Is the Blogsphere Influencing the SEC? thinks so, and links to a Reuters story to bloster their view. You be the judge:

Totally terrifying thought. But not beyond the range of the barely credible. We’ve written a lot about SEC regulation. And sometimes it did seem as if the SEC was listening. After we celebrated the court decision striking down regulations requiring hedge fund registration, and decried the possibility of an SEC appeal or new regulations trying to get around the decision, the SEC totally decided that it was just going to start studying hedge funds, impose some tighter investor requirements and not go all registration crazy again. Backdating? Well, after we started pointing out that a lot of the backdating “scandal” was a lot less scandalous than it seemed, the SEC’s prosecutorial zeal seemed to slacken.

So, post hoc, ergo hoc? Yeah, probably not. But according to Reuters, SEC chairman Chris Cox is reading blogs and using them to figure out what the public is thinking.

The chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, a technology cheerleader who recently posted on a corporate blog, said on Monday that he uses blogs to gauge public reaction on securities issues.

Christopher Cox, speaking at the Reuters Regulation Summit in Washington, also said the commission will be looking further at what corporate Internet posts might constitute public disclosure.

Cox has been an outspoken proponent on using technology to improve company transparency and investor education, especially pushing to make SEC filings rich with interactive data.

But he also uses technology to get an early peek at how the public will react to SEC action on issues.

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