Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Is Healey's camp gaming Boston.com's story rankings?

Here's something odd: I was reading Boston.com at about 11:30 and saw the top five most popular stories (as determined by who e-mailed the story, you know the drill). There was this story about Patrick benefitting from a Big Dig contractor's fundraiser. It seemed oddly familier to me, and when I clicked on the link, I saw that it was the same story that ran on Oct. 12.

What's a five-day old story doing on top of the most e-mailed stories of the day?

So I clicked on the "Full List" link for the most popyular story page. That takes you to a list of the most e-mailed stories in the past hour. The Anti-Patrick story had been sent out 247 times. Here's a screenshot:

When I went to look at the daily list (most e-mailed in the day), I saw the story had been sent 303 times:

And for the past week, the story had only been e-mailed 330 times:

So what's the deal? How did this story all of a sudden go from less than 100 recommendations in five days to 247 in an hour? Did a big blog link to the article? Or is some Healey fan or the Healey campaign itself sitting around e-mailing this article to everyone? Are there Shenanigans afoot? Seems so to me.

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