A new bill proposed by a Republican state senator in Florida would require bloggers to register with the state if they write about Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) and other members of the government.
NBC's News Channel 8 wrote that Sen. Jason Brodeur's (R-Lake Mary) bill would impose fines on anyone who refuses to register to a maximum of $2,500. There would be an additional $25 each day the fee isn't paid.
Senate Bill 1316: Information Dissemination would mandate that writers register with the Florida Office of Legislative Services or the Commission on Ethics. It would apply to anyone who writes “an article, a story, or a series of stories,” about “the Governor, the Lieutenant Governor, a Cabinet officer, or any member of the Legislature,” and is paid for doing so. They would have to register within a five-day period by the publication of the article or stories.
If the blogger writes about any of those lawmakers again, the writer would be required to submit a monthly report on the 10th of every month with the state office. If no content is published that month, they wouldn't have to submit a report.
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The report also explained that it would apply to “concern an elected member of the legislature” or “an officer of the executive branch." The report would require the person to reveal how much money they're earning for writing the post.
"If compensation is paid for a series of posts or for a specific amount of time, the blogger would be required to disclose the total amount to be received, upon publication of the first post in said series or timeframe," said NBC.
The law would also demand bloggers file additional paperwork if they fail to file the initial paperwork. It's a similar law to the lobbying restrictions in Florida. It mandates a 30-day timeline for the fines and an additional $25 fine per day the fine isn't paid.
The same rule would not apply to newspapers or similar publications.