As we announced yesterday, Wikipedia will join several other websites tomorrow (including Blippitt) in “blacking out” or “going dark” in protest of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the PROTECT IP Act (PIPA).
Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales posted to Twitter yesterday to announce that the English version of Wikipedia will go dark on Wednesday for 24 hours – from midnight EST on January 18 until midnight EST January 19.
He later tweeted that:
“Final details [are] under consideration but consensus seems to be for ‘full’ rather than ‘soft’ blackout!”
It’s important to note that SOPA was indefinitely shelved yesterday, but it’s far from dead. Congress may try to revise it and push it through again so this blackout is of paramount importance. Reddit will also be blacking out tomorrow. For the full list of sites that will be going dark, visit www.SOPAStrike.com.
Here’s the full announcement from Wikipedia:
English Wikipedia to go dark January 18 in opposition to SOPA/PIPA
San Francisco — January 16, 2012 — On January 18, 2012, in an unprecedented decision, the Wikipedia community has chosen to blackout the English version of Wikipedia for 24 hours, in protest against proposed legislation in the United States — the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) in the U.S. House of Representatives, and PROTECT IP (PIPA) in the U.S. Senate. If passed, this legislation will harm the free and open Internet and bring about new tools for censorship of international websites inside the United States.
Wikipedia administrators confirmed this decision Monday afternoon (PST) in a public statement (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:SOPA_initiative/Action#Summary_and_conclusion):
Over the course of the past 72 hours, over 1800 Wikipedians have joined together to discuss proposed actions that the community might wish to take against SOPA and PIPA. This is by far the largest level of participation in a community discussion ever seen on Wikipedia, which illustrates the level of concern that Wikipedians feel about this proposed legislation. The overwhelming majority of participants support community action to encourage greater public action in response to these two bills. Of the proposals considered by Wikipedians, those that would result in a “blackout” of the English Wikipedia, in concert with similar blackouts on other websites opposed to SOPA and PIPA, received the strongest support.
“Today Wikipedians from around the world have spoken about their opposition to this destructive legislation,” said Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia. “This is an extraordinary action for our community to take – and while we regret having to prevent the world from having access to Wikipedia for even a second, we simply cannot ignore the fact that SOPA and PIPA endanger free speech both in the United States and abroad, and set a frightening precedent of Internet censorship for the world.”
We urge Wikipedia readers to make your voices heard. If you live in the United States, find your elected representative in Washington (https://www.eff.org/sopacall). If you live outside the United States, contact your State Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs or similar branch of government. Tell them you oppose SOPA and PIPA, and want the internet to remain open and free.
- Blippitt Will Black Out on January 18 to Protest SOPA and PIPA (blippitt.com)
- Wikipedia to black out all 3.8 million English-language pages to protest PIPA (digitaltrends.com)
- Wikipedia to Shutdown Site in Protest Against SOPA and PIPA (gadget.com)
- Wikipedia to join with Reddit in anti-SOPA blackout (vator.tv)
- Formal announcement of Wikipedia’s SOPA/PIPA blackout (wikimediafoundation.org)