How Did Obama Hijack HillaryClinton.Com?

05/25/2011 12:30 pm ET
  • Blake Fleetwood Former reporter for the New York Times and Daily News; taught Political Science at NYU

I typed in on AOL Search -- powered by Google -- and up pops Obama's web site ( See below) inviting me to;

"Help elect Barack Obama President of the United States"

It must be quite a surprise to people who are trying to support Hillary and give her money.

They don't want to help Obama, they want Hillary.

How could this happen? Simple.

Obama has smarter tech guys and more money. With sponsored links, the more you bid on key words or phrases, the higher they will pop up on search engines. Obama has more money to bid higher for than Hillary has. Or maybe some good supporters in Google or AOL.

This is not unusual in the dog-eat-dog world of search wars. If you type in British Airways, the first hit that often comes up is First Class Flyer, a nice travel newsletter, but not British Airways. When I type in United Airlines, I get Expedia, Orbitz and Cheapoair, before I got to the United site. Every search is difference. The same results don't come up all the time, but Obama pops up first on AOL more than not. It doesn't work in Google.

But wait wait!

Aren't politicians suppose to more ethical than crass commercial pandering. Isn't Obama's campaign for hope and honesty.... and not deceiving or ripping off other people?

How could ripping off --- outbidding her for her own name and redirecting them to --- be anything less than completely straightforward?

What if somebody typed in and came up instead.

Reminds me of the time when Dick Tuck --- the Democratic prankster --- dressed up as a railroad engineer in 1972 and waved Richard Nixon's train on in the middle of speech Nixon was delivering off the back. These tricks used to happen all the time.

But those days are over aren't they?

Write to: