Thursday, August 28, 2008

Paid Google ad appears to state McCain picked Lieberman

A Google AdWords ad first spotted by BetaNews contributor Sharon Fisher, along with ads for the McCain campaign that have appeared today on BetaNews and elsewhere through Google, appear on first glance to have spoiled McCain's VP pick.

Groups of politically-minded bloggers, including the DaniWeb IT community, have been noting today a peculiar jump today in the number of online ads, appearing in BetaNews and elsewhere, showing presumptive Republican presidential nominee Sen. John McCain alongside former Democratic vice presidential candidate Sen. Joe Lieberman.

One of the members of that community is our frequent BetaNews colleague and analyst Sharon Fisher, who brought to our attention this afternoon what appeared to be a paid Google AdWords ad, linking directly to Sen. McCain's campaign Web site, along with this phrase: "Senator Lieberman Joins McCain's Team. Learn Why You Should Join!"

Was this an inadvertent leak, by way of a poorly timed Google AdWords campaign, stating that McCain had chosen Lieberman as his running mate? A representative of the McCain campaign who did not wish to be identified, told BetaNews this afternoon that he, too, was able to pull up the AdWords link on Google, and that the ad itself appeared to be a legitimate one.

Paid Google ad appears to state McCain picked Lieberman

However, he noted, it appeared to have been launched after Lieberman officially joined McCain's campaign effort last February, helping to organize a division of the campaign called Citizens for McCain. Lieberman currently serves in the US Senate as an independent, having dropped his Democratic party affiliation in his last bid for re-election to the Senate in 2006.

The AdWords ad links to the URL, When Sharon first brought the ad to our attention at 3:10 pm EDT, clicking on this link took us to the McCain campaign's home page. By 3:30, the link was not resolvable, bringing up a custom 404 page. Then at 3:50, the link was redirected to, which is indeed the home page for the Citizens for McCain effort.

Successive tries to pull up the AdWords ad on Google since 3:50 pm have failed.

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