Astroturf for (or against?) Obama

By | March 24, 2011

An interesting comment showed up a few hours ago on an earlier blog posting of mine about Barack Obama: “Just wanted to say that I am eployed at a large Pharmaceutical company in Clayton NC and I support Barack Obama with all my heart. I would love for all my friends and colleagues to re-elect Obama in 2012!! I LOVE YOU OBAMA.”

The commenter gave the name “Diane Pearce Votes for Obama Again” and linked to I thought it was slightly weird, but not weird enough to merit further investigation.

Then, three hours later, another comment came in on a different blog posting, this time from “Diane Pearce Loves Barack Obama”: “All I know is that I work at a large Pharmaceutical corporation in Clayton NC and I endroce Barack Obama with all my being. I would love for all my friends and colleagues to re-elect Obama in 2012!! I LOVE YOU OBAMA.”

That exceeded my weirdness threshold, so I looked into it a bit further.

The two comments gave two different email addresses, and, both of which appear to be based on people’s names and neither of which is related to the full name given by the commenter.

One of the comments was posted from an IP address in the United Arab Emirates. The other was posted from Indonesia.

I Googled for pages matching “Diane Pearce” and Obama, and there were 264 matches, many of which were similar comments. I did the same Google search a half hour later, and the count was up to 270.

Someone is clearly astroturfing here. The motives for this, and whether the people doing it are in reality trying to help or hurt Obama, are left as an exercise to the reader.

Diane Pearce Votes for Obama Again
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2 thoughts on “Astroturf for (or against?) Obama

  1. Ross

    Happened to me too! I don’t think it is a rouge idiot. I think it’s OfA’s digital wing getting ramped up for 2012. No doubt, to me anyway, that this is astroturf.

    1. jik Post author

      Obama’s online organizing machine is much better than to do something this sloppy, and they don’t need to since they’ve got millions of loyal online minions who post behind for them. It’s therefore implausible that they would be behind his. The reference to big pharma in all the comments is more proof of this… Nobody likes big pharma nowadays and one of the attacks against Obamacare is that he supposedly sold out to them, so it’s clearly an effort to make him look bad.


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