Fake “Miliband for Leader” website slams Gordon Brown

Last week David Miliband announced his intention to stand for the Labour leadership, and there are already websites promoting and discussing potential contenders.

However, one of them is not what it seems: [click on image to enlarge it]

David Miliband fake website screenshot

It looks exactly like David Miliband’s personal website, http://www.davidmiliband.info, right down to the photo slideshow, and work has clearly gone into making it come out well in Google search results (known as Search Engine Optimisation).

If you Google “Miliband for Leader” the seventh result on the first page is http://www.milibandforleader.co.uk.

The giveaways are the typo in the copy (“re-elcted”) but more important (and potentially damaging) is the text on the right which criticises Gordon Brown:

I will be looking to run as Leader of the Labour party once Gordon has finally accepted that he has lost the Election and can no longer cling onto power. He will go down as the only British Prime Minster to have ruled for 13 years having never been elected by the people. I will stand as the candidate for change in New New Labour.

Compare it with David Miliband’s real website:
Screenshot of David Miliband's personal website

…and the holding page for his campaign website, “New site to be launched next week.”
Holding page for David Milband's campaign website

Not a spoof, but a convincing copy. What can be done about such websites, and will we be seeing more of them in politics?

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16 Comments

  • registered to a Graham Pope in 27 Collins Place, Edinburgh, EH3 5JD

  • There should be an easy way of shutting them down as it is a clear IP issue and not a “tribute site”. I also note there was an Ed Milliband for leader website before he stood.

    Even if it was a look alike/ tribute site rather than a copy, IP could still be an issue. There is also the issue of defamation – would the comments in the right be affect David’s standing and status in the party? They are written as if he approved the view.

  • Bandwidth leeching also, the pictures link directly to the real site, as do all the pages other than the home page.

  • Gordon Brown hasn’t been PM for thirteen years – what have the muppets who wrote this page been reading?

  • (by ‘this page’ I meant the spoof site, and not the libdemvoice site)

  • Anthony Aloysius St 18th May '10 - 5:34pm

    I wonder whether Mr Pope might be a Miliband Minor Mini-Me.

  • Paul McKeown 18th May '10 - 5:40pm

    @Anthony Aloysius St

    You disagree with my characterisation of many of the lightweights who left for Labour and the fakes and trolls who claimed to have left for Labour but were always Labour in the first place as viewing the Liberal Democrat party as a Labour Mini Me?

    Or unrelated comment?

  • Anthony Aloysius St 18th May '10 - 5:42pm

    An attempt at a sort of joke.

  • Paul McKeown 18th May '10 - 5:44pm

    Then, “I agree with Anthony”!

  • David Allen 18th May '10 - 5:52pm

    Somewhat better GSOH than Liam Byrne….

  • There should be an easy way of shutting them down as it is a clear IP issue and not a “tribute site”.

    No way. We here at the Lib Dems believe in freedom of speech, and parody. 🙂

  • Jez, but hopefully not on identity theft.

  • It is simply an edited copy of the existing page, nothing more than a schoolboy prank. I should imagine the person behind this page will be feeling a little silly right now.
    As for the person who wrote the article, search engine optimisation? You’d think they’d at least research SEO before they compliment someone for doing nothing. There is no ‘SEO’ other than Google picking up on the content.
    Anthony: “An attempt at some sort of joke” – I think so, not much of an attempt though. Maybe this person was the one that used to turn on the gas taps in the science lab at school?

    Rich school boy comes to mind. Did the Lib Dems fall for the prank hook line and sinker? Hmmm.

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