California Considers Regulating Internet Political Speech

August 5, 2010 -

Political tweets and Facebook status updates should be held to the same standards as paid advertising that voters see on television, radio or in Californian's mailboxes, says California's campaign watchdog agency, The Fair Political Practices Commission, in a report being released Monday. The Fair Political Practices Commission is considering how to regulate "new forms of political activity" on Facebook or in a text message.

"It's become necessary as politicians in California and elsewhere announce their candidacies and major campaign policies through Twitter, YouTube and a host of social networking sites," said FPPC Chairman Dan Schnur. He also added that California's 36-year-old Political Reform Act needs a modern-day re-write to keep up with the times.

"Our goal here is to meet the new challenges of 21st Century technology," Schnur said. "There's no way that the authors of the act could have anticipated that these of types of communicating a campaign message would ever exist."

The report reportedly outlines possible hurdles to regulating such online content, like how one would include full disclosure of what group or individual is behind a political message. The changes the commission makes to state law would have to give regulators the flexibility to respond to swiftly evolving technologies, the report says.

The commission will tackle the contents of the report at its Aug. 12 meeting. Even if the five-member commission orders its staff to propose new regulations or legal changes to address new types of political messages, it will probably be months before they take effect.

The report does draw the line when it comes to the right of regular citezens to tweet or use Facebook to talk about politics or politicians:

"People tweeting about someone is typically not something you would regulate," said Barbara O'Connor, professor emeritus of communications and the former director of the Institute for the Study of Politics and Media at California State University, Sacramento. "When it becomes an ad, it's a different story. When it becomes an ad it really is a replacement for a 30-second spot for a new generation."

Like California's current regulations, federal campaign watchdogs really only regulate paid political advertising, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Source: SFGate


Comments

Re: California Considers Regulating Internet Political ...

It is there something that California don´t want to ban? Seriously. Looks more and more like Texas.

------------------------------------------------------------ My DeviantArt Page (aka DeviantCensorship): http://www.darkknightstrikes.deviantart.com

Re: California Considers Regulating Internet Political ...

Really? Texas bans things? News to me, and I've been living here for about 15 years.

Re: California Considers Regulating Internet Political ...

You just haven't heard about it because they removed any references to it from your history book.

Re: California Considers Regulating Internet Political ...

It's not about banning free speech.  Try reading it again.

Re: California Considers Regulating Internet Political ...

I read twice and I still don´t like it. I think it is something that can be abused.

------------------------------------------------------------ My DeviantArt Page (aka DeviantCensorship): http://www.darkknightstrikes.deviantart.com

Re: California Considers Regulating Internet Political ...

Fortunately, there is no way at all for anyone to abuse unregulated paid political advertising.

Re: California Considers Regulating PAID Internet PoliticalSpeec

Bit misleading, between the headline and the image.  Looks like all they're talking about is applying disclosure rules to PAID political speech on the Internet -- which is a relevant conversation, given the very next post where Pete Gallagher talks about lobbyist influence in politics.

Re: California Considers Regulating PAID Internet ...

True.  I started reading the article under the assumption that it had to do with banning political speech, which is not the case.  It actually is a real issue to consider in the new information age, one that probably doesn't have an easy answer.

Re: California Considers Regulating PAID Internet ...

Right.  As the article notes, you can't exactly slap a disclaimer on a tweet.

 
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IanCBroke my EA boycott to pick up Plants vs Zombies Garden Warfare. Loving it. Still hate EA though. But i like Popcap. Gah.08/30/2014 - 6:01am
MaskedPixelantehttp://m.tickld.com/x/something-you-never-realized-about-guardians-of-the-galaxy Right in the feels.08/29/2014 - 6:56pm
AvalongodAgain I think we're conflating the issue of whether Sarkeesian's claims are beyond critique (no they're not) and whether its ever appropriate to use sexist language, let alone physical threats on a woman to intimidate her (no it isn't)08/29/2014 - 5:04pm
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ZippyDSMleeI do not hate them jsut think its mostly hyperlobe.08/29/2014 - 3:40pm
Andrew EisenSleaker - I'd say that's likely. From my experience, most who have a problem with Sarkeesian's videos either want to hate them in the first place (for whatever reason) or honestly misunderstand what they're about and what they're saying.08/29/2014 - 3:16pm
james_fudgeWe appreciate your support :)08/29/2014 - 2:55pm
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TechnogeekI just want to say that while I've disagreed with the staff of this site on several occasions, it's still good to see that they're not automatically dismissing Anita's videos as a "misandrist scam" or whatever the preferred dismissive term is these days.08/29/2014 - 2:49pm
E. Zachary KnightZippy, So you can't find even one?08/29/2014 - 1:04pm
ZippyDSMleeAndrew Eisen:Right because shes prefect and never exaggerates... *rolls eyes*08/29/2014 - 12:53pm
SleakerAnd honestly, nearly all of the games she references, or images she depicts I've always cringed at and wondered why they were included in games to begin with, from pinups through explicit sexual depictions or direct abuse. I think it's cheap storytelling.08/29/2014 - 12:35pm
Sleaker@AE - aren't most people fundamentally misunderstanding her at this point? haha.. On a related note I think a lot of the backlash is coming from males that think she is telling them their 'Generic Male Fantasy' is bad and wrong.08/29/2014 - 12:33pm
Andrew EisenAnd no, I don't think the female community would be upset over the performance of a case study in and of itself. Possibly the mostivations behind such a study, the methodology or conclusions but not the mere idea of a case study.08/29/2014 - 12:29pm
Andrew EisenAmusingly, these videos aren't saying you can't/shouldn't use tropes or that sexual representations are inherently problematic so those are very silly things to have a problem with and indicate a fundamental misunderstanding of the series.08/29/2014 - 12:29pm
SleakerDo you think the female community would get extremely angry over a male doing a case study on the negative impact of sex-novels and their unrealistic depiction of males and how widespread they are in american culture?08/29/2014 - 12:25pm
SleakerThe other thing that people might find problematic is that they see no problem with sexual representations of females (or males) in games. And realistically, why is there anything wrong with sexual representations in fiction?08/29/2014 - 12:24pm
 

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