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Computer Science: Important Legislative Initiatives: Copyright Legislation

Proposed Bills

These bills are still being considered and have not yet been voted into law.

Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA)

Goal of the Bill:

This bill was created to deal with multi-media piracy (copyright infringement) by restricting access to websites that host or facilitate the exchange of pirated content, especially overseas websites.

Latest Major Action:

12/16/2011 House committee/subcommittee actions. Status: Committee Consideration and Mark-up Session Held.

Passed Legistlation

These bills have been passed and have become laws.

Electronic Communications Privacy Act

Goal of the Bill:

Amends the 1968 wiretap law that dealt with "hard" telephone lines to include communications transmitted by wire. It applies to email, telephone conversations, and data stored electronically.

Latest Major Action:

10/21/1986 Became Public Law No: 99-508

Trademark Cyberpiracy Prevention Act

Goal of the Bill:

To keep cyber 'squatters' registering Internet sites with the intent of gaining trademarked sites to then re-sell to the trademark owner or a third party.

Latest Major Action:

10/27/1999 Message on House action received in Senate and at desk: House amendments to Senate bill.

Dropped Legislation

These bills were either never passed, or else were passed and then later removed.

Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act of 2011 (PIPA)

Goal of the Bill:

To give U.S. corporations and the government the right to seek affirmative legal action with any website that they see as enabling copyright infringement whether of U.S. origin or not.

Latest Major Action:

1/23/2012 Senate floor actions. Status: Cloture motion on the motion to proceed to S. 968 withdrawn by unanimous consent in Senate.

National Information Infrastructure Protection Act of 1996 (NIIPA)

Goal of the Bill:

Created to ammend Computer Fraud and Abuse Act to allow for federal prosecution for theft of trade secrets and hacking.

Latest Major Action:

2/8/1996 House committee/subcommittee actions. Status: Subcommittee Hearings Held.