GoDaddy Admits Domain Transfers On Rise

Image Credit: Flickr

So, what happened here? Well, due to GoDaddy's support of the SOPA legislation, they seen a significant loss of domain names, where users were transferring them over to another registrar. They freely admitted this. Why would GoDaddy's support of a legislation cause so many users to take such drastic action.

The reason is because the SOPA legislation was a very controversial bill. It really should have been broken down into many smaller bills, and tackled one at a time. So ultimately, SOPA should not have been introduced at all. It was way too ambitious. And close to impossible to achieve without being on the receiving end of a rebellion of literally millions of people. 

When people unite in those types of numbers, it's quite some rebellion. If noticed (many bills fly under the radar, never coming to the attention of the general public) Bills don't stand a chance if they push people too far. The power really does lie in the people and their (our) sheer numbers.

SOPA in a nutshell

SOPA stands for Stop Online Piracy Act. It was introduced to try and stem, or eliminate the huge problem of copyright infringement, and also to clamp down on the selling / distributing of fake goods (including drugs / medications). This bill was set to cover everything from banning certain payment processors from dealing with offending websites, manipulating DNS', to de-indexing (removing links) from the major search engines, and even going after people who stream copyrighted content. 

SOPA wanted to extend it's reach over almost everything on the Internet. After all, almost half the Internet can be considered as copyrighted content in some way or another. There was huge concern over the Bill when it came to freedom of information and freedom of speech. People were outraged over how far reaching SOPA was intending to be.

Copyright Infringement | Where Does It Start, or End?

Shared a picture on Pinterest you got from a website but you weren't the picture taker and its not royalty free, or licensed under the Creative Commons / public domain? Or worse, you inserted that picture on to your own website or blog. Uploaded your favourite movie clip to YouTube? Listed something for sale on eBay and used someone else's image or text in your listing?  If you done any of those things, you may have just committed a copyright infringement. See how ridiculous it is?

And can you imagine how hard it would be to enforce. SOPA bit off much more than they could chew. As a result, SOPA has been "Shelved".  Although they are adamant that its not dead and buried and still very much alive. Of course, there should be laws in place that deal with copyright infringements, which there is. 

But overall, what SOPA wanted was blatant censorship. And the power to completely remove a whole domain / website for a copyright violation (amongst other reasons) that one of their website users / members may have committed. How unfair is that. It's completely ridiculous.

Anyway, this was the reason why so many domain transfers took place. Website owners were concerned because GoDaddy was in support of SOPA to begin with. But when they (GoDaddy) seen the transfer numbers start rising they quickly changed their minds. They then somewhat reversed their support, claiming they were against SOPA. 

GoDaddy weren't the only company to receive some backlash from their customers for supporting this bill. Other companies who were in favor of SOPA were also boycotted. There was a "service blackout" in which many companies, including Google and Wikipedia joined together in protest of the bill.

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