DC Trawler

Our long national nightmare is over: Obama campaign denies buying gutsycall.com

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Yesterday at 4:36 PM, Daniel Halper at The Weekly Standard posted the following blog item (emphasis mine):

Obama’s not one to “spike the football” after a victory (or after killing Osama bin Laden), but it seems his campaign team (or some of his ardent supporters) doesn’t feel the same way. Check out www.gutsycall.com — it redirects users to Obama’s campaign website, www.barackobama.com. Could it be that his reelection campaign made this call? Or is it just a couple of his most steadfast supporters?

Earlier this week, John Brennan said Obama giving the order to kill Bin Laden was a “gutsy call.” (Yeah, he completely alienated Michael Moore.) So that’s the reference, apparently.

Now, seems to me that what Halper wrote is standard practice in blogging. You put up a quick post saying, “Hey, check this out. Don’t know what this is all about, but I guess we’ll see.” Throw it against the wall and see if it sticks. Markos Moulitsas explained the process to Howard Kurtz back in Sept. ’08, when the search for “Trig’s real mom” was just heating up:

“Our people are doing the vetting. Even if some of it is hitting dead ends, other ones are striking direct hits,” Moulitsas says. His role, he adds, “is to sit back and let the citizen journalists do their job, and I amplify the stuff that shakes out.”

How about that. News is just history on the wing, right?

Don’t tell the DNC that. Sam Stein at HuffPo reports on this and notes:

There was one hitch. The Democratic National Committee insists the website wasn’t created by its team, or the Obama campaign apparatus. A DNC official told The Huffington Post that neither entity bought the URL in question, nor do they have a clue — as of Friday morning, at least — who did.

The creator of the website, indeed, appears to have cloaked the registration details, making him or her completely anonymous. The server is located in Scottsdale, Arizona (which says little about the website itself) and was purchased from GoDaddy.com.

The misinformation (if, in fact, this isn’t a DNC site) may seem like small potatoes, far overshadowed by the news of bin Laden’s death. But the DNC took the incident seriously enough to push back forcefully on Friday, not only denying any connection to the provenance of the URL but also purchasing a URL of its own — www.weeklyNOstandards.com — to redirect to the Weekly Standard’s homepage.

I guess that’s a clever way of proving the point: Anybody can buy a URL and redirect it to another site. Heck, last year my bosses bought keitholbermann.com and redirected it to dailycaller.com. So it’s good to see that the DNC has risen to the level of a snotty Internet startup. (True fact I just made up: The DNC also considered weaklystandard.com and weeklyspamturds.com, but those seemed too childish.)

You might think this is a bit of an overreaction, since Halper was very careful to say that he didn’t know for sure who was behind the redirect and was just noting its existence. But oh no, that simply won’t do:

“There are serious issues that we should be focusing on right now including the Republican proposal to end Medicare as we know it. So the sooner we can kill off these kinds of distractions that some prefer to trade in, the better,” said DNC National Press Secretary Hari Sevugan.

And so your solution is… purchasing a joke URL maligning a magazine you don’t like.

The country’s in the very best of hands.

P.S. www.DNCcrybabies.com

PREVIOUSLY: What’s more fun than lecturing people about ‘spiking the football’ over killing Osama Bin Laden?