SOPA: Congressman Ben Quayle No Longer a Fan After Internet Goes on Strike

Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Phoenix and help keep the future of New Times free.

As you may know, the Internet is "on strike" today. Well, not the entire Internet -- just Wikipedia. Several other big-name, high-traffic websites -- including Google and Craigslist -- have "blacked out" their websites today in protest of a bill currently making its way through Congress that they say would lead to censorship of online content, and could force many of the companies to shut down.

One sponsor of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) is Congressman Ben Quayle...er, was Congressman Ben Quayle.    

Quayle is one of several sponsors who bailed on his support of the bill yesterday -- as protests of the legislation spread across the series of tubes that are deceased Senator Ted Stevens' Interwebs.

Quayle spokesman Zach Howell tells New Times the congressman still supports the goal of the bill -- to crack down on foreign websites trafficking things like pirated movies, music, etc. -- but, as it's currently written, could create unintended problems.

"Congressman Quayle strongly believes that something must be done to combat rogue websites that steal American intellectual property," Howell says in an email. "This is a serious matter that costs businesses billions of dollars and destroys American jobs. However, Representative Quayle believes that as the bill currently stands, it could have unintended consequences that need to be addressed before moving forward and these concerns led him to withdraw his name as a co-sponsor."

Additionally, Nebraska Congressman Lee Terry, who also sponsored the bill, yanked his support yesterday, too.

A similar bill that's currently in the Senate lost the support of Florida Senator Marco Rubio, who noted on his Facebook page that he's "heard legitimate concerns about the impact the bill could have on access to the Internet and about a potentially unreasonable expansion of the federal government's power to impact the Internet."

For more info on the bill, just Wikipedia it (it's probably not a coincidence, but Wikipedia's SOPA page has not been blacked out. Check it out here).

Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.