Issa seeks feedback on online piracy bill

House Oversight chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) and fellow backers of a new online piracy bill offered in the House as an alternative to the controversial Stop Online Piracy Act have posted the bill's text on the Internet in hopes of soliciting feedback from the public on its provisions.

The website, KeepTheWebOpen.com, features the text of the Online Protection and Enforcement of Digital Trade (OPEN) Act and allows users to suggest and track changes to the bill's language. The site uses the new MADISON platform Issa has proposed as part of his transparency initiative the DATA Act.

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"I've heard MPAA's response to the #OPEN Act. I believe American artists and innovators – not to mention you, the digital citizen - deserve better than soundbites," Issa said after the movie industry lobbying group argued the bill "goes easy on Internet piracy."

"That's why we launched this site. So, I'm waiting for MPAA's constructive, transparent feedback right here on KeepTheWebOPEN.com." 

The OPEN Act would authorize the International Trade Commission to issue cease-and-desist orders against foreign websites dedicated to copyright infringement. Ad networks and payment processors would be required to cut ties with those rogue sites, an approach favored by Google and other Web firms.

SOPA and its Senate counterpart PROTECT IP would give the government and copyright holders broader authority to demand third parties including search engines remove links to rogue sites.

SOPA in particular has been criticized by Web firms that argue its overly broad language could ensnare social networks and other legitimate sites.

This story was updated at 4:58 p.m. on Monday, December 12.