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Also this week, conservative think tank the Heritage Foundation, normally a strong supporter of copyright enforcement, voiced opposition to SOPA. The think tank has "serious and legitimate concerns" about SOPA's impact on Web security and freedom of speech, wrote James Gattuso, senior research follow in regulatory policy at Heritage.
SOPA, in allowing court orders to block the resolution of IP addresses by servers in the U.S., could entice Web users to "use less secure servers elsewhere to continue accessing blocked sites," he added.
SOPA still has strong support in Congress and among companies in several U.S. industries. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, one of the driving forces behind the bill, has said that more than 400 organizations have voiced support.
The bill would allow the U.S. Department of Justice and copyright holders to seek court orders blocking payment processors and online advertising networks from doing business with foreign sites accused of infringing copyright.
DOJ-requested court orders could also bar search engines from linking to the allegedly infringing sites. The court orders could require domain name registrars to stop resolving queries that direct traffic to those sites, and require Internet service providers to block subscriber access to sites accused of infringing.