SOPA/PIPA mashup: how much Hollywood money did your lawmaker take? Name and shame with fellow voters

With PIPA off the legislative calendar and SOPA paused, this tool may seem a bit redundant, but it's a nice piece of advocacy work. Creator Jonathan Vanasco sez, "I tossed together a mashup over a few hours while sick on the couch. It uses the data from Propublica and SunlightLabs to create very-shareable profile pages for every Senator and Representative that were geared for 'viral': - language is designed to motivate people to read and share - leverages all the Facebook and Twitter tools to increase ranking - text and graphics are optimized for Facebook sharing, educating users about the issue and how much lobbyist money may be influencing things - automatic twitter suggestions for tweets with likely-to-share language ie: - challenge a senator to give back $x in media contributions - notes if a senator has received more media contributions than 50% of other senators - asks a senator how much money is needed for them to represent people, not lobbyists."

Hi. My name is Dianne Feinstein. (Thanks, Jonathan!)


  1. My representative, Yvette Clarke, opposed it.  My senators– Chuck Schumer & Kirsten Gillibrand– on the other hand co-sponsored it.  Shame shame, I know your name…& have been in contact to let you know I disapprove.  Rep Clarke got my vote in the last election cycle & will be getting it again, I can tell you that.

  2. Don’t you get it? Dianne Feinstein is better than you. She knows what is best to protect you from the big bad world out there. Any freedom she takes away is for our own good.

    (Gawd I can not stand that woman.)

  3. Sen. Gillibrand’s recent comments are turning my stomach.  “We must work to strike a balance between ending online piracy to protect New York jobs & ensuring Internet freedom so our tech community can continue to flourish.”   So, it’s all about the local economy, eh?  That’s the only reason to protect freedom–to support local NY businesses? 

  4. My Senator Sherrod Brown co-sponsered the darn thing.  Then I see the numbers and really he only took about $9,000 from the entertainment industry, which is lower than my Representative Betty Sutton, who took $18,000 and still hasn’t taken a public stand.  Senator Brown is generally on the side of the good guys, so I honestly think that he is one of the people who saw piracy and copyright protection and thought this was a good idea.  He is backpedaling a bit, saying he realizes there are problems with the bills that need to be addressed, so I’m not too mad at him right now.  

    1. Sad that, as voters, we now have to make judgments as to whether an envelope full of corporate money was thick enough to actually corrupt an elected official.  Shades of Rick Perry: “You think I can be bought for $5,000?”

  5. So, I eagerly go to the web site, and try to look up my representative.
    Then, the pull-down menu’s listing of the 50 states — and only the 50 states — reminds me that I live in the District of Columbia.

    One man, zero vote, baby!

  6. I think negative reinforcement can only go so far with Congress. I would like to see a tool created that would allow people to easily make small contributions to representatives in the House and Senate that take positions for or against bills that we approve of. That way there is a decent counter balance to all the lobbyist money. So far we have a pretty good stick but no carrot. 

    1. “That way there is a decent counter balance to all the lobbyist money”
      Why not just eliminate lobbying altogether?  
      The bribery or politicians should be illegal, not shared between citizens and corporations.

      1. Ideally this should be a goal, but constitutionally and politically that eliminating corporate lobbying is a monumentally complex feat. My idea is a stop gap measure that can easily be implemented now without trying to amend the constitution or even passing any legislation. 

  7. Here’s what I don’t get: if this was really “just about money,” then shouldn’t Silicon Valley have a MUCH larger influence on California senators than Hollywood?

  8. This is a good source of information, if a bit less to-the-point than I’d prefer. But doesn’t this approach defamation? He’s putting all of his commentary in the voice of Congresspeople, as if they stated it. I thought attributing false statements to an individual in a form meant for distribution was kind of a no-no.

  9. I came across this in another place. Yeah democracy for sale, what am I bid, going going – gone.
    Here is a list of Congressional politicians in favor of the bill known as SOPA and PIPA and the amounts of money they received from the SOPA backers who bought their favor in voting YES for both bills.

    The Winners are:
    Money Received from Pipa Sponsors:
    Sen. Charles Schumer [D, NY] $864,265
    Sen. Harry Reid [D, NV] $665,420
    Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand [D, NY] $556,525
    Sen. Barbara Boxer [D, CA] $544,424
    Sen. Patrick Leahy [D, VT] $416,250 (head sponsor of pipa btw)
    Sen. Michael Bennet [D, CO] $347,406
    Sen. Roy Blunt [R, MO] $341,700
    Sen. Robert Portman [R, OH] $337,525
    Sen. Richard Burr [R, NC] $275,950
    Sen. Patty Murray [D, WA] $272,750
    Money Received from Sopa Sponsors:

    Sen. Harry Reid [D, NV] $3,502,624
    Sen. Charles Schumer [D, NY] $2,648,770
    Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand [D, NY] $2,080,651
    Sen. Barbara Boxer [D, CA] $1,431,843
    Sen. Scott Brown [R, MA] $1,364,872
    Sen. Robert Portman [R, OH] $1,363,009
    Sen. Patrick Toomey [R, PA] $1,291,744
    Sen. Michael Bennet [D, CO] $1,019,172
    Sen. Mark Kirk [R, IL] $911,296
    Sen. Patrick Leahy [D, VT] $905,310
    Who sold themselves out, and who sold the justice system down the river for money. These are the political whores who took money, to support the most damaging bills that would put control of the global internet into the hands of the Hollywood directors.
    Get the money out of politics. Vote out these people is the one way to clean house and clean out the corruption out of this government.

    Read more: 

  10. I think the linked website is a fantastic idea, but I’d also like to propose a new, modified version of Godwin’s Law:

    “”As an online discussion about free speech grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving China, Iran and/or North Korea approaches 1.”

  11. Can we have a graph with the money that these representatives received from the entertainment industry, and their positions on the bill?

    Assuming there’s a strong correlation, I think that would be an even more powerful “name and shame.”

    Indeed, such a tool would be great for all sorts of issues.

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