Today, the Wikipedia community announced its decision
to black out the English-language Wikipedia for 24 hours, worldwide, beginning at 05:00 UTC on Wednesday, January 18 (you can read the statement from the Wikimedia Foundation here
). The blackout is a protest against proposed legislation in the United States -- the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA)
in the U.S. House of Representatives, and the PROTECT IP Act (PIPA)
in the U.S. Senate -- that, if passed, would seriously damage the free and open Internet, including Wikipedia.
This will be the first time the English Wikipedia has ever staged a public protest of this nature, and it's a decision that wasn't lightly made. Here's how it's been described by the three Wikipedia administrators who formally facilitated the community's discussion. From the public statement
, signed by User:NuclearWarfare, User:Risker and User:Billinghurst:
Go Here to read more: English Wikipedia anti-SOPA blackout - Wikimedia Foundation