This link to boingboing is a re-post of techdirt  who did the research after reading it on politico 
Rep. Smith's new bill is basically an agency shuffle of the already-established IP attache program, which is currently under the US Patent and Trademark office. Smith's bill would move this office to the Department of Commerce, and turn it into a full agency. That likely means beefing up efforts to expand the promotion of US IP laws around the world. But it is not even close to establishing DNS blocking, or any of the other truly problematic parts of SOPA.
All the pieces of SOPA/PIPA/whatever will turn up somewhere. They know they can't cram the whole thing through at once, so it's fairly likely that the bits will just turn up in other bills -- I can see last-minute amendments to big spending bills as a great way to get this stuff pushed through before there can be much outcry. Once they're passed, they'll be really hard to undo.
Basically, we already have a "SOPA" that was passed in 2008. It's called the Pro-IP ACT, and they use it to take down hundreds of .com, .org or .net sites. SOPA was just the foreign version of Pro-IP Act, meaning it targeted foreign domains as well.
Still, you don't see many people talking about the Pro IP Act. Heck, we can't even undo the Patriot Act, and that one has been a lot more controversial, let alone "Internet bills" like these that don't interest that many people outside outside the online tech communities.
Okay so it's not the justice you get in a Hollywood movie, I admit. Thus I think the solution to both problems is to stop watching Hollywood movies. ^_^;;
I don't know if it's feasible, but I think it would be interesting to at least see what it would take.
It really bothered me to the primary results so skewed in Smith's favor. Most of the people who pulled the trigger for him probably either never heard of SOPA, or if they had, didn't know he was the bill's sponsor. (Not that his malfeasance is limited to SOPA, of course.)
I'm not sure what even a fully-engaged angry internet mob could do about that.
I wonder if that could work or if it would backfire.
Would be very nice as a way to send a clear message to other politicians stupid enough to pull these stunts.
"Reddit's" Political Action Committee, "Test Pac", was raising funds to put billboards all over his district. I'm not sure if that was aimed more at the primary, which Smith won, or at the general election. I think it's the latter.
Breadpig also raised funds for a billboard around the time of the primary, and I believe there actually was a billboard up in the district as a result of this. It may still be up.
FWIW it was only the primary.
It would involve some serious value judgments and compromises (a liberal dem is not going to get elected there), and my bet would be that they simply are not capable of it in the end.
I'm a conservative, and there is no way that I want to see this bill or any lesser / related version of this bill be passed EVER.
I'm just an idea guy.
When I first started getting involved with [grass roots
politics], I didn't understand the concept of no leaders.
I thought I did; but I didn't. And I'd go up to the
nearest alpha male or alpha female and say, "Here's what
you should do - Why don't you do this - It'd be great if
you all did this - And when are you going to do this?"
And they'd give you this look, that I never understood,
which was kind of ...
I think, "Weird". And I'd go up to the next alpha, "When
are you going to do this - It'd be great if you did this
- Why haven't you done this yet - Why don't you do this
- It'd be wonderful if you did this?" And again, they'd
give me this look, like ...
And after a year, the penny dropped, and I finally
realised what that look meant, because they won't tell
you, because that would be hierarchical, right? What this
look meant was, "Yes, good Idea, why don't you do it
yourself? You print the leaflets, I'll distribute them;
you call a meeting, I'll attend; you organise an action,
we'll come along".
And from that moment, I realised that, my whole
philosophical outlook changed. And from then on, instead
of suggesting things other people could do, I stopped
suggesting things all-together, in-case they expected me
to do them..." - Robert Newman
They have funded a billboard: http://fightforthefuture.org/billboard
and a TV commercial:
He still won his primary but you can join to help defeat him in the general election.
(Disclaimer: I helped do the TestPAC billboard and commercial as an officer in the PAC)
And I'm hell on wheels about personal freedoms and liberty. We live in a terrible security state. We need to stand up and take action.
But at times I start feeling like I'm having my chain yanked -- that in my obedience to and love of freedom, other people use my passion as a way to manipulate me. BoingBoing is stepping over the line between simply trying to inform me and actively trying to manipulate me. Perhaps they're doing that for good reasons instead of ratings. I don't mean to smear them in any way. I just think you can tell me Congressman X is working on Bill Y without making it sound like Nazis building death camps in downtown Washington, DC. Sounds like a modern witch hunt. Jiminy Cricket, folks, politicians come up with ideas for bills all of the time. It's a healthy thing to have a Congress with all kinds of diverse personalities and opinions proposing all kinds of things. We don't need to start chasing them down the street with torches and pitchforks.
If he starts getting co-signers? If the bill looks likely to move out of committee? Much different story.
It's starting to feel more like "Lamar Smith is the devil! Let's all attack!" and less like "A bill was introduced that could dramatically change internet freedoms...."
I don't like that. People do things I disagree with all of the time. That does not make them my enemy. We are not all 15-year-olds and having to determine which person is part of the cool group or not. We do not have to make people into our enemies who just have a different opinion than we do, even if that opinion is heinous.
Not only is most of this material lifted, it doesn't cross my personal threshold as being important. Certainly not as important as the cell phone carriers saying they're getting over a million requests from law enforcement for tracking/surveillance data (A follow-up on that story would have been great). There's a great deal of hand-waving and vitriol here and very little reporting or providing unique value. Simply, it's lazy and manipulative.
This is the second time this week a BoingBoing story has hit the front of HN and it's been, well, sub-optimal. Here's hoping their luck changes.
ADD: And, if other commenters here are to believed, the freaking story isn't even accurate. Geesh.
I don't want to defend Lamar Smith or BoingBoing. I hate SOPA, sensationalism and politics. But I also get tired of people constantly surprised how ugly and dirty politics is. Some young folks don't know yet but that doesn't make this very noteworthy.
>Lamar Smith, the powerful committee chairman and corporatist archvillain who tried to ram through SOPA last year is now bent on reviving his slain monster and unleash it upon the earth.
Keep in mind that Cory is a novelist after all.
I suppose he considers to be preaching to the choir and is trying to whip us up into action.
Lamar Smith is the same guy who killed the "Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act of 2011", Proposed by Barney Frank and Ron Paul. It would have pushed legislation from the federal to the state level.
He is a staunch anti abortion activist, and has signed multiple bills to make abortion as difficult as possible, if not impossible. Even signing a bill to prevent a mother from taking her unborn over state lines to perform an abortion.
He has been the main driver behind SOPA from the start.
If you ever want to know my political opinion on something, just check Lamar Smiths' position and I'll be on the other end of it ;)
Who is this Lamar character, and how can we stop him???
I don't think there is a way to stop this type of manipulation. It is everywhere now and unless someone figures out a new formula, it is pointless. Trying to read comments other places than HN is a joke, filled with bipartisan opinions stated as facts. It really is tough to read anything now.
The axis of IP awesome actually. A pity that Australia's not on it.
1. 2011 Special 301 Report. Section II, Country Reports; pp.19-43. URL: http://www.washingtontradereport.com/Special301-2011.pdf
I assure you, he does not represent the majority.