A smear campaign, smear tactic or simply smear is an effort to damage or call into question someone's reputation, by propounding negative propaganda.
Propaganda is "information, especially of a biased or misleading nature, used to promote a political cause or point of view".
Reputation of a social entity is an opinion about that entity, typically a result of social evaluation on a set of criteria.
Smear Campaign of the Narcissist by begood4000
It can be applied to individuals or groups.
A lie is a statement that the stating party believes to be false and that is made with the intention to deceive.
Q&A How Do I Handle Smear Campaigns? by Melanie Tonia Evans
Common targets are public officials, politicians, political candidates, activists and ex-spouses.
A candidate, or nominee, is the prospective recipient of an award or honor, or a person seeking or being considered for some kind of position; for example:
A politician is a person active in party politics, or a person holding or seeking office in government.
The term also applies in other contexts such as the workplace.
The phrase "smear campaign" became popular from around 1936.