How to get around SOPA and censorship
With everyone up in arms about SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act), people have been busy protesting and writing letters to their congresspersons. Others have taken to the blogosphere and are spreading the protest against Internet censorship.
Broadband Expert has written about DaJaz1, a victim of the current DOJ/ICE operations. They were put out of business for one year before ICE returned their web site explaining they had no case against them. The Father of the Internet, Vint Cerf has also urged congress not to pass the SOPA or PIPA legislation.
Along with PIPA (Protect Intellectual Property Act) the federal government is allowed to re-route DNS entries and block certain IP addresses as well as seize domains and servers hosting them. They can do this just by requesting it and can completely shut down web sites without the benefit of a trial or due process of the law.
Other people have been busy proactively by developing tools with which to combat government measures to censor the internet. SPOA requires the ISPs and hosting providers to monitor web connections and block certain sites.
Broadband Expert came across two tools that may help you combat Internet censorship. Besides getting around some of the SOPA and PIPA blocks, you can also get around country firewalls like those that they employ in China to censor the Internet.
One is The Pirate Bay Dancing. TPBD routes users’ packets through a randomized set of foreign DNS servers to deliver them to the desired web site. Developed by a group that calls itself MAFIAAFire, The Pirate Bay Dancing is a Free Firefox add-in.
MAFIAAFire explained: “DNS and IP blocking is probably the most dangerous part of SOPA/PIPA in terms of ‘breaking the Internet,’ so we tackled that first. We will be going after the other parts of SOPA in later releases but probably not in ‘our usual plugin form’ – the other parts require different solutions that we have already started work on.”
Another tool is called DeSopa. It was developed by T Rizk. DeSopa also uses foreign DNS servers and you can configure it to automatically run when you request particular web sites.
It is a FireFox add-in and it is also free.
Its author, T Rizk, said “I feel that the general public is not aware of the gravity of SOPA and Congress seems like they are about to cater to the special interests involved, to the detriment of Internet, for which I and many others live and breathe. It could be that a few members of congress are just not tech savvy and don’t understand that it is technically not going to work, at all. So here’s some proof that I hope will help them err on the side of reason and vote SOPA down.”
If you do not have FireFox, install it and then install The Pirate Bay Dancing and DeSopa. If you do it before SOPA and PIPA are passed into law, you will be prepared.