- Patrick J. Leahy — Vermont
- Herb Kohl — Wisconsin
- Jeff Sessions — Alabama
- Dianne Feinstein — California
- Orrin G. Hatch — Utah
- Russ Feingold — Wisconsin
- Chuck Grassley — Iowa
- Arlen Specter — Pennsylvania
- Jon Kyl — Arizona
- Chuck Schumer — New York
- Lindsey Graham — South Carolina
- Dick Durbin — Illinois
- John Cornyn — Texas
- Benjamin L. Cardin — Maryland
- Tom Coburn — Oklahoma
- Sheldon Whitehouse — Rhode Island
- Amy Klobuchar — Minnesota
- Al Franken — Minnesota
- Chris Coons — Delaware
Free Speech and Internet Freedom are areas where party affiliations are meaningless. Some of the worst enablers of censorship are Democrats; some of the strongest advocates for liberty are Republicans. Conservative bloggers created DontCensorTheNet.com, which I just lent my support to; meanwhile everyone’s favorite liberal, Al Franken, voted in favor of drastic censorship this morning. Please pay attention to what the people you elected are doing!
The main mechanism of the bill is to interfere with the Internet’s domain name system (DNS), which translates names like “www.eff.org” or “www.nytimes.com” into the IP addresses that computers use to communicate. The bill creates a blacklist of censored domains; the Attorney General can ask a court to place any website on the blacklist if infringement is “central” to the purpose of the site.
If this bill passes, the list of targets could conceivably include hosting websites such as Dropbox, MediaFire and Rapidshare; MP3 blogs and mashup/remix music sites like SoundCloud, MashupTown and Hype Machine ; and sites that discuss and make the controversial political and intellectual case for piracy, like pirate-party.us, p2pnet, InfoAnarchy, Slyck and ZeroPaid . Indeed, had this bill been passed five or ten years ago, YouTube might not exist today. In other words, the collateral damage from this legislation would be enormous. (Why would all these sites be targets?)
COICA also stands for Censorship Of Internet Communications Act. The acronym is easy to remember because it sounds like CLOACA, with which it shares many similarities.