Politics online and the citizen bloggers
A blogger can freely support a politician or a cause, while journalists (other than columnists) are cautioned never to take sides.
But is there a conflict of interest for bloggers who receive financial support from the people they write about? What are the rules in this medium?
The Center for Democracy and Technology has produced The Net Democracy Guide to explain what’s allowed (and what’s not) to online activists, organizers and just plain pundits.
The new campaign finance rules for the Internet leave the vast majority of uncompensated citizen-initiated election activities on the Internet free from any regulation. With few exceptions, you may develop websites, blog, e-mail campaign material, raise money, and collaborate with your friends on election related activities online without worrying about running afoul of the rules. Campaign finance obligations kick in only in very limited circumstances — primarily where payments are made to place advertisements and other communications on third party blogs and websites.
The guide also includes an excellent list of resources that will be useful to journalists and journalism students as well as the political movers and shakers of the wired world.
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