Hollywood is upset, upset that President Obama, along with everyone else outside of Hollywood, doesn't approve of the Stop Online Piracy Act, which would give the government power to restrict First Amendment Rights on the internet. Hollywood argues their intellectual property is getting ripped off by websites that sell counterfeit material and believe they should be able to own, sell and be credited for their intellectual property. It is understandable Hollywood feels this way, but SOPA takes away the rights of others to protect Hollywood. Now, because of Obama's stance, Hollywood elites are pulling their campaign dollars for the president they once held up as a Messiah.
So far the most outspoken mogul against the Obama administration on this issue has been Rupert Murdoch who on Saturday told his new Twitter audience: “So Obama has thrown in his lot with Silicon Valley paymasters who threaten all software creators with piracy, plain thievery.” But I’ve learned that other moguls privately are having “direct and personal conversations” with Obama and his administration and the Democratic Party. Several moguls have informed Obama’s newly anointed Hollywood re-election liason to the entertainment community Nicole Avant and her husband who is helping her, Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos, that they are pulling out of major fundraisers planned over the next few days and won’t participate in any more headed by Obama and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (whom they see as in the pocket of the Internet giants like Google).
The moguls are reminding Obama et al that, in the words of one studio chief, “God knows how much money we’ve given to Obama and the Democrats and yet they’re not supporting our interests. There’s been no greater supporters of him than we’ve been from the first day and the first fundraisers continuing until he was elected. We all were pleased. And, at its heart institutionally, Hollywood supports the Democrats. Now we need the administration to support us. This is a very important time for Hollywood. The issue at hand — piracy — is a legitimate concern. But Google and those Internet guys have been swiftboating the entertainment industry by saying we’re trying to shut down the Internet just because we don’t want them to advertise pirated movies. As for other claims, we make 24. We don’t make national security problems.”
The boycott even extends to many of the moguls’ families who also are big Obama and Democratic Party donors. The situation is serious because many moguls and/or their families comprise Obama’s top bundlers in the TV/movie/music biz. Bundlers as defined by opensecrets.org are “people with friends in high places who, after bumping against personal contribution limits, turn to those friends, associates, and, well, anyone who’s willing to give, and deliver the checks to the candidate in one big ‘bundle’.” These donors direct more money to the candidates than anyone else. As of September 2011 these 357 elite bundlers were directing at least $55,900,000 for Obama’s re-election efforts — money that has gone into the coffers of his campaign as well as the Democratic National Committee, according to opensecrets.org. That figure by now has significantly increased and will continue to do so.
Hollywood elites should ask themselves this question: Do they really need all of that intellectual property that they worked so hard to develop? They argue all the time that the rich should pay more to government because they don't really need everything they earn. How is this any different? It isn't fair that these counterfeit sites aren't as talented as the actors or movie moguls! What ever happened to spreading the wealth around?
Flashback to the good old days: