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Yikes, Philly is starting to pressure bloggers with ads to get a license for their “business.”

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — Philadelphia bloggers were abuzz this week about a citywide move to crack down on citizens running a business without a license — which includes any local bloggers running ads on their sites.


The weekly Philadelphia City Paper kicked off the kerfuffle with an article spotlighting several small-scale bloggers who were startled to receive letters from the city demanding that they shell out up to $300 for a license allowing them to operate a local business. One of the recipients had raked in a whopping profit of $11 over two years from his blog.

Here come the pundits:


NBC’s Philadelphia website accused the city of “taking a step closer to an eerie Orwellian state where creativity is crushed in the name of ‘the greater good.'” Right-wing blogger Michelle Malkin blasted the city for “requiring a license for Internet activists and hobbyists to exercise their free speech.”

On the other hand, the Washington Post pointed out the city was merely following the letter of the law and treating businesses equally: “Bloggers running ads next to their copy shouldn’t be exempt if the requirement also applies to people selling old junk on eBay.”

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