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The OPEN Act as an experiment in digital democracy

(CNN) - With all the buzz about SOPA and PIPA you may have missed another important acronym: OPEN.

The OPEN Act is being touted by its sponsor as the moderate alternative to those other two anti-piracy bills, which are causing all kinds of controversy in U.S. Congress and on the Internet. Sites from Wikipedia to Google and - you're on the Internet, you've already seen all this - were protesting those other two bills by blacking out or altering their sites on Wednesday.

The reason I bring up the OPEN Act is not because it's a stellar piece of legislation. It may or may not be. But what it definitely represents is a new way of thinking about the legislative process - a Wiki-ed out, crowdsourced, digitized version of bill writing.

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