By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

Sen. Brown on why he oppose anti-piracy bill

Back in November, I was one of many people who signed an online petition to stop an attempt by the media industry to persuade Congress that it should pass anti-piracy laws that threatened First Amendment rights on the Internet. A little while ago U.S. Sen. Scott Brown sent an email to those who signed that petition. Here’s the full text:

Dear Dan,

Thank you for contacting me regarding the Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property (PROTECT IP) Act (S. 968).  I am strongly opposed to this legislation.

As you know, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) introduced S. 968 on May 12, 2011.  The PROTECT IP Act aims to provide law enforcement with tools to stop websites dedicated to online piracy and the sale of counterfeit goods.  However, many Americans feared that S. 968 would stifle freedom of expression and harm the Internet.

The Internet has been a source of dynamic growth in our economy and is responsible for employing many people in Massachusetts.  I have very serious concerns about increased government interference in this area and the effect of the PROTECT IP Act and the Stop Online Piracy Act (H.R. 3261, House companion legislation) on the Internet.  On January 18, 2012, I announced my opposition to the PROTECT IP Act.  You will be pleased to know that with opposition to the bill mounting, on January 20, 2012, the Senate Majority Leader announced that the scheduled vote on the PROTECT IP Act has been indefinitely postponed.

Again, thank you for sharing your views with me.  As always, I value your input and appreciate hearing from you.  Should you have any additional questions or comments, please feel free to contact me or visit my website at

Scott P. Brown
United States Senator

Good for Brown — both for his opposition to this draconian legislation, and for letting his constituents know where he stands.

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1 Comment

  1. Bill Peregoy

    I have filled out a number of these online petitions and one consistent result is that the Brown offices are the only ones to respond in a non-generic way. The Kerry and Tsongas offices either fail to respond at all or give a generic response that indicates no real familiarity with the issue at hand.

    I may disagree with a lot of Brown’s policies, but I admire his constituent service. I think this is one area he excels at and may be the reason he stands a chance to keep his seat this Fall.

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