UmeNow Applauds Senator Rubio for Backing Away from SOPA and Censorship but Questions Why

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"Privacy Mom" wants to know why Senator Rubio co-sponsored a bill that would increase government power, lead to more government not less, and kill start up businesses in Florida.

Florida internet business owners and residents deserve a clear explanation from Republican Senator Marco Rubio and Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the most prominent democratic supporter of a bill that favors censorship and threatens small business.

The leader of UmeNow, the private social network based in South Florida and led by the outspoken advocate known as "Privacy Mom," announced today that she applauds Florida's Republican Senator Marco Rubio for standing down on a bill that he originally co-sponsored. But she also has some tough questions. "Yesterday, Senator Rubio surprised everyone when he decided to renounce a bill he defended -- a bill that the internet community sees as dangerous because it legalizes internet censorship and allows the U.S. government to immediately close down any website accused of allowing pirated material to appear, even if only one person using the site is guilty. While we applaud Senator Rubio for this change, we want to know why," said Evelyn Castillo-Bach, the Florida resident, business owner, and founder of two private social networks that have banned tracking, all ads, and allows members to post anonymously and use any name they want.

"Senator Rubio must have known that his bill, Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA) and the house version Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), would increase government power, lead to more government not less, and kill start up businesses in Florida. Why did he co-sponsor the bill in the first place and why is he suddenly withdrawing his support now? What changed? Florida business owners and residents deserve a clear explanation," says Castillo-Bach, the outspoken privacy advocate and founder of GoCNCN.com and UmeNow.com.

"Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz needs to explain herself too. She is among the most prominent supporters of the house version of Rubio's bill, known as the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), which drew massive protests from sites like Wikipedia and Google on Wednesday," says Castillo-Bach. "We want to know why she is still supporting it?" Wasserman Schultz (Fla.) is the highest-ranking Democrat among the bill's original sponsors in the House; the bill's supporters have been targeted by the growing grassroots backlash against the legislation from the technology community.

Marco Rubio is a Republican senator from Florida. He was elected in 2010. He is the former speaker of the Florida House who drove Gov. Charlie Crist out of the Republican primary, then defeated Mr. Crist, who had campaigned as an independent.

Company Information:

Evelyn Castillo-Bach is the founder of UmeNow.com, a private social network for professionals, their families and friends. It launched in July 2011. She is also the founder of Collegiate Nation --known as GoCNCN.com-- the first and only private social network exclusively for college students. It launched in late 2009 and was reviewed by Read Write Web and the New York Times in 2010. In late 2011, the site was totally redesigned to meet student demands for more features. Today the site is used among 30 campuses throughout the United States among students who want secure communication.

Both UmeNow.com and GoCNCN.com - Collegiate Nation are known for fiercely protecting the privacy rights of its members. All third party apps and games are banned because they are back doors to extracting private information. Evelyn Castillo-Bach earned her M.S. in 1993 from Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. She has traveled extensively in Ethiopia and in the Balkans, accompanying her Danish husband who is a lawyer.

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Jennifer Wright
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