My letter to Senator Lee:
My name is Justin Carmony, and I am the C.T.O. for Dating DNA, LLC, a company that makes iPhone Apps. This is my first time writing a senator, but I feel it is important to convey my thoughts on SOPA and PIPA.
We have struggled with people downloading our Apps from 3rd Party Websites and not paying for them. We are able to monitor and track these “cracked” apps when they connect to our services, and these “cracked apps” number in the hundreds of thousands over time. That is potentially millions of dollars in lost revenue.
However, I do NOT support SOPA, PIPA, or bills like it that give “blacklist” or “takedown” authority without due process.
Even though we struggle with piracy, these bills will do very little in preventing unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials. However, they are extremely dangerous in terms of abuse against legitimate businesses. Even though the cost of piracy can be great, we already have tools and laws to help us minimize piracy. We work hard at providing a great service, and we’ve even successfully turned “pirates” into “legal, legitimate customers.” SOPA & PIPA will do very little in helping us stop real piracy, but will also expose us to “takedowns claims” without any oversight or due process.
There is already testimonies on legal records of Media Companies such as Warner Music and Universal Music group admitting to using DMCA to take down content they had no copyright ownership to. Their motives instead were to silence groups being critical of them. (see “A Business Person’s SOPA Primer” — http://avoidingagoatrodeo.com/2011/12/26/a-businesspersons-sopa-primer/)
Please, as my elected representative, pull your support of SOPA. Our small business would not survive a “takedown” if a competitor used SOPA with false claims. We depend on the internet to keep us in business. I hope you can see, and understand, that due process and legal oversight should still apply to the internet.