The Great Web Blackout

The Great Web Blackout

We all survived the blackout, but how effective was it? The question may take some time to answer, but support for SOPA/PIPA appears to have weakened in its wake.

The biggest light shed this week may have been that on the rift between Hollywood and Silicon Valley. And why not? I mean, we have content creators and content access providers – and they both have their interests. But when Bills are drafted that seemingly only protect the rights of one, surely the other will see a few ruffled feathers.

We ‘Creatives’ are lucky. We get compensated for our ideas and the intellectual property that we create. In our industry, much of what we create isn’t tangible. But the creation and ownership of that product is just as real as the cake your local baker prepared. Art is art, content is content – though the form may take many shapes, it’s all creation – and the rights of those who create content should be protected. So, how can we have our cake and eat it too?

The answer lies in the way these Bills are written. We all agree that we must protect IP – this has been a challenge in our industry for a long time. America is a place of tremendous freedoms – and with the freedom to create also comes the right to protect. But, we also need to protect the rights of those who provide the access. After all, without an audience, who would consume the content?

By and large, the tech giants support the bills in theory – but take issue with it as drafted, stating that they expose law-abiding web and tech companies to uncertain liabilities, calling for monitoring of web sites. Thus, infringes on the rights of the content providers.

Rights should be protected, but censorship is not the answer. In order to draft a proper Bill that manages to protect the rights of content creators, but isn’t a gateway to censoring the web, one needs understand the architecture behind the internet. Backers of SOPA/PIPA do not appear to fully appreciate the unintended implications critics are citing. So, in addition to the great web blackout, the tech giants have thrown support behind the Online Protection and Enforcement of Digital Trade (OPEN) Act in an open letter to Chairman Issa and Senator Wyden.

Could the OPEN Act be the solution we are all looking for?

We need both the creators and providers – and we need to protect the rights of each. So, we need to find a middle ground. The day the web went dark is only the beginning.

How did the blackout affect your January 18?


Published by

Aimee Rose

Aimee brings a broad range of skills in content creation, development and delivery to the 360 Digital Influence Group at Ogilvy Washington. She holds nearly fifteen years of professional experience managing productions, new business initiatives and focusing on the creative development process from a variety of media and consumer outlets. Currently, as the Head of Content Activation, Aimee is charged with leading the effort to create, promote and distribute original content for client engagements. Her specialty is in video production, and big picture strategic planning and program development. Most recently with Ogilvy Washington, Aimee was the Executive Producer for the digital broadcast group, Moving Media. In this role, she not only directed and produced effective advertising and marketing campaign materials, but also led and managed the department and business development. In this capacity, her client work boasts the IRS FreeFile campaign, CDC’s Safe Teen Driving initiative and the Association of American Railroads Freight Rail Works campaign. She also earned an Addy award for her work on The Children’s Defense Fund’s 30th Anniversary Gala video. Prior to joining Ogilvy, Aimee worked as an account director for Pacific Trade International (Chesapeake Bay Candles). There, she was involved in all aspects of business management for the company’s largest account, Target Corp. Her experience included constructing a manufacturing production workflow for full life-cycle of new product development, along with creating and implementing project timelines for more than a dozen simultaneous programs with multiple deadlines. She was responsible for the strategic short and long-term business planning, along with daily operations and process implementation. Aimee spent the first eight years of her career at Discovery Communications, Inc. where she enjoyed opportunities in both launching new business initiatives, as well as day-to-day project operations. After working on the launch of the Animal Planet network in the US, Aimee simultaneously programmed the Discovery Channel for the Middle East and Turkey, as well as launched program schedules for Animal Planet Asia, India, Australia, New Zealand and Japan – bringing the channel to a full global network infrastructure. Leading from these experiences, she also launched Discovery’s first ever VOD and Interactive TV offerings, and wrapping her tenure there with the launch and network programming responsibilities for Discovery HD Theater. Aimee graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Broadcast Journalism from the University of Rhode Island.