Unprecedented lobbying group takes stance against Internet regulation

Kelly Cordingley, Editor in Chief

Numerous Internet tycoons including Facebook, Google, Amazon and eBay have come together in the first-ever Internet Lobbying group, The Internet Association. They plan to take a unified stance on piracy, copyright, privacy and cybersecurity, according to The Washington Post online.
The Stop Online Piracy Act, SOPA, pushed the group to form.
SOPA was never enacted due to protests online.
According to CNN.com, if SOPA were in effect, YouTube would be unable to function.
“Something like SOPA or PIPPA wouldn’t have changed things overnight,” Advanced Placement American Government teacher Brian Mowry said. “It would have opened the door. We could have looked back 30 years and wonder how we got here.”
Both Microsoft and Apple have opted not to be part of The Internet Association.
The Policy Platform, as stated on The Internet Association’s website, is to “support policies that protect and promote Internet freedom — information should flow freely across national borders, uninhibited by tariffs, regulations and government censorship…”.
Mowry said he thinks a lobbying group coming together for the public interest differs from most lobbying group’s motives.
“It seems very interesting,” he said. “The only thing against it would be people for anti piracy, it’s very interesting.”
The full list of members include Amazon, AOL, eBay, Expedia, Facebook, Google, IAC, LinkedIn, Monster Worldwide, Rackspace, salesforce.com, TripAdvisor, Yahoo! and Zynga.
According to a 2012 press release from The Internet Association’s President and CEO Michael Beckerman, “These companies are all fierce competitors in the marketplace, but they recognize the Internet needs a unified voice in Washington.”
He goes on to explain the future of the Internet is at stake.
“Policy makers must understand that the preservation of that freedom is essential to vitality of the Internet itself and the resulting economic prosperity,” he said
The group will also lobby on obtaining visas for engineers and will try to influence regulations on cyber security, sales tax and revenue repatriation, according to an article on the Huffington Post online.