One Friday earlier this month, Andrew Rasiej, the chairman of NY Tech Meetup and an old-school Internet evangelist, sent out an email to the 20,000 members of the group asking them to do something most had never even considered before: close their laptops, leave their coworking spaces, put their iPads down (but not—god no!—their smart phones, essential to live tweeting) and pick up a picket sign.
“The future of the NY tech community is in jeopardy,” the email read. “We are writing to call you to an Emergency NY Tech Meetup in New York on January 18 so that we can publicly demonstrate our collective dismay at the unprecedented attack currently being made on the Internet and our industry.”
Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley withdrew his support for the controversial Protect I.P. Act, better known as PIPA, last Wednesday, but that didn’t stop an angry PIPA opponent from hacking into his Twitter account today. As of this writing, over 20 Tweets have been sent from Senator Grassley’s account this afternoon that appear to be the work of a hacker.
“Yes I was hacked,” one of the Tweets said.
A few of the Tweets posted on Senator Grassley’s account indicate the hacker is upset over the senator’s initial support for PIPA, a bill designed to protect intellectual property and curb piracy that has drawn the ire of internet users.
“Chuck is a supporter of SOPA, PIPA, and ACTA, meaning he wants no privacy for private accounts,” read another one of the Tweets.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced this morning that his chamber would postpone a vote on PIPA, the controversial legislation to curb online piracy.
“In light of recent events, I have decided to postpone Tuesday’s vote on the PROTECT I.P. Act,” Mr. Reid said in a statement today.
The legislation under question had been the subject of furious protest. Earlier this week, hundreds marched on the offices of Senators Kirsten Gillibrand and Chuck Schumer to protest the bill, and websites like Wikipedia and Craigslist went dark. The bill has been opposed by the tech industry, but pushed by the film and recording industries, who say that piracy costs them billions of dollars a year.
Wikipedia, Craigslist and other websites are going black today to protest impending anti-piracy legislation. The DN has a good explainer here.
At his annual budget address, Andrew Cuomo proposed a new teacher evaluation system. pension reform and the consolidation of some government agencies.
The Times-Union says Cuomo needs to do more for mandate relief for cash-strapped counties and municipalities.
The leader of the state’s largest public sector union called Cuomo’s pension reforms “an assault on the middle class.”
State education commissioner John King kept up the heat on teacher evaluations in a conference call immediately after the speech.
The four GOP Senators who voted to legalize same-sex marriage received a big bump in campaign donations, which gay rights activists hope sends a signal to lawmakers across the country that they will back supporters of marriage equality, regardless of party.