Remember how ten years ago people argued about bloggers being new journalists and blogs becoming “Media 2.0″. How time goes by…
So, Russian Parliament just decided that bloggers are in fact mass media. And if you have more than 3 thousands visitors (or friends/followers) per day you have to be registered as a media. Well, not as a “real media”, you don’t need to have a company and everything. But you have to show your name and contact address, verify your sources and abide all laws written for traditional media.
Technically that makes each Russian blogger equal to a newspaper and every Russian Youtube personality to a TV station.
UPDATE: I see this post got some coverage on Interwebs, so I’ll clarify it a bit.
If you’re a blogger and you have 3K daily visitors during one month you have to add required information to your blog so you can be added by government agency to its list of bloggers. You can later opt out if your popularity drops and you’ll have less than 3K viewers per day for three months straight. But when you hit that magic number, you will be registered again.
If you fail to comply your blog will be blocked in Russia. Russia has quite an effective system for Internet filtering with deep packet inspection hardware installed at most major providers. So, when Russia blocks you, it blocks you for good majority of its population.
No word on international Russian-speaking bloggers. I’m one of those, I have around half a million visitors per month to my personal blog, so I’m kinda worried. Worst case scenario they’ll block people like me as “foreign agents”.