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PIPA Blackout Seen Everybody make it through yesterday's Internet wide protest? Everyone still in one piece? Good.
Now, let's take a moment to consider the aftermath of Wikipedia's protest of SOPA/PIPA yesterday. While reports are coming in retired pandora beads that 4.5 million people signed Google's anti SOPA petition yesterday, Wikipedia has shared the information gathered from the 24 hour total blackout of their English language page. readers looked up their representatives via Wikipedia in order to protest SOPA and PIPA. The report goes on: "The Wikipedia blackout is over and the public has spoken," said Sue Gardner, Wikimedia Foundation Executive Director. "162 million of you saw our blackout page asking if you could imagine a world without free knowledge. You said no. You shut down the Congressional switchboards, and you melted their servers. Your voice was loud and strong." During yesterday's black out, people communicated their reactions on Twitter, which ranged from celebration and humor to unbelievably risible outrage (the latter of which was mostly students, so remember that when you think about how they'll be in charge of a lot of things some day). Wikipedia points out that, after the blackout started, several related worldwide trends materialized on Twitter such as factswithoutwikipedia, sopastrike, and "Imagine a World Without Free Knoweldge." Incredibly, in the initial hour of Wikipedia's blackout, "wikipediablackout constituted 1% of all tweet" and "more than 12,000 people posted pandora bracelets and charms on sale comments of support on the Wikimedia Foundation's blog post pandora build a bracelet announcing the blackout." For Wikipedia, this fight has never been about money, but about knowledge. In a little over a decade, Wikipedians have built the largest encyclopedia in human history. Wikipedia's mission is to empower and engage people to document the sum of all human knowledge, and to make it available to all humanity, in perpetuity. The Internet has enabled creativity, knowledge, and innovation to shine. As Wikipedia and other websites went dark, readers directed their energy to protecting the free and open Internet. We thank our readers for their support. Jimmy Wales, Wikipedia's founder and commander in chief, reflected on the "unprecedented, historic shuttering of the largest repository of free knowledge in the world":Jimmy WalesNow 35 Senators publicly opposing PIPA, up from 5 last week! 41 no votes and we win. I live in a country which respects the freedom of speech. I am at no risk of prison or physical violence or monetary fines for my views. If the worst that gets thrown at me is MPAA head Christopher Dodd saying that an Internet uprising is an "abuse of power" then I will survive just fine. Hossein Derakhshan is a young man I first met at Wikimania 2005 in Frankfurt. A Wikipedia editor and blogger, he is serving a 19 and a half year sentence in Iran for his writings on the Internet. I know of a Chinese Wikipedian who was visited by the police for setting up a mirror of Wikipedia multiple times during the era when China banned Wikipedia. There are many more like them, all around the world. These, and people like them, are my heroes. They are the people of true courage. I'm a very fortunate man in life, and I'm proud to stand up for freedom of speech and the right to access to knowledge in every circumstance that I can.
But my courage, if it is courage, is nothing compared to the courage of those who are really risking life and limb to speak truth to power. Let us take a moment today to honor them. So now that the scores are being tallied after the first round of Internet versus SOPA/Congress, how did yesterday's Wikipedia blackout affect discount pandora charms authentic you? Were you one the millions who contacted your Congressional Representative? Chime in below with your comments/thoughts.
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