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11/19/10

Congress Gives Attorney General Power To Blacklist Websites

The US Senate Judiciary Committee unanimously approved the Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act meant to crack down websites that infringe on copyrights owned by powerful media companies. As if that isn't happening enough. But it allows courts and the AG to create blacklists. Huffington Post:

COICA creates two blacklists of Internet domain names. Courts could add sites to the first list; the Attorney General would have control over the second. Internet service providers and others (everyone from Comcast to PayPal to Google AdSense) would be required to block any domains on the first list. They would also receive immunity (and presumably the good favor of the government) if they block domains on the second list.

The lists are for sites "dedicated to infringing activity," but that's defined very broadly -- any domain name where counterfeit goods or copyrighted material are "central to the activity of the Internet site" could be blocked.

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