US Government seizure of the internet has begun; DHS takes over 76 websites
Nov 28, 2010
As part of a new expansion of government power over information, the Department of Homeland Security has begun seizing and shutting down internet websites (web domains) without due process or a proper trial. DHS simply seizes web domains that it wants to and posts an ominous “Department of Justice” logo on the web site. See an example at http://torrent-finder.com
Over 75 websites were seized and shut down last week, and there is no indication that the government will stop such efforts. Right now, their focus is websites that they claim “violate copyrights,” yet the torrent-finder.com website that was seized by DHS contained no copyrighted content whatsoever. It was merely a search engine website that linked to destinations where people could access copyrighted content. Google also links to copyrighted content — does that mean the feds will soon seize Google, too?
These seizures were conducted on the basis of language in the DMCA law, which is vastly overreaching in its powers (it was passed to appease the music recording industry and the RIAA). Even so, the U.S. Senate is right now considering passing yet another law — COICA — the Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act (http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2010/11/…), a new law that would give the federal government even more power to shut down websites it opposed.