21 March 2013
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Blog
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CISPA is Back: Protect Internet Freedom and Join the Protest on Your WordPress Blog

We defeated CISPA once before but it’s back and internet freedom is under attack again. The Internet Defense League is an online activist group that has organized to help defend internet freedoms and make people aware of bills that threaten your right to privacy. They’ve put together a “Cat Signal“, which coordinates a large number of websites to simultaneously display a notice to their users. This is done by embedding a bit of javascript on your site. When the Cat Signal goes out, your site is ready to join in the protest.


Get the Cat Signal

What is CISPA and why should I care?

CISPA essentially gives federal agencies unlimited access to virtually any of your personal data and online communication without a warrant. Backers of the bill include AT&T, Verizon, Facebook and Microsoft. The Electronic Frontier Foundation outlines a few of the more objectionable provisions included in CISPA:

  • Eviscerating existing privacy laws by giving overly broad legal immunity to companies who share users’ private information, including the content of communications, with the government.
  • Authorizing companies to disclose users’ data directly to the NSA, a military agency that operates secretly and without public accountability.
  • Broad definitions that allow users’ sensitive personal information to be used for a range of purposes, including for “national security,” not just computer and network security.

This affects all of us – whether you’re a blogger, online business owner, developer, or designer. CISPA is being promoted in the name of “cybersecurity”, but it has nothing to do with security. It’s nothing more than a government attempt to grasp at more power and rob you of your privacy. This is bad news for everyone, even if you’re not American.

How To Add the Cat Signal to Your WordPress Site:


Cat Signal modal window urges visitors to take action

WordPress users have a new tool to help shut down this civil liberties nightmare. If you don’t want to have to mess with the code in your theme’s templates, install the new Internet Defense League Cat Signal plugin for WordPress. This plugin will automatically load either the modal window or the banner Cat Signal when there is an active campaign from the Internet Defense League. You can select between the two via the settings page.

The modal window will immediately capture your visitor’s attention and urge them to take action to stop legislation that violates your privacy on the internet. Adding it to your site spreads awareness and essentially makes you a part of the internet’s Emergency Broadcast System. The House is expected to vote on the bill in April, so right now is your chance to join in the protest and make sure this bill does not pass.

Many thanks to WordPress developer Chris Reynolds for creating this plugin. You can download Internet Defense League Cat Signal plugin for free from the WordPress plugin repository.

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