ORIGINAL: Hi, I am Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia, and if you care about justice and the future of Internet freedom, Demand Progress and I need your help. This will only take a few seconds, but you can really help us change things for the better.
Richard O'Dwyer is a 24 year old British student at Sheffield Hallam University in the UK. He is facing extradition to the USA and up to ten years in prison, for creating a website - TVShack.net – which linked (similarly to a search-engine) to places to watch TV and movies online.
O'Dwyer is not a US citizen, he's lived in the UK all his life, his site was not hosted there, and most of his users were not from the US. America is trying to prosecute a UK citizen for an alleged crime which took place on UK soil.
The Internet as a whole must not tolerate censorship in response to mere allegations of copyright infringement. As citizens we must stand up for our rights online.
Please sign on at right here to join me in demanding that British authorities refuse to extradite O'Dwyer, and that US officials cease persecuting him.
When operating his site, Richard O'Dwyer always did his best to play by the rules: on the few occasions he received requests to remove content from copyright holders, he complied. His site hosted links, not copyrighted content, and these were submitted by users.
Copyright is an important institution, serving a beneficial moral and economic purpose. But that does not mean that copyright can or should be unlimited. It does not mean that we should abandon time-honored moral and legal principles to allow endless encroachments on our civil liberties in the interests of the moguls of Hollywood.
Richard O'Dwyer is the human face of the battle between the content industry and the interests of the general public. Earlier this year, in the fight against SOPA and PIPA, the public won its first big victory. This could be our second.
This is why I am petitioning the UK's Home Secretary Theresa May to stop the extradition of Richard O'Dwyer, and asking the United States to end his prosecution. I hope you will join me.
- Jimmy Wales, Wikipedia founder
Just add your name at right to sign on and email UK and US authorities.
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