Today in the UK, the Conservative Party launched a Twitter-based campaign against Prime Minister Gordon Brown using the hashtag #Cashgordon.

Unfortunately, not only was the idea lifted straight from an American campaign site but it was easy to abuse. Within just two hours, the site was taken down. Meg Pickard compiled the excellent graph below demonstrating the rise and fall of a (very) short-lived campaign.

Politicians – treat social media with care or you’ll end up with a rather embarrassing disaster on your hands. The Conservatives know this well – it happened to them once before only weeks ago.