The temporary shuttering of several of the internet's most popular websites in protest of SOPA and PIPA has (finally) succeeded in getting cable and broadcast news networks to pay attention to the controversy surrounding the two anti-digital piracy bills. Even Fox News is covering the SOPA protests, albeit in their own uniquely horrible way.
This morning on America's Newsroom, Claudia Cowan filed this report on the SOPA blackouts:
First, let's note what they left out of the report. Fox News' parent company, News Corp., is one of the many media conglomerates supporting SOPA. A disclosure to that effect should have been included, but wasn't.
And that leads us to what they did include. At one point in the report, Cowan says of Google's participation in the anti-SOPA protests: "Some call this ironic, since Google's business is to link users to various sites, essentially, critics contend, stealing other people's content every day."
The "some say" construction is a favorite of Fox News', and in this case we actually know who the "some" are that are saying these things about Google: News Corp. chairman Rupert Murdoch.
Murdoch is a strong proponent of SOPA and very much dislikes Google, which he argues is the internet's "piracy leader" because links to websites that offer pirated content show up in Google search results.
This argument, it should be noted, makes absolutely no sense and demonstrates the profound technical ignorance of a man with huge influence over tech policy.
But it makes enough sense for Fox News, which reported the absurd spin from its parent company on SOPA without noting their parent company's support for the bill.