I’ll be honest, when I started hearing about Sen. Ron Wyden’s (D-Ore.) planned alternative to SOPA and PIPA, something he was calling the OPEN Act, I was dubious. Wyden is the guy who railed against PIPA to the point where he promised to filibuster it and use every procedural trick in his procedural bag of tricks to block it from ever coming to a vote. So whatever Wyden was proposing as an alternative must surely be so far from the other side that it wouldn’t get traction.

I may have spoken too soon.

Now Sen. Pat Leahy (D-Ver.), the head of the Senate Judiciary Committee and a major player in the copyright debate, says he will consider supporting the OPEN Act. Yeah, I know, that doesn’t sound like much but it’s an indication that Leahy saw the backlash against SOPA/PIPA and sees a chance to get out of this debate with at least some legislative accomplishment. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) has already signed on to sponsor the OPEN Act in the House. Issa was a big opponent of SOPA.


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Follow John Moe at @johnmoe