Presidential Candidates Web Search Results Opening To The Public

Ron Paul shines among Republicans, but trails Obama, Clinton online, according to a new survey by Hitwise.
Ron Paul is the most popular Republican presidential candidate on the Internet, according to figures from a new Election 2008 Data Center survey.

Still, he trails behind Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton for presidential candidates' Web site visits, according to online metrics firm Hitwise.

Hitwise announced Tuesday that it has created a new tool for measuring the most popular political search terms and the most searched, visited and sought candidates online. Unlike most figures from Hitwise, this data sampling is open to the public.

"As the Internet continues to evolve as a major communications channel for candidates and a platform for the public to research issues, we are delighted to share insights on how American Internet users react to political campaigns and policies online as the election unfolds," Tessa Court, chief marketing officer of Hitwise, said in a prepared statement.

The data will be updated every Tuesday and available through RSS feeds. It covers the top candidates' Web sites, as well as breakdowns according to party affiliation. It also shows which candidate search terms are most popular and which political Web sites draw the most visitors. Based on the results, Hitwise said it will name "Fast Moving National Political Web sites" and the "Candidate of the Month."

As Hitwise announced the new features, Paul a Republican Congressman from Texas, held the lead for the largest market share of visits to Republican Web sites. Paul's site, accounted for 44.16% of the market share for Republican visits during the week that ended August 4.

Mitt Romney's site,, ranks second among Republicans, but well behind, with 16.13% of the market share for Republican Web site visits during that week, according to Hitwise. Rudy Giuliani ranked third, holding 11.78% percent of the market share among Republicans for

Barack Obama ( held a lead over Hillary Clinton ( among Democrats, with 40.64% of the market share among Democrats, compared to Clinton's 24.20%.

John Edwards held third place among Democrats with his site,, accounting for 18.36% of the market share of visits among Democratic candidates.

Film maker Michael Moore ranked top among political search terms, followed by Daily Kos.

The data is based on Hitwise' examination of Internet use and search behavior of more than 10 million users and 1 million Web sites that fit within more than 160 industry categories.

Tech President, backed by the Personal Democracy Forum, is also monitoring campaign activities online and hopes to name a candidate who understands, uses and promotes technology.

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