Hello Lobos,

By this point you have fought to the end of the first week of the spring semester. It seemed long, didn’t it? Then I suppose I have no need to remind you that it was only a four-day week, and that next week will be longer.

But enough with the bad news. I wanted to take a moment for shameless self-promotion in the form of calling attention to the Daily Lobo Boot Kamp. It takes place this weekend, and it’s a perfect chance for those interested in journalism to learn from professionals in the field at no cost.

Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with classes. But you can’t beat learning directly from professionals. I mean, these people are given money for their journalism abilities. So if you’d like to be given money someday for your journalism abilities, you should probably come to boot camp.

The boot camp is also an opportunity to meet editors from the news, sports and culture sections of the Daily Lobo, and they are looking to hire reporters.

If you want to write for us, or are even just curious, then this is your chance to talk directly to the people capable of hiring you. That said, get yourself to journalismbootkamp.wordpress.com for more information and to sign up.

Like I said, no payment necessary — we just need to know how many people are coming. Or if you want to rebel, you can just show up at the honors building on Saturday at 9 a.m. and go from there. We won’t like you as much, but you’ll still be welcome.

Self-promotion out of the way, I’d like to drag your attention elsewhere. If your eyes and ears were functioning Wednesday, you know that many Internet giants, Google and Wikipedia included, made changes to their websites in protest of SOPA/PIPA.

If for some reason you’re out of the loop, these jumbles of letters represent bills in Congress that could limit Internet freedom. Naturally, the Internet doesn’t enjoy being limited, so it limited itself for a day in protest via blackouts of popular sites. Trust me, it makes sense if you think about it long enough, or if you don’t think about it at all.

Regardless, early reports suggest that the protest might have changed some minds, as many senators and representatives switched sides on the debate. According to ProPublica, on Jan. 18 there were 80 supporters for the bill and 31 opponents. As of Jan. 19 there were only 65 supporters of the bills and 101 opponents.

As many of you know, I have been struggling to bring attention to this issue for a while, and I am glad for the success of the blackout, but the efforts shouldn’t end here.

Our culture seems to be obsessed with the idea of making one grand movement and expecting that it will change everything. Think of all the shitty rom-coms in which the protagonist admits his undying love for the female lead in some grandiose, contrived gesture and wins her over, as seen in “Love, Actually” and movies like it.

This storyline is paralleled in actions films, where there is always a battle for the fate of Earth, again as seen in “Independence Day” or any and all action movies, for the most part.

And that whole epic climax deal is fine, and even necessary, for storytelling; but we are not in a movie.

Life failed English, and doesn’t understand the concept of a climax. If we treat every victory as the only goal, if every grand gesture is the end, then we will lose. Change is gradual, not immediate.

There are still plenty of members of Congress who don’t get the Internet. Hell, maybe they do, but the money from Hollywood is more powerful. Who knows? I don’t. I do know there’s more work to be done in favor of Internet freedom and it can start right here in New Mexico. Tom Udall, Jeff Bingaman, and Ben R. Luján are all supporters of the bills. If you care about a free Internet, then let them know instead of complaining online or laughing about how SOPA/PIPA sounds like sopaipilla.

Do it now.

Chris Quintana