Some of my favorite sites — like Instructables, xkcd and Boing Boing — and others I use all the time — like YouTube and Wikipedia — are a product of and are only possible in an open internet that promotes the free exchange of knowledge.
Even a tiny site like mine is only possible in a world where I’m not in legal jeopardy if I link to a site anywhere online that has any links to copyright infringement (how could I possibly police that?).
Legislation currently pending in the US congress — H.R.3261 “Stop Online Piracy Act” (SOPA) and S.968 “PROTECT IP” (PIPA) — threaten, at a minimum, to significantly undermine our (that’s all of us on the web, people) ability to communicate with each other and encourage collaborative learning through linking to and direct sharing of resources and ideas. At worst, some of our favorite websites could disappear from the web without warning, and without due process of law.
So PLEASE take just a minute to contact your representatives in congress. For more information about what these bills could mean for the internet, there are more resources over at the EFF.