Once again, it’s time for our democratically elected panel of experts to hand down their unfunded mandates!
Did you know you can get music, movies, and games for free until they catch you? Well, not anymore! A bunch of old white men who can barely use their Blackberrys came up with a plan: Nuke the Internet to save it. SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) and PIPA (Protect IP Act) sought — without due-process hassles — to lock down any website where pirated (or merely borrowed) images/files/ideas lived, along with any site that linked to them. Which only covered every website that exists.
A popular uprising made the bills’ proponents
spray their pants brown in girly fear withdraw support. But the Entertainment Software Association hung on until long after the Internet feasted on SOPA’s rotting corpse.
What have we learned from all this, panel of experts?
"Ha HA! Those fools be underestimatin' the popularity and multifaceted smells of yer modern-day pirate! Now I’ll sail me dread ship into Chinese waters and pick up the complete series of Mad Men on bootleg DVDs for three dollars!"
- LeChuck, The Secret of Monkey Island
"The complete annihilation of the largest, most useful information network in human history is a small price to pay to destroy a few pirates. I feel the same way about Australia and South America. And three or four other continents."
- Ryu Hayabusa, Ninja Gaiden 3
"I've seen, read, and stored everything ever created. Just try to partition me. I'll cut a bitch."
- Cortana, Halo 4
"Those dirty crime monkeys disrespect America and God with their thieving ways! And there's only one thing you do with commies like the Pope! You put 'em in a pretty dress and give 'em a sweet kiss goodnight! WITH BOTH LIPS!"
- The Soldier, Team Fortress 2
"I'm a life-long professional thief. If you're stealing two-dollar songs and $60 games, you seriously need to get more ambitious. Just look at those guys in Congress…I…I'm humbled."
- Sly Cooper, The Sly Collection
"You want to stop piracy? The man who briefly topped our multiplayer leaderboards also ran one of the bigger illegal file-sharing sites. But to avoid a ban and get to number one, he had to buy and play a legitimate, retail copy of our game…which is the most pirated software product of all time. I call that a win."
- Captain Price, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3
"I'm ready, man! The second they scheduled a vote on SOPA, I went and bought every piece of anime and porn in the San Fernando Valley. I've basically recreated the Internet in my garage."
- Isaac Clarke, Dead Space 2
"I love the Internets! One time, my buddy Keith got himself a laptop because he said that's the only way to get dates in the 21st century? And for the first few hours, it was great! We saw all kinds a'stuff! But then the battery went dead, and we didn't have a replacement, but Keith figures it's all just electricity, right? So he got some jumper cables and hooks one end to his '77 Dodge Charger, and well, I think what went wrong was he only got a cheapie laptop, and that's a powerful car…."
- Ellis, Left 4 Dead 2
"I cannot understate how damaging SOPA's retraction is. I planned to hire 500 workers to plant incriminating links and images all over my competitors’ websites. The economy needs those new jobs."
- Rufus Shinra, Final Fantasy 7
"It was pretty great that sites like Reddit and Wikipedia went dark in protest for a day. I just wish the people who wrote SOPA actually knew what those things were."
- Alyx Vance, Half-Life 2