Perhaps no candidate in history has made better use of the vast resource potential of the internet than Barack Obama. Through the use of social networking, viral video, podcasting and online fund raising, Obama’s campaign has revolutionized the role of the web in American politics.
But the internet has also been a double-edged sword for the Obama camp. For every new donor he gains (1.5 million and counting) there seem to be fifty rumors about him circulating around the web; threatening to damage his campaign and his credibility. And with every “Sally 700 Club” forwarding these inflammatory emails to everyone in their address book as quickly as they come in (and we’ve all gotten dozens of them), rebutting these “smears” has become a pretty daunting task for Obama (and his supporters).
That’s why the Obama campaign has launched FightTheSmears.com. It’s an online resource where the various “smears” in circulation are logged, fact-checked and rebutted. In keeping with the social networking strength of Obama’s online presence, the site also has tools which enable users to enter the email addresses of up to ten people to send a reply about each “smear.” Better yet, you can even load the contacts from your address book (works with all major online email providers such as Yahoo, GMail, MSN, etc.)
So the next time you get the inevitable email accusing Obama of being a Muslim, refusing to say the Pledge of Allegiance, or claiming to have “secret video” of his wife using a racial slur – why not take a few moment to check the facts and send a reply?