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Better News - ESA Backs Away From SOPA

With the grace of a recently dumped loser shouting, "Well... I never loved you anyway!" as he starts crying, the Entertainment Software Association have announced they're no longer supporting SOPA. Which is a bit like announcing you no longer support England in the 1994 World Cup.

We contacted the ESA two weeks ago to ask them about their position, and whether they would consider changing it at least until the bills were rewritten. We were ignored. We also contacted every member of the ESA, and were ignored by the vast majority of them. As were Joystiq. Not exactly impressive. But now both bills are on hiatus and looking pretty wounded, at this point, as reported by Giant Bomb, they've crept out from behind their upturned table and issued the statement below.

"From the beginning, ESA has been committed to the passage of balanced legislation to address the illegal theft of intellectual property found on foreign rogue sites. Although the need to address this pervasive threat to our industry's creative investment remains, concerns have been expressed about unintended consequences stemming from the current legislative proposals. Accordingly, we call upon Congress, the Obama Administration, and stakeholders to refocus their energies on producing a solution that effectively balances both creative and technology interests. As an industry of innovators and creators, we understand the importance of both technological innovation and content protection and are committed to working with all parties to encourage a balanced solution."

S'funny, because we (along with many others) pointed out those unintended consequences weeks ago, and it seems they've only just noticed them. After the bills had already been withdrawn. The bills they funded up to $190,000 toward last year, and likely more since. The bills they refused to speak against with multiple opportunities before Wednesday's collapse of support. The ones that were leading some sites to organise a boycott of E3 this year.

I'm just saying, waiting until today - it's not so impressive. But hey, we were campaigning for them not to endorse it in its current form, so I guess that's happened. Now it's not there to endorse.

(And yeah, I totally dropped a foot-to-ball reference.)

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