which could use such laws to erase every site worldwide that they disagree with.

The internet community needs to unite to stop this unilateral censorship of the internet!

As the great philosopher Tommy Smothers said "The only valid censorship of ideas is the right of people not to listen."