Saturday, March 26, 2005

Bloggers and Politics: Online politicking rules under debate

The Federal Election Commission (FEC) on Thursday proposed new ways of apply campaign finance rules to political activity on the internet, asking for public input on limited regulations for the medium.

The FEC, which is beginning to consider restrictions on political advertising, blogs, and other online activities. A pending document may describe the legal issues it plans to take on over the next few months. The agency plans to hold a public hearing on the issue and then vote on the final regulations later this year.

Members of congress concerned about possible new regulations have sent letters to the FEC urging that a press exemption apply to the net. Senator Harry Reid, D-Nev., has also introduced legislation that would exempt internet politicking from most of campaign finance regulations.

Netizens have likewise been actively trying to persuade the FEC on the issue. In preparation for the FEC's expected vote, a group of bloggers and political activists have organized a petition to the commission through the website Online Coalition . The petition has received more than 3,200 electronic signatures as of Friday morning.

  • NY Times: Election Commission Urges Finance Rules For Online Politics

  • Washington Post: FEC Signals Light Hand On Internet Campaigning

  • Bloggers Have Rights Too

  • ZDNet: Bloggers Narrowly Dodge Federal Crackdown

  • Rules Could Be Blocked

  • FEC Draft Rules

  • Of course I've signed the petition. You should too.

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