Online Piracy
5:26 pm
Sun January 27, 2013

The Day The Internet Went Dark And How It Changed History

A protester in Madrid, Spain, wears a Guy Fawkes mask associated with the hacker group Anonymous. A hacker claiming association with the group took down MIT's website to post a memorial to Internet activist Aaron Swartz.
Credit flickr/gaelx

A little over a year ago, Wikipedia, Google and thousands of other websites went dark. They were protesting an Internet privacy act being considered in Congress. It was the largest protest ever conducted on the Internet. And it worked.

One of its organizers was Aaron Swartz. Swartz advocated for the Internet to be free. His quest for free information got him in trouble.  He was caught trying to leak academic papers to the public. The US Department of Justice tried to make an example out of him. But he committed suicide.

Today, we hear an in-depth report on Swartz’s most successful campaign: the online protest that stopped SOPA, the Stop Online Piracy Act, from becoming law.

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