We're not 'blacking out' today (but we still don't like SOPA)

Joystiq stands in solidarity with all the sites who are "blacking out" today in protest of the SOPA and PIPA bills ... or at least as much as we can stand in solidarity while continuing to post news. Let me explain.

We at Joystiq oppose the Stop Online Piracy Act -- as does our parent company AOL, who is part of a coalition who spoke out against the bill in a full-page NYT ad. In its present form, it gives control of the whole Internet to the same entertainment companies who frequently send erroneous DMCA complaints and takedown notices. It's dangerous and overreaching. Piracy is a problem, of course, but so is censorship -- and that's precisely what SOPA is. We aren't even sure it would have an effect on piracy (in fact, we know pirates are resourceful enough to get around it, meaning that censorship would be the only effect).

As journalists, we feel that the best thing we can do is to continue reporting, rather than to go silent. We'll continue informing you ... and not just about political issues that are important enough for us to be talking about them on a video game blog. About video games, too. It's what we do, as long as we still can. Our silence now could be as harmful as the forced silence we'd endure later under these laws.

If you're as concerned about this as we are -- if you use the Internet -- we urge you to contact Congress. If you're outside of the US, this affects you too, as the bill is targeted in part at "foreign sites." You can get in contact with the US State Department. You'll find forms for both of those here.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.