Protesters raise more than $200,000 to buy Congress’s browsing histories

After Congress voted Tuesday to dismantle landmark privacy protections for Internet users, pockets of the Web erupted in a mixture of fury and fear.

Among other changes, this legislation would make it easier, and legal, for Internet service providers (ISPs) to both gather and sell personal information including Web browsing history. In other words, AT&T could, in theory, sell to the highest bidder a list of the websites you’ve visited and the frequency with which you visited them.

Many Internet users aren’t keen on the idea of companies selling their browsing data, so several independently came up with the same plan: They began crowdfunding campaigns to purchase the Web histories of the members who voted to wipe away those protections.