In every measure, Obama clobbers Clinton online

Web traffic-monitoring firm Compete runs down the ways Obama trumped Clinton on the Internet in March.

By Farhad Manjoo

Published April 11, 2008 7:43PM (EDT)

We've long known that Barack Obama is the Web's favorite presidential candidate -- now that Ron Paul is gone, the race isn't even close. But in a blog post today the Web-analysis firm Compete put out the full measure of Obama's dominance over rival Hillary Clinton.

Look at the table above: In every category, Obama clobbers Clinton.

The first row, FaceTime, is Compete's composite measurement of online interactions with a candidate -- how much time people spend on the candidate's MySpace and Facebook profiles, YouTube videos, Flickr photos, and MeetUp pages. The measurement reflects a "share" of Democrats online -- i.e., in March, Obama was the focus of four-fifths of the time that Democrats spent looking at a candidate online.

As a result of his popular speech on race relations, Obama was particularly strong on YouTube. In March, people spent more than half-a-million hours -- hours! -- on his channel. That's nearly 60 years of YouTube time! (Clinton's 59,100 YouTube hours comes to less than 6 years.)

Of course, none of this matters: The superdelegates, not the Internet, will decide the Democratic nominee. But superdelegates must be paying attention to Web traffic data, right?

Farhad Manjoo

Farhad Manjoo is a Salon staff writer and the author of True Enough: Learning to Live in a Post-Fact Society.

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