Beachbody on SOPA & PIPA

I’m sure you are all well aware of the “Stop Online Piracy Act“, or SOPA, and the “Protect IP Act“, or PIPA, proposed by Congress last week.  If you use any social media or pay attention to any news outlet it would have been pretty hard to miss.  Obviously online pirating is a huge problem in the U.S. and abroad.  Pretty much everyone who makes music, movies, software, and in this case, workout DVD’s loses a ton of revenue due to the rampant copying and illegal sharing of their products.  So SOPA and PIPA are Congress’ attempt to fight against the online pirating and to protect U.S. copyright law.  When this hit the news outlets, there was an immediate and very negative response from almost everyone it seemed.  Everyone was pretty upset, and I agree with them, because SOPA and PIPA went way too far into internet censorship.

What you may not have heard is Beachbody’s stance on SOPA & PIPA.  Initially, Jonathan Gelfand, Beachbody’s Chief Legal Officer, wrote a response and posted it on Carl Daikeler’s website.  He did acknowledge that it is a very sensitive situation and that they were open to hearing from Beachbody’s clients.  Initially, Beachbody’s official position was in support of SOPA & PIPA.  He explained how Beachbody fights a seemingly never-ending fight against piracy and also said, “we lose more than $100 million every year to counterfeiting and digital content theft, and spend millions more annually to fight online piracy. That loss hurts our ability to develop product, and our coaches’ ability to build their legitimate independent businesses.”  You can read his entire initial explanation here:

Obviously, it does make some sense as to why Beachbody was initially in support of SOPA & PIPA.  Their business loses an enormous amount of money every year because of people stealing their products, and they do spend a ton of money attempting to fight this problem.  So from their business’ perspective, it makes sense to support an act that would attempt to stop this problem.  But after posting this, the response was overwhelmingly negative from Beachbody’s customers and coaches.  Most people see these acts as giving the government way too much power to censor the internet, and they were not happy that Beachbody was supporting those acts.

What was awesome to see is how Beachbody listened to their customers and coaches.  The very next day, a new post was up on Carl’s blog.  Beachbody had heard loud and clear what their customers and coaches were saying.  They acknowledged what everyone was saying, and effectively pulled their support for SOPA & PIPA.  Jonathan stated, “If balanced legislation can be proposed that is supported by all sides on this issue we would support it, but as currently written and in light of the response from our Coaches and community, we can no longer support SOPA or PIPA.”  You can read the entire response here,

Beachbody is still committed to stopping online theft of their products, which I think they should be, but they want to ensure that the rights of free speech and an open internet are not trampled on to fight that fight.  I’m proud to represent a company that actually listens to its customers, and is willing to change their stance simply because of an overwhelming response from their customers.  I think Beachbody handled this extremely well in my opinion.

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Fuck SOPA and PIPA! thank god they are delaying them for now, but they should get rid of these 2 for good.

Coach Tom
Coach Tom

With the massive amount of negative feedback I'm guessing they won't try to bring those back again.

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