November 2, 2004 2:57 PM PST

Sites scramble for Election Day results

U.S. voters flocked to the Web on Tuesday, as news sites pulled out the stops on Election Day coverage, offering everything from the latest exit poll results to nuts-and-bolts information on where to vote.

MSNBC.com set up a voter complaint hotline and began publishing real-time data on alleged voting problems in all 50 states. Polling stations with e-voting machines drew the most calls, according to the site, with more than 18,000 complaints by mid-afternoon Tuesday.

Some Web sites, including the Drudge Report, offered early takes based on exit poll results which, by mid-afternoon, showed some encouraging numbers for Sen. John Kerry in key battleground states such as Florida and Pennsylvania.

Meanwhile, the political campaigns themselves have used their Web sites to raise millions of dollars in small grassroots contributions. They're using e-mail and Web tools to coordinate phone banks of volunteers in widely dispersed areas, all focusing on whichever states or cities look most important, based on the latest polls.

People flocked to the Web sites of both U.S. presidential candidates on Monday, according to the latest report issued by ComScore Networks.

The Internet statistics provider released a report on Tuesday that indicated that both the Kerry-Edwards 2004 and Bush-Cheney '04 Web sites received more than 300,000 hits from U.S. visitors Monday. The traffic spike, on the eve of the election, more than doubled the average daily traffic for both sites.

GeorgeWBush.com landed 317,000 visits, roughly 3 percent more than Kerry's site, which tallied 306,000 on Monday. Traffic to the Kerry site was 128 percent higher than normal, while the Bush site was up by 103 percent.

ComScore, based in Reston, Va., said workplace users accounted for more than half of all traffic to each campaign site. While 160,000 work-based Web surfers visited Kerry's site yesterday, 189,000 sought out Bush's.

The two campaign sites have traded leads in the traffic count over the last several months. While Kerry's had the lead in ComScore's July and August ratings, and has garnered more traffic over the last three weeks, GeorgeWBush.com prevailed in September.

In a separate study, researchers at AlertSite found that Kerry's site has been running more efficiently than Bush's since the end of August. AlertSite said that since Aug. 28, the Kerry site has had an average response time--the period it takes for a page to load into a Web browser--of less than one second, while GeorgeWBush.com needed an average of 5.5 seconds to respond.

AlertSite also determined that the official site of the Democratic National Committee outperformed its Republican counterpart. Since Aug. 28, the DNC site has had an average response time of roughly two seconds, while GOP.com has needed an average of almost 6 seconds to download. Third-party candidate Ralph Nader's site had an average response time of just less than 3 seconds during the same period.

The Boca Raton, Fla., research firm also tracked major outages at the sites since the end of August. Kerry's site did not experience any, while GeorgeWBush.com went down for just more than an hour on Sept. 2 and had a six-hour blackout on Sept. 20. GOP.com also recorded an hour-long outage Sept. 20. Ken Godskind, vice president of marketing at AlertSite, said the dual issues' coincidence indicates that they might have been the result of a coordinated attack by hackers.

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number of hits per website irrelevant
I have to question the significance of number of hits on a web site. That you would mention it over and over is an indication of the paucity of material you are drawing on for your story.
Posted by (1 comment )
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Can a Bush supporter please explain this?
Why do you support Bush? He is unintelligent, wants to limit freedoms in the name of feeling safe(who is stupid enough to give up rights for a feeling?), he put us back in debt, etc. This man makes Quayle seem intellint.

I have never felt like a major party candidate is dangerous to this country or world, but Bush is. He is the antithesis of what this country was founded on, yet people like him.

Of course Kerry is flawed as well, and is as deeply in the pockets of corporate interests as Bush is, but I don't get the vibe of him wanting to be King, which is what dumbya truly wants.

Hopefully, the people we retake the government. It is so controlled by corporate interests, that is usually doesn't matter who is in office. What is good for america is not always what is good for corporations, we seem to have forgotten about that.

What we need is 2 parties that are truly different. The GOP and dems are just different sides of the same coin. I really don't expect things to change since most americans are stupid enough to believe what the parties spin(read: lie) or realize that both parties work in unison to create a divide among people with menaingless labels. The parties drone on endlessly without actually saying anything meaningful or important. Just the same old crap over and over.

Things are so bad, that I think it will take a revolution to change things, not necessarily(and hopefully not) a violent revolution. This will happen someday, but sadly not soon, since right now americans are happy to be complacent sheep.
Posted by (242 comments )
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Check the turnout dummy!!!
To America, this is a revolution! Turnout numbers
like this are revolutionary! If George W. Bush
did anything for this country it would be this! He
inspired such passions that most registered voters
actually went out to vote! Love him or hate him,
at least he got America to the polls! Thanks Georgie.
Now I hope Kerry will reverse this perilous direction
Georgie put us on!
Posted by Johnny Mnemonic (374 comments )
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