The Boycott SOPA Android app takes political activism to a whole new level. The new app works in a creative way, as it scans barcodes and tells you whether an object’s manufacturer/publisher is a supporter of the very unpopular Stop Online Piracy Act. In order for the app to work users first have to install the ZXing Barcode Scanner app, once installed, you can then simply go around pointing your phone’s camera at product barcodes.
What is this SOPA thing all about?
The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), is a bill that expands the ability of U.S. law enforcement and copyright holders to fight online trafficking in copyrighted intellectual property and counterfeit goods (wiki). The proposed bill would allow the U.S. Department of Justice, as well as copyright holders, to seek court orders against websites accused of enabling or facilitating copyright infringement.
SOPA would impact internet service providers and DNS services because it would require them to block access to infringing sites. From a technology standpoint, the implementation of such a global blacklist could break the DNS system and undermine its security. This law is also so broadly written that some think it could let the government shut down any website that it wants, not just infringing ones. It would give the US the power to create the same type of firewall used by China to prevent the free flow of information out of its country.
Now do you see what the big hoopla is all about? So, when your sitting at home with not much to do, fire up your Boycott for Android app and start scanning the barcodes of all your books, CDs, movies, and games — as you’d be surprised who supports this awful bill.