Makers of hit MOBA title League of Legends, Riot Games, has spoken out officially on its community forum, declaring itself as firmly against the Stop Online Piracy Act that is being pushed through American congress.
“These bills are a misguided attempt to curb the illegal piracy of copyrighted content (like movies, music and games),” said CEO and co-founder of Riot, Brandon Beck.
Cleverly bringing it back round to his own game, Beck described an instance where SOPA could be abused thanks to its vague wording. “Under the law, ad networks, payment providers and internet service providers are now potentially liable for their user’s infringement. These services could then be compelled to immediately remove support for a streaming website or face a costly legal battle – at a minimum cutting off financial means, and likely shutting off the site entirely.”
Mr Beck even went as far as to say that SOPA could impact LoL so severely that it could bring an end to the streaming of games altogether. He also said that it would “raise serious constitutional free speech issues, and could even compromise the basic security infrastructure of the internet.”
The Stop Online Piracy Act was originally drafted in an effort to curb overseas piracy which sees non-US websites host movies and TV shows for free. However, the problem comes when these laws are applied to websites within the US, or those that are using content for parody or other purposes. The fact that action is so swift against what a media conglomerate sees as copyright infringement means there is little room for argument.
While many accept that something similar to SOPA might one day be signed into law, the language in the current bill is far too vague and broad sweeping.