When we reported October 3 that website traffic to the government’s $1 billion Obamacare advertising campaign had been grossly exaggerated and that actual enrollments were anemic, it turns out we didn’t know the half of it. From Washington, DC, to London, UK, media are crunching the numbers and coming up with a dismal picture of overstated claims and underwhelming results.
Overstated traffic stats
Quoting giddily enthusiastic federal figures, WPRO Radio reported at 8:50 AM Eastern time, October 4, that
More than seven million Americans have gone online since Tuesday to browse the Obamacare health insurance exchanges, prompting HealthCare.gov administrators to add servers and engineers to handle the Web traffic.
Another 295,000 people used federal health insurance exchange call centers and 167,000 have requested live Web chats, according to Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services spokesman Richard Olague.
But while seven million visitors to the one federal government website that hasn’t been shut down may sound impressive – it is, after all, about seven-eighths of New York City’s population – in a nation of 313,900,000 that’s not so hot.
Nor, as Jim Geraghty notes on his October 4 Campaign Spot blog, is it a big deal in terms of web traffic. Read more →