Google, eBay, Facebook, Twitter, PayPal and other big-name sites are contemplating a complete, coordinated blackout in an attempt to call users to arms over SOPA, the Stop Online Privacy Act. “There have been some serious discussions about that” Markham Erickson, head of the NetCoalition group of anti-SOPA organizations told CNET, with the so-called ‘nuclear option’ also being considered by Wikipedia and others.
Such a move would echo that of microblogging platform tumblr, which prompted almost 90,000 calls to US Representatives last month after intentionally blacking out its service to users. Those visiting their tumblr page, or that of other users, were faced with a message warning of the potential impact of SOPA and offering to connect them with their Representative to discuss their concerns and opposition.
Some of the biggest names online penned an open letter to regulators midway through last month, decrying SOPA as poorly thought through. The Senate will debate the act again on January 24, giving the NetCoalition members plenty of opportunity to stage their blackout and prompt online shoppers, video junkies, bloggers and more to get in touch and be heard.