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GOP VP Choice Ryan Earned Ire of Anti-SOPA Activists GOP VP Choice Ryan Earned Ire of Anti-SOPA Activists GOP VP Choice Ryan Earned Ire of Anti-SOPA Activists GOP VP Choice Ryan Earned...

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Tech

GOP VP Choice Ryan Earned Ire of Anti-SOPA Activists

August 11, 2012

Presumptive GOP vice presidential nominee, Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., has not been an active player on tech issues but did find himself the target of Internet activists earlier this year over the controversial anti-piracy legislation known as the Stop Online Piracy Act.

Ryan was picked Saturday by presumptive GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney to be his running mate in this fall's election.

Ryan and other House members who were believed to be supporters of SOPA became the target of a campaign by users of the social news site reddit late last year. Even though Ryan never co-sponsored SOPA, he was viewed as a supporter of the legislation aimed at curbing piracy and counterfeiting on foreign websites. Critics argued the bill would stifle free speech and innovation on the Internet.

Ryan came out against the bill in January after reddit users launched an effort to unseat him. The bill and a Senate companion were later sidelined in the wake of growing opposition.

"While H.R. 3261, the Stop Online Piracy Act, attempts to address a legitimate problem, I believe it creates the precedent and possibility for undue regulation, censorship and legal abuse," Ryan said in his January statement on SOPA.

At least one reddit user on Saturday questioned whether activists should revive their campaign against Ryan even though he came out against SOPA. "Ryan has become Romney's running mate in the presidential election. While the original purpose of this subreddit was to stop the SOPA/PIPA supporting Ryan, could it, and more importantly, should it, be retooled to further campaign against Ryan, and if so, on what issues?," one poster asked.

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