Tip: Virtually every government is a dictatorship.
It is to wake people up to corporate attempts to become dictators of what people can see or post on the web; Wikipedia and EP are on their hit list. If the bills before congress pass, private corporations will be able to censor at will, with no meaningful recourse from those who have been censored.
I just used wikipedia so not sure how well they can block users.Maybe they are just saying that.
I think they are protesting against SOPA. The laws have been written to protect copyrighted material but the laws look very open ended and could end up really censoring everyone. Imagine this, you post a video on your EP profile and getting sued for sharing copyrighted material or you go to sell something that you bought on Craigslist and get sued again for selling copyrighted material. The US government will shutdown these sites to protect against copyright infringements.
The PIPA and SOPA laws mean that any site can be blocked by huge corperations who just have to claim that a site infringes on their copy right. This does not even have to be true the site will still be blocked. Wiki is protesting these lesiglative preposals
lol. my head still hurts trying to think about how wiki wins out of it. risk of starting a fight. silly americans. isnt freedom of speech there first rule? governments don't like being embarrassed, then they should stop doing dumb $hit. not censor the net.