San Fran to Regulate Blogging?

I picked this one up off The Political News Wire just a few moments ago by way of the Personal Democracy Forum.

Just when you thought the Federal Election Commission had it out for the blogosphere, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors took it up a notch and announced yesterday that it will soon vote on a city ordinance that would require local bloggers to register with the city Ethics Commission and report all blog-related costs that exceed $1,000 in the aggregate.

Blogs that mention candidates for local office that receive more than 500 hits will be forced to pay a registration fee and will be subject to website traffic audits, according to Chad Jacobs, a San Francisco City Attorney.

This push to regulate bloggers is really beginning to bother me. Clearly there are some blogs, a small minority, that could be considered media outlets due to their massive readership and political pull (Echaton, KOS, Powerline, Blogs for Bush), but the rest are mostly small individual run websites. This effort to regulate bloggers by charging registration fees and tracking hits will only drive people away. Not only is it afront to the first amendment but it also demonstrates a clear misunderstanding of what a blog is.

By the way, what do they mean by blogs that receive more than 500 hits? Is that daily or in total? If it is in total then it would effectively mean every blog out there. Fear the blogger, fear the bloggger.

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