Well, when we suggested that Sophie start a blog to help counter some of the diatribes by critics in her constituency, we were only partly joking. Sure, we were jealous that our friends in District Six have a blogging supe, and we don't. But really, we tend to like Supervisor Maxwell, being the child of activists ourselves. But her public perception is about to take a hit again, this time on an international level, and as usual, she doesn't entirely deserve it.
First, Michael Bassik over at Personal Democracy Forum posted on a new city ordinance [PDF] which, according to Chad Jacobs over at the City Attorney's office would require blogs with over 500 readers (uh, yeah, good luck establishing what site metric you'll use for that -- we use sessions, by the way) and that mention local candidates for office to register with the city's Ethics Commission and report all blog-related costs over $1,000. Now Slashdot has picked it up, angering blog nerds worldwide. In an update to his original post, Edward Champion says that Greg Assay, an aide to Supervisor Maxwell, has assured him that blogs will be considered news outlets and exempt -- which is awesome, because now we can wave that around when we apply for our press pass!
We agree with Chris Nolan, who lays out the history behind the ordinance in a great post, when she points out that she's "[O]n record as favoring full disclosure of payments made to anyone during a campaign." And we're also going to agree with her assesment that this new ordinance is poorly conceived and written, not evil. We certainly do our best to disclose our personal interest in a story, but rest assured that we're not going to be taking any money in exchange for positive coverage on SFist. Though if you do have a pro or anti Chris Daly screed to promote, you can always buy an ad. In the meantime, you can drop by City Hall and see what the Rules Committee (Alioto-Pier, Mirkarimi and Maxwell) has to say tomorrow. We're going to doubt that this passes on first reading.