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"Losing my faith in humanity ... one neocon at a time."

Monday, January 17, 2005

NY State GOP Grabs Good Web Addresses

posted by Jazz at 1/17/2005 08:24:00 AM

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If you want to grow up to be a big, bad, mean politician, you have to start off as a small, petty, mean politician. It seems that four years ago the state senate of New York began a program where they started purchasing easily recognizable domain names for the web sites of state senators. Being an effective way to communicate with your constituents, this sounds logical, right? The only problem is, the senate is run by a Republican majority and they only bothered getting the good names for themselves. They justified leaving out the Democrats by calling it a limited "pilot program."
It's easy enough to find Joe Bruno's official Senate Web site. As you might expect, it's http://www.senatorbruno.com.
[ed. note: Bruno is the figurative and literal "boss" of the GOP machine in the NY senate.)
But such intuition won't get you to Sen. David Paterson's page, unless you know the number of his district (http://nyssenate30.com). Even tougher is Sen. Neil Breslin's page -- it involves a string of 74 numbers, letters and symbols.

Like so much else in Albany, it's about politics. Bruno, the Senate Republican majority leader, and his GOP colleagues get Web addresses with their names. Paterson and his Democratic minority don't get that kind of easy name association.

The reason goes back to 2000, when the Senate unrolled Web sites but only for the GOP majority, saying it was a limited pilot program. Democrats suggested it was a way of getting taxpayers to help promote Republican senators in an election year.

Democrats were eventually given Web sites, too, said Bruno spokesman John McArdle. But some domain names were already taken (two Democrats are named Smith, for example, but http://www.senatorsmith.com is owned by a Washington, D.C., firm that sells names for anywhere from about $700 to more than $10,000). So, the Senate went with a different system for the minority.

I don't know about you, but I see a future for some of these boys and girls in Bugman's choir.