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The Clickocracy, Virginia Edition

If Creigh Deeds wins the Democratic primary tonight, it might be partly due to the fact that he blasted away the competition.

Online -- that is.

Starting at 3 p.m EST Monday, hours before polls opened across Virginia, Deeds's campaign bought what's called a "Google blast." Or, more appropriately, a Google attack. If you live in Northern Virginia (or, like many voters, work in D.C. but live in NoVa), Deeds has been almost inescapable on highly-trafficked sites such as washingtonpost.com, the blog Talking Points Memo and Oxygen.com, which is popular among women. Capitalizing on his Post endorsement, he peppered those sites with banner ads reading "The Washington Post endorsed one Democrat -- Creigh Deeds" until polls closed.

oxygen.jpg

And, the blast aside, searches for his first name surpassed Terry (McAuliffe) and Brian (Moran) on May 29. As of last Tuesday, searches for "Deeds" were up more than 25 percent compared to McAuliffe.

Deeds, however, is not only the candidate who's leveraged the Web during his campaign. All of the Democratic contenders are on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, the social networking trifecta. McAuliffe edges Deeds and Moran on the three sites, drawing more fans on Facebook, followers on Twitter and channel views on YouTube.

In such a contested primary, and with voter turn-out expected to be low, every number counts.

-- Jose Antonio Vargas

This is one in a series of online columns on our growing "clickocracy," in which we are one nation under Google, with e-mail and video for all. Please send suggestions, comments and tips to vargasj@washpost.com.

By Christopher Dean Hopkins  |  June 9, 2009; 7:20 PM ET
Categories:  2009 Governor's Race , Creigh Deeds , Election 2009  
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