Too damned funny.

In short (snark), the Republican Party created a “branded” link-shortener, GOP.am (Go Pam?), similar to the well known bit.ly. Immediately, people were using it to create shortened links to porn sites, sites selling sex toys and the web presence of groups like the American Communist Party.

This, in and of itself, would not be an issue. Except that GOP.am also comes with a toolbar that pools these shortened links and makes them available to others with the toolbar; in effect, branding these sites as endorsed by the Grand Oil Party. Even funnier, the tool places an animated overlay of RNC Chairman Michael Steele at the bottom of the browser, walking around and pointing as if showing off the page being displayed. And when the page is displaying the very latest in bondage fetish wear, well….

And just out of curiosity: why would the America First party be using the national root domain for Armenia as part of their branding?

Article quote and link below the fold.

The Republican party took down its innovative link-shortening tool Tuesday for several hours after pranksters had a field day using the tool to associate the GOP with bondage sites.

As part of its new media strategy, the Republican party launched a new site called GOP.am on Monday. It’s a URL shortener designed to make it easy for conservative web surfers to exchange links to web pages.

Pranksters almost immediately began using the service to link to controversial or ironically intended websites, such as the official site of the American Communist Party, a bondage website and a webpage advertising a sex toy in the likeness of Barack Obama. GOP.am apparently started blocking such links at some point Tuesday morning, and the GOP.am homepage was taken offline.

The website is back online late Tuesday morning PST, and the company that designed the site in collaboration with the Republican National Committee plans to add an automatic filtering system to help with the high volume of what its president calls “pornographic, lewd” or “hateful” URLs being added to its service.

Wired: Pranksters Make Short Work of GOP’s URL Shortener for Conservatives

Gregory Gadow

Gregory Gadow