California gubernatorial candidate and former eBay CEO Meg Whitman has released a sharp, distinctive, and modern-looking ad highlighting the many supposed failures of her Democratic opponent, Jerry Brown. But the attempt to connect with young, web-savvy voters has enraged Internet powerhouse Cheezeburger Network, responsible for such online juggernauts as I Can Has Cheezburger? and FAIL Blog. This afternoon, Cheezeburger Network founder Ben Huh accused Whitman of co-opting his FAIL meme for political purposes by making it appear in the ad as if Jerry Brown had been the subject of one of the website’s namesake “fails.”
The missive reads in part:
We want to make it VERY clear that FAIL Blog nor the Cheezburger Network had any involvement or knowledge of the Whitman campaign use of a screenshot of FAIL Blog. In fact, the screenshot portrayed in the video never existed because the Whitman campaign faked the content within the screenshot. FAIL Blog or the Cheezburger Network has never been involved in any endorsement of any candidate or political party and do not plan to do so.
This is a place for humor, a place to laugh, and to have light-hearted fun poking at each other and what we see in the world. The FAIL Blog community involves liberals, conservatives and everyone across the political spectrum. And we do not endorse the use of FAIL Blog’s image or any content on any of the Cheezburger sites for anyone’s political gain.
The Whitman video is still up on YouTube, and it’s unclear whether she plans to apologize or simply crush FAIL Blog entirely with her vast eBay Internet powers.
(brief FAIL Blog moment comes at 0:51)
Honesty Fail [FAIL Blog]