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Small Business Briefing

Anti-piracy bills could spell big problems for small businesses Add to ...

The latest news and information for entrepreneurs from across the web universe, brought to you by the Report on Small Business team. Follow us on Twitter @GlobeSmallBiz

It's not just big companies like Wikipedia, Google or Reddit that could be affected by the the Stop Online Piracy Act and the Protect Intellectual Property Act, which are currently under consideration in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate. Small business owners are also at the mercy of these anti-piracy bills.

More related to this story

Paul Tassi is a Forbes contributor, but his bread and butter comes from selling ads on his movie and game review website Unreality. Like other entrepreneurs who run this type of website, part of his daily ritual involves linking to other websites, posting photos, artwork and embedding YouTube videos. In his article, titled How Sopa Could Ruin My Life, he laments the fundamental flaws of the act and how, if passed, it could destroy his business and others like it.

For additional perspectives on SOPA, read Four reasons why the Web hates the U.S. anti-piracy acts by tech reporter Omar El Akkad, and an earlier discussion hosted by the Globe and Mail here.

Small business sales in the U.S. on the rise

For the second year in a row, small business sales were up slightly, according to a report by BizBuySell.com, an online marketplace for business acquisitions.

In 2011, 6,703 small businesses across the United States were reported as sold to BizBuySell.com, an increase of 3.3 per cent over the 2010 total of 6,486. This upward trend follows a similar 3-per-cent jump from 2009 to 2010.

The slight rise in transactions was accompanied by an equivalent 3.3-per-cent increase in the median selling price, from $150,000 in 2010 to $155,000 in 2011. Modest improvements in lending conditions south of the border could be a factor in helping to boost transactions, according to an expert interviewed by The Wall Street Journal, but many sellers continue to have to help finance deals for buyers unable to secure financing.

Revolutionary running shoe hits a brick wall

Find out why these cutting-edge, airport-inspired running shoes invented by Lenn Hann never saw the light of day in this feature story from Bloomberg.

EVENTS AND KEY DATES

Don't miss Canada's largest event dedicated to the office

Those involved in operating an office can get a competitive edge with one-stop access to everything they need to work more efficiently and sustain their company for the long term. The office* event takes place April 23 to April 24 at the Metro Toronto convention centre. Keynote speakers include Ross Shafer and Alene Dickinson.

How to market on Facebook

Learn how your small business can unlock the power of Facebook by building and engaging your fans. The free webinar takes place on Jan. 24, and Jan. 25. Register here.

EDITOR'S PICKS FROM REPORT ON SMALL BUSINESS

Collaborating with a far-flung team

Startup InsureEye needs a more effective way to keep colleagues in Canada, Germany, Russia and Australia virtually connected.

FROM THE ROSB ARCHIVES

A primer on identity theft

Challenges, examples and recommendations for small businesses.

Got a tip on news, events or other timely information related to the small-business community? E-mail us at yourbusiness@globeandmail.com

Join The Globe’s Small Business LinkedIn group to network with other entrepreneurs and to discuss topical issues: http://linkd.in/jWWdzT

Our free weekly newsletter is now available. Every Friday a team of editors selects the top picks from our blog posts, features, multimedia and columnists, and delivers them to your inbox. If you have registered for The Globe's website, you can sign up here. Click on the Small Business Briefing checkbox and hit 'save changes.' If you need to register for the site, click here.

 

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