Facebook management remained silent regarding any potential blackout
prior to today's protests, CEO Mark Zuckerberg spoke out against the
bills earlier today.
Mentioned within a public Facebook status update on his personal account,
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerburg spoke out against both the Stop Online
Piracy Act (SOPA) and PROTECT IP Act (PIPA) Internet piracy bills.
Within the post, Zuckerberg states "The Internet is the most
powerful tool we have for creating a more open and connected world. We
can’t let poorly thought out laws get in the way of the Internet’s
development. Facebook opposes SOPA and PIPA, and we will continue to
oppose any laws that will hurt the Internet.” Zuckerberg went on to
encourage his 10.9 million subscribers to contact their
local congressmen and advocate pro-Internet views on the subject of SOPA
Zuckerberg also linked to Facebook’s official Anti-Piracy Bills page
that details Facebook’s stance on the issue as well as a plea
to Congress not to rush the process of approving the two bills. In
addition to using Facebook to spread the message about the two
bill, Zuckerburg posted "Tell your congressmen you want them to be pro-Internet. My Facebook post is here,” on his dormant Twitter account @finkd.
While Zuckerberg has approximately 120,000 followers on the account, he
hasn’t used the social network to publish an update since March 13,
2009. In addition, today’s tweet increases his total tweets to 19 for
the entire lifetime of the account.
While Facebook didn’t actively participate in the blackout protests
seen on Wikipedia, Reddit and Google, Facebook users continued to post
responses regarding the proposed bills and many users shared Google’s
petition on the subject. However, many Twitter users found themselves at
the subject of ridicule as the @herpderpedia
Twitter account constantly posted retweets regarding complaints about
Wikipedia. Many high school and college students constantly complained
about not being able to access Wikipedia in regards to completing
homework or writing a research paper.