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Google Protest of Piracy Bills Upends Traditional Lobbying

An online protest led by Google Inc. and Facebook Inc. against U.S. anti-piracy bills illustrates how Internet companies are changing legislative debate in Washington.

Thirteen co-sponsors, eight in the Senate and five House members, began withdrawing their support for Hollywood-backed measures to combat piracy. Internet companies devoted home pages yesterday to opposing the bills, threatening a traditional lobbying effort led by the Motion Picture Association of America that assembled bipartisan support for the legislation.