I’ve been ranting about the COICA, a bill that may be passed through the senate before the year is out. The bill would allow the government to blacklist sites without warning (Here’s an account of my personal struggles with it). Well, Homeland security just did what the bill was going to do anyways.
Over 70 “alleged” piracy sites have been seized by the Department of Homeland Security this morning, some without any torrents or trackers (meaning that they facilitate no files of any sort, and thus couldn’t possibly be trafficking illegal content). They were not forewarned, nor were they provided with any means of due process. The sites were simply removed, without warning. Some popular sites, like Torrent-Finder.com, are listed among the blacklisted sites.
Keep in mind, COICA is not even out of the Senate, let alone in effect.
Some of the sites were, in fact, somewhat annoying; several of them sold knock-off versions of popular brands (Burberry scarves, Polo ties, and NFL jerseys, to name a few), but this doesn’t mean that they had any less right to exist than other sites. I’m a bit repulsed by the fact that legislature wasn’t even needed to carry out these takedowns. I feel like these seizures are blatantly unconstitutional and need to be dealt with on a case-by-case basis.
For a list of the taken-down sites, check TorrentFreak’s article.