noted in passing

instead of a blackout, why not a blacklist?

[repurposing this from G+]

I just installed a #SOPA blackout plugin for WordPress on the blog that no one but Google reads and it occurred to me, rather than content providers turning their sites black, why not start blocking gov’t netblocks? Congressional offices don’t need the internet, do they? They can use the telephone or a FAX machine, maybe go to the library. Though if I was a librarian and a SOPA sponsor or his staff tried to use the public terminals, I might be inclined to turn them away: you have to know how it works before you can use this, and those people plainly don’t get it.

We know that torrent downloads have been traced to governments everywhere, even our own. Seems to me the best option is a variant of how we deal with email spam: a realtime blacklist. Any organization that attacks free speech should be banned from accessing any website that objects to those attacks. I can see a special 503 error page that makes plain why they can’t be served at this time.

Imagine if email relays refused to send mail from .gov addresses (just the legislative branch), just sent them all back with an error explaining why their mail is undeliverable. Web page loads would fail, display a simple black and white message that “This content cannot be served to you at this time. Users in your domain have engaged in copyright infringement which means your domain is banned. Have a nice day.”

Maybe it’s unworkable, maybe not enough sites would do it, certainly no large ones. But I am tired of this being labelled a technology problem when it’s really a business problem. Someone abuses a technology, be it the internet or a hammer, it’s not the person who made the tool who is at fault but the person using it and in this case, the organization claiming injury.