This is what national, presidential-election-year political campaigns do now: They make little prank websites to undermine their opponents. It’s the tech-savvy, 21st Century equivalent of a TV attack ad.
This particular example, carried out by the Democratic National Committe (DNC), punks Romney’s tax plan. Google “Romney Tax Plan” and the first result takes you to RomneyTaxPlan.com – what looks like an official Mitt Romney site. But if you try to click the home page’s Get The Details button, the rectangular red button literally runs away from you. That’s the joke, you can’t ever “Get the Details” on Mitt Romney’s tax plan.
Manipulating key terms in Google search to display a message isn’t new by any means – George Bush and the words “miserable failure” is one of the earliest, most successful examples of “Google bombing.” And Rick Santorum’s “Google troubles” were considerably worse – as they involved a gross sex act.
This prank carried out by the DNC employs a similar reliance on being the first hit on Google; Romney was not shrewd enough to buy the domain “romneytaxplan.com,” so the DNC did, and had a little fun with it.
At the very bottom, someone at the DNC wrote, “Mitt Romney has ducked and side-stepped every attempt to get the details of his plan, which sticks the middle class with the bill for $5 trillion in tax cuts favoring millionaires and billionaires,” with a link to a post titled “Romney’s tax plan adds up to a middle class tax hike.”
The advantage of this approach? Instead of catching heat for “going negative” in an attack ad, this cute and tech-savvy approach is gathering heaps of positive press.You can’t miss it when you search for “Romney Tax Plan.”