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ESA invested heavily in PIPA lobbying

$190,000 given to two lobbying firms for PIPA-related activity

The Entertainment Software Association, which lobbies for the games industry in America and hosts each year's E3 event in Los Angeles, paid $190,000 to two lobbying companies for PIPA-related activities, it has been reported.

The figures were revealed to Kotaku, which names the Franklin Square Group and the Smith-Free Group as the two lobbying organisations involved.

Whilst the $190,000 was in part paid to lobby for some different causes, details of the transactions indicate that a large proportion of the money related to PIPA.

With the ESA's position on the recently shelved SOPA bill made clear, and rejected angrily by many of its members, it seems highly unlikely that the lobbying would be anything but supportive of the PIPA bill.

The costs of the lobbying do not include anything filed in the winter of 2011, nor since, as those papers have yet to be made publicly available.

PIPA varies only very slightly in its wording to the SOPA bill, and in most real senses would have exactly the same legal ramifications. The major difference is that SOPA was being debated by the House of Representatives, whilst PIPA was being pushed through the Senate. SOPA has been shelved, given a final knockout blow by The Whitehouse earlier this week.

PIPA remains live and under scrutiny, however, with many sites such as Wikipedia, Reddit and PC gaming site Rock Paper Shotgun staging a 'blackout' of content today in protest.

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