2012 Election | Dan Savage | Google | Republican Party | Rick Santorum

Rick Santorum Dogged by Google Problem and It's His Fault: Expert


Rick Santorum must take the lion's share of the blame for the fact that Dan Savage's 2003 fecal matter prank, a response to Santorum's statements comparing gay sex to "man-on-dog" sex, still sits  near the top of Google's search results for his last name, a Search Engine expert tells the NYT:

SantorumDanny Sullivan, the editor of SearchEngineLand, said the blame for the results rests largely with the Web strategy of Mr. Santorum’s campaign. It is the campaign’s responsibility to make its Web site more relevant than the prank term — after all, he says, the prank is relevant to voters who disagree with Mr. Santorum’s views on gay rights.

“He hasn’t maintained any type of official ‘residence,’ if you will, for himself online,” Mr. Sullivan wrote in an e-mail. “So he can’t build up links to the right place, which in turn would help him rise, and here he is doing it again. He’s effectively redirected all the ‘calls’ to his official number and pointed them to some call center, in Internet terms.”

Today on FOX News, anchor Shepard Smith made reference to Santorum's 2003 statement, saying "I don’t think all social conservatives" share Santorum's position on 'man-on-dog sex' and homosexuality.

In related news, a video blogger noted that Mitt Romney campaign ads were appearing at the top of the Santorum prank page.

Watch both clips, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. It's your responsibility to make your website more "relevant" than that of someone trying to smear your name? Let anyone redefine "Sullivan" to mean something vulgar and we'll see if he sings the same tune. What some people won't say to defend the ill-advised stunts of the Cultural Left. Then again, nothing stops Rick Santorum from turning the tables on Dan Savage and redefining HIS name to mean "uncivilized and brutish"........oh, wait.

    Posted by: Mary | Jan 4, 2012 9:00:29 PM

  2. Well, I would like to define 'Mary' as 'troll'.

    Posted by: Gregoire | Jan 4, 2012 9:25:20 PM

  3. Oh Mary please, why don't you spare us the bogus righteous indignation and just go blow the santorum out your ass.

    Posted by: gaylib | Jan 4, 2012 9:27:06 PM

  4. It's the Marketplace of Ideas in action, Mary. Frothy mix wouldn't float to the top if it wasn't winning the most hearts and minds. Mary, you seem to think that in a free market it's your competitor's job to let you win.

    Posted by: JJ | Jan 4, 2012 9:51:42 PM

  5. JJ, I never said that Senator Santorum or his views should go unopposed. My objection is to Dan Savage's tactics - something that doesn't help the gay community and actually puts its well-being in danger. If the "spreadingsantorum"website gets a lot of hits that doesn't mean that average voters are looking at it, or that they would find it funny if they were. Savage is a gifted writer and an interesting person, but I don't think it occurs to him that what he did is going to be viewed as horrendous by most people. If gays of the future experience a real backlash it will be partly due to stunts liket his, which give the gay community a bad name ( a name it doesn't deserve, by the way. I'm aware that most LGBT people don't do things like this.)

    Also, Dan Savage and his husband adopted a child. Is this the kind of behavior he wants his son to emulate? And I was just starting to warm to the idea of gay couples adopting - something I thought I could never approve of.

    Someone ought to tell Savage that there is a difference between doing good and feeling good about what one is doing.

    I can tell you from personal experience that the people who helped make me more sympathetic to gays and gay rights in general took the exact opposite of the Dan Savage approach.

    Posted by: Mary | Jan 4, 2012 10:20:50 PM

  6. @Mary, Santorum compared the sex lives of gay people to having sex with dogs. Savage is a widely read columnist who rightly took affront to it, and ran a contest to redefine Santorum's name.

    Try to imagine being called an alcoholic prostitute who has sex with animals and is mentally ill. Every day, everywhere, by all sorts of people. It gets old.

    I appreciate many types of advocacy and activism, but Santorum is an idiot. The fact that he couldn't do a better job of covering up one of his most hateful comments and the response to that comment? I think that speaks volumes about him.

    It would be nice if everyone treated everyone with respect and dignity. Santorum does that only to people who are like him or give him money. Someone who truly believes the Christian values they espouse would never insult an entire group of humanity like Santorum has repeatedly done. Having it be said that gays are comparable to people who have sex with dogs is one of the worst things I've ever heard, and he's never apologized. The man is a hateful moron. Save your empathy for someone else.

    Posted by: Paul R | Jan 4, 2012 10:35:06 PM

  7. Why are any of you even giving "Mary" the time of day? You people are gluttons for punishment. You try to be as big a victim as Santorum and then you deny it just as religiously. Get over yourselves and stop feeding the trolls.

    Posted by: Marc C | Jan 4, 2012 10:43:34 PM

  8. Mary, don't confuse respecting gay people with respecting gay people who know their place.

    Just because you have a strong opinion doesn't mean you speak for "most people."

    Learn the difference between doing good, and telling gay people to shut up for their own good.

    And I wouldn't give much credit to those people who helped you be more sympathetic to gays. It obviously didn't take.

    Posted by: JJ | Jan 4, 2012 11:00:40 PM

  9. Looks to me like the troll gets slammed pretty good. And it's good exercise, troll slamming, that is.

    Santorum only got 15% of Iowa's votes because he wasn't Romney. That's not much of an endorsement.

    Santorum will be gone soon, but his name will live on.

    Posted by: Going down in history | Jan 4, 2012 11:01:19 PM

  10. Check out Shep Smith talking about (and defending) "gay love" on Fox News! That's probably as far out of the closet as he'll ever get on air. Congrats, buddy!

    Posted by: Vann | Jan 5, 2012 12:23:50 AM

  11. @Going Down In History... Um, Santorum got 25%, about the same as Romney.

    Posted by: RJ | Jan 5, 2012 12:47:31 AM

  12. Someone should tell Savage that proper prep and good hygene will help him avoid the frothy mix he apparently has trouble with. I think his disgusting definition of "santorum" gives people an erroneous view of good clean healthy anal sex. The only thing it does to Rick Santorum is make him a more sympathetic figure. And thats unfortunate.

    Posted by: jack | Jan 5, 2012 1:10:44 AM

  13. Don't believe I'd classify Mary as a troll. I often don't agree with her, but I have appreciated what I have perceived on her part as an earnestness not only about what she believes but a willingness to at least listen.

    JACK - nothing could make a thinking person perceive Frothy as a sympathetic figure. He is defined by ideology, which makes him identifiable (good for his followers) and dangerous (bad for anyone who does not fit his narrow definitions of what a person "should" be).

    Posted by: TJ | Jan 5, 2012 2:30:34 AM

  14. Who are these fuckers who refer to each other as Mary? Most real gay men don't respond to Mary. Just a few old tired queens. I am a gay man who likes men (not queens) These tired old queens should come into the 21st century and stop being girlie men.

    Posted by: jack | Jan 5, 2012 4:01:07 AM

  15. Jack and Mary have good sense about this. The frothy mix definition is repulsively counterproductive, far more about Savage and his sleezy cheezy apologists than anything else. I'm sick of seeing any reference to it or the "splat" picture that keeps appearing on this website and elsewhere. That so many gay men are in favor of this reference underscores how out of touch they are,,,and shut up about Santorum, it's far more easily read as about us than him.

    Posted by: uffda | Jan 5, 2012 4:10:20 AM

  16. I know some people believe in "turn the other cheek" but I've always found it more satisfying and more effective to "slap back" and twice as hard. Rick Santorum slapped the entire gay community and Dan Savage stepped up and slapped him back so hard his head is still spinning.

    I haven't heard RS say anything as vulgar as his original comment since then, so it was effective too.

    Posted by: smack down | Jan 5, 2012 7:10:58 AM

  17. I've always wondered why heteros don't like anal sex (except for the 80% who do). Jack has explained that it's all because of the clean-up afterward. That also explains why people don't like food (washing the dishes), don't wear clothes (laundry), and refuse to drive (car might get dirty). Thanks for the enlightening glimpse into your mind, Jack.

    Posted by: Anastasia Beaverhausen | Jan 5, 2012 8:01:26 AM

  18. I understand the criticism of Savage, whom I admire, and I approve of intelligent challenges to Santorum's type of bigotry. And Savage has written several smart, witty books, not to mention columns, and on his feet is quick, logical, and effective. But he can be sophomoric and immature, too, and undercut his cause.

    One thing I really never have understood: How does the creation of a disgusting image of a gay male sex act (albeit one performed horribly wrong) promote the idea that homosexuality is just like heterosexuality and innately beautiful? Couldn't "Santorum" have been, you know, smegma or a yeast infection or something?

    Posted by: Morning Tundra | Jan 5, 2012 8:19:52 AM

  19. AB....thats funny....alot of str8 guys I know - often Bargain with thier wives and GF's.....to BOINK them in the Hiney,and its all over str8 porn too....so, the heteros playing the hollier then thou crap need to STFU....

    Posted by: Gay American | Jan 5, 2012 8:45:52 AM

  20. Savage is a hero. And, as Smackdown said, very effective. May he continue his good work.

    Posted by: Jay | Jan 5, 2012 9:01:14 AM

  21. I just enjoyed the irony of Santorum coming in #2. In Iowa, I mean. ;)

    Posted by: Dback | Jan 5, 2012 9:39:44 AM

  22. @MorningTundra: Anal sex is no less likely to result in a mess of santorum when it is male-on-female than male-on-male, so the concept shouldn't evoke any image related to male-male sex specifically.

    Posted by: Gregv | Jan 5, 2012 10:44:21 AM

  23. Funny. All of the straight people to whom I have suggested googling Santorum have had a good laugh. Maybe I just know straight people who not only see Santorum for the joke he is, but have a sense of humor as well.

    Posted by: TJ | Jan 5, 2012 11:05:47 AM

  24. JACK, I'd like you to meet RICK and JASON. You have much in common. I suggest you get together to watch each other's chest hair grow.

    Posted by: TJ | Jan 5, 2012 11:09:25 AM

  25. Well, with RS, it comes out of his mouth.

    Posted by: anon | Jan 5, 2012 1:20:24 PM

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