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Was That Political Ad Over the Top? New Survey Promises to Answer Straight from Voters' Mouths

BY Miranda Neubauer | Tuesday, July 24 2012

Similar to the way many news sites now ask visitors to flag stories as funny, discouraging or provocative, a new project plans to poll Internet users for their reactions to selected political ads.

Vanderbilt University and polling firm YouGov are launching a project that will ask a representative sample of 600 Americans to give their reactions to each of a number of controversial and "game-changing" ads, selected by the polling team and with the help of Republican consultant Fred Davis. Their responses will be collected through online surveys, and the results will be posted on the web.

The project could help researchers develop a more nuanced view of the effectiveness of ads, said Ken Goldstein, president of Kantar Media. The big mistake in looking at political advertising often is, he said, that "we were just counting bombs." This project "gives you the potential to make that more nuanced -- this particular ad aired this many times but is rated in these different ways."

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Obama Ad Targets Romney on Boston Globe Homepage

BY Miranda Neubauer | Thursday, May 31 2012

Boston.com screenshot (@mcgregormt via @kathrynepeters)

As various campaign officials pointed out on Twitter, the Obama campaign has bought a large ad criticizing Mitt Romney on the front of one of the Boston Globe's homepages, Boston.com. Apparently limited to ... Read More

Democrats Create "Unlikeable" Romney Facebook Timeline for Video

BY Miranda Neubauer | Wednesday, May 30 2012

The Democratic National Committee has released a video that constructs its own version of Mitt Romney's Facebook timeline. Using the motto "Little to Like," it's a "celebration" of Romney officially winning enough delegates for his nomination. Read More

Is the Internet Running Out of Political Ad Space?

BY Nick Judd | Tuesday, May 29 2012

Highly targeted ads may be in shorter supply than one might think. Photo: Shutterstock

Exclusively for Personal Democracy Plus subscribers: Online politics consultants say that as a growing number of campaigns are buying television ads in advance, looking to get ahead of what is expected to be fierce competition for ad inventory closer to the general elections, something similar is happening online.

That consultants are doing the same with some types of online ads may seem counterintuitive at first, given that online advertising inventory is plentiful. But it seems that the online advertising inventory campaigns want most — targeted preroll ads on YouTube, geotargeted display advertising on news sites and other major traffic hubs, and even ads placed against some Google search terms — is in short enough supply to drive at least some advance purchases as well. This is a fact of life that online politics consultants say the fastest-moving organizations are just now learning, driven from experience gained the hard way during the primary campaign in this election cycle.

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Precision Network Targets Online Ads Against National Democratic Voter File

BY Nick Judd | Monday, May 21 2012

For Personal Democracy Plus subscribers: Democratic online operatives are pulling the curtain up on a series of recent agreements to sell online ad targeting services to progressive causes and campaigns. Precision Network, a new political ad targeting company launched by Change.org alumnus Tim Lim, has announced a deal with NGP VAN that allows it to do more targeted online ad placement for progressive causes and campaigns. Precision takes voter file data from the National Voter File Co-op, an organization set up by state Democratic parties to keep a central, up-to-date voter file, removes personally identifiable information from the data, and matches it against a universe of about 350 million cookies placed on individual computers by a variety of ad exchanges and networks, said the company's founder, Tim Lim. Read More

With the 2012 Election Looming, NRCC Names a New Digital Director

BY Nick Judd | Friday, April 27 2012

The National Republican Congressional Committee's eCampaigns director, John Randall, has left to become director of political advertising at AOL, the NRCC has confirmed. House Budget Committee press secretary Gerrit Lansing is leaving his current gig to become digital director at the NRCC. Lansing's first day is April 30. Read More

Barack Obama's "Story of Us," Told Through a Computer Screen

BY Nick Judd | Friday, February 10 2012

To commemorate the fifth anniversary of the day Barack Obama first announced his candidacy for presidency of the United States, his campaign has released this video, which has some stylistic similarities to Google's unfailingly optimistic ad spots in the same way many videos in this election season so far have resembled action movie trailers. Read More

A Bad Rap for Rick Perry, On A Bad Rap About Rick Perry

BY Nick Judd | Monday, October 3 2011

Over at Ben Smith's blog, the eponymous writer passes along an observation from one of his readers — for the reader, YouTube serves up an anti-Perry, pro-Mitt Romney Google ad alongside Perry Gal Stefanie ... Read More

New Rules for Online Politics Could Be On the Horizon

BY Nick Judd | Friday, September 23 2011

As Facebook, Google and Twitter look to get deeper into the political advertising business, the Federal Election Commission may alter the way it regulates how campaigns use those companies' advertising services. The FEC ... Read More

Twitter Advertising Gets Political

BY Nick Judd | Wednesday, September 21 2011

Twitter will offer political advertising for candidates and campaigns, Ben Smith reports today in Politico: Twitter is not, however, offering campaign ads inserted directly in users “timelines” – the streams of ... Read More