2) Joe created this problem by choosing the url, myspace.com/barackobama. This is cybersquatting, pure and simple. Even if you love Barack Obama, when you choose the name of a public figure you have to expect at some point they are going to want to control their official message.
Exactly. I wonder how many of those putative 160k friends signed up thinking maybe they were signing up to something from Obama himself. That'd be understandable since, you know, it has his name.
"The better solution is not to regulate it at all. You may like the idea of gov't shutting down speech that bothers you. But that isn't free speech, and it is most certainly not good for the people."
For all your mistrust of government, you're putting a whole lot of faith in one monopolistic corporation.
It's been the experience in this country since the days of Teddy Roosevelt and the original trust-busters, that you do not allow services that are dominated by one or two corporations to operate without a substantial amount of regulation.
Back in the old days, everyone was free to go wherever they wanted -- but if you wanted to get their by train, you'd have to go by way of one of the robber barrons.
Somehow, I get the feeling that your definition of freedom of speech is pretty much useless for most people. It only guarantees the freedom for the owner of the pipe.
"In fact, Google News lists 341 hits for "Ned Lamont" in the last month.... [T]here have been only 39 hits in the last month on Google News for "Steven Laffey.'"
For God's sake, doesn't anyone know about the Internet any more? Those are 'results' not 'hits'. Hits are what happen when you (or rather your browser) looks up a web page. Either of those candidates are likely to have generated way more than a couple hundred hits.