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Florida Bill Would Make Bloggers Register With The State

Bloggers who write about government officials would also have to submit monthly reports to a state agency.

A GOP state senator proposed a bill that would mandate bloggers writing about the state cabinet, individual members of the state’s legislature, the lieutenant governor, and Governor Ron DeSantis to register with the Florida Office of Legislative Services or the Commission on Ethics.

The bill would only apply to bloggers who receive or are expecting to receive payment from their posts about these members of the Florida state government. The potential requirement would not apply to newspapers, their websites, and other news sites.

GOP State Senator Jason Brodeur introduced the proposal, which states:

“If a blogger posts to a blog about an elected state officer and receives, or will receive, compensation for that post, the blogger must register with the appropriate office… within 5 days after the first 164 by the blogger which mentions an elected state officer.”

The bill defines a blog as “a website or webpage that hosts any blogger and is frequently updated with opinion, commentary, or business content.” A post is defined as “an individual webpage on a blog which contains an article, a story, or a series of stories.”

In addition, if bloggers continue to write about these members of the government, they would then have to submit reports monthly to the relevant state agency. Such reports would have to include the payment amount, the date of the post, and the publisher of the post. If a blogger fails to comply, they would be fined.

The controversial bill will likely face legal challenges from those asserting that it violates the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

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The Daily Chela is a new digital media outlet that has by cited by The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, NBC News, Yahoo News, Vox, The Washington Post, Forbes, Fox Sports, former presidential candidate Julián Castro, and the National Association Of Hispanic Journalists.

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