Lawmakers renew push for “rogue websites” bill

by Stephan Kinsella on April 4, 2011

From Reuters:

Lawmakers renew push for “rogue websites” bill

Mon Apr 4, 5:59 pm ET

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A bipartisan group of lawmakers from both chambers of Congress on Monday vowed to pass legislation giving the U.S. Justice Department new authority to go after foreign and domestic websites that sell pirated music and movies and counterfeit goods.

“Online infringement and the sale of counterfeit goods cost American creators, producers, and businesses billions of dollars and results in the loss of hundreds of thousands of jobs,” Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy, a Democrat, told reporters.

Intellectual property theft is “one of the greatest threats to our economy today” because of the big role that copyrights, patents and trademarks play in boosting U.S. exports and productivity, said House of Representatives Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith, a Republican.

“If we’re going to have a healthy economy, we need to have a healthy IP sector,” Smith said.

Leahy said he would push forward with a new version of a “rogue websites” bill that cleared his committee last year by a vote of 19-O but did not get a vote in the full Senate.

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