12 June 2006

Don't link to breitbart.com for your news

(BoB note: This is a slightly edited reprint of the column I originally wrote in December 2005 at the old JAZZ from HELL community on Livejournal.  With Drudge linking more and more to breitbart.com, I felt this information needed repeating.)

Unless you want to financially support Matt Drudge and his network of Republican propaganda outlets, don't click on breitbart.com links for your news.

Andrew Breitbart is a guy that used to work for Drudge—the GOP lapdog who first was fed er, squawked details of the Clinton BJ debacle and hyped bogus tales like Kerry's supposed affair and Cindy Sheehan's missing supporters.   Breitbart also helped Ariana Huffington set up her blogsite.   All the bastard does is list wire stories from established news services like the AP.   Drudge then links to Breitbart's site, thus avoiding having to link directly to any news organizations Drudge's handlers deem too left-leaning.

Breitbart appears to be a tool in all of this.   Having raised eyebrows after working with Huffington, the wishy-washy netnerd made his political allegiances clear earlier this year.   Drudge himself has stated that he's "just trying to help" his friend.   Aww, how cute.

Nomally I wouldn't give a shit about this kind of nonsense, but for 3 things: It takes away legitimate business from the news sources, falsely boosts the legitimacy of Breitbart's site, and it provides myriad opportunities for Breitbart's zealously right-wing advertisers to cash in.   Although it should be factored in that probably half or more of Drudge (and Breitbart's) readership are Democrats and independents scoping out the "other side," advertisers don't think in such terms.   Hits are hits, and readers looking for objectivity or innocently clicking on links to read what they think are wire reports are in fact keeping dishonest dirtbags like Drudge and Breitbart in the black.

Check the URL's of links before you click them by hovering over them with your mouse pointer and looking at your browser's status bar at bottom.   If it's a breitbart.com link, but you want to see the article itself anyway, take a few keywords from the news item and hunt it down at its original source using Google's news search.   Asshat Matt himself has done this with some of his links, so cynical he is to avoid sending traffic to the sources he steals his success from.

Bottom line: let's just not egg on Drudge and his cronies.

2 comments:

AndyZap said...

I happen to think that Andrew Breibart is pretty damn brilliant and his news service gets infinitely more hits than the left wing blogs. Why? Conservatives are more likely to be news junkies and they like to know details. The media landscape is filled with the remains of broadcasting disasters such as Mario Cuomo, Alan Dershowitz, and Air America. The intellectual constituency that might support left wing broadcasting is far too small for a viable share in a competitive market. As much as Keith Olberman rails against Bill O'Reilly, he can only dream about O'Reilly's market share.

guzmán said...

"I happen to think that Andrew Breibart is pretty damn brilliant and his news service gets infinitely more hits than the left wing blogs."

In the time since I first wrote that post (which in Internet terms is centuries), I have come to agree with you to some degree, but not for the hit count. For Pete's sake, I could post porn here and rapidly pass by most other meaningful blogs. The right-wing news sites still traffic in titillation because it draws in the demographic they seek. They've never shied away from exploiting the carnal side of human nature.

Reason I think Breitbart is above others at this point is because he (and Drudge) started purveying their newsporn long before the left tried copying it in their own weird way... and while the rightys have hardly changed their approach, leftys are sinking lower and lower into the mire (see Raw Story for a great example) to try and attract some of that traffic. It's just like the way CNN has tried to mimic Fox in ugly ways, and it's turned viewers off.

And Breitbart's lucky cuz he had a nice initial traffic boost from Drudge to begin with. Without that, he woulda struggled and bailed early.


"Why? Conservatives are more likely to be news junkies and they like to know details."

Uh, no. Conservatives like the bullshit they believe in to be reinforced by propaganda. It's protection from the nasty, filthy real world. There's a reason Dick Cheney only watches Fox News.

"The media landscape is filled with the remains of broadcasting disasters such as Mario Cuomo, Alan Dershowitz, and Air America."

Yes, because they sucked, had shitty management, or the content simply didn't live up to the hype.

"The intellectual constituency that might support left wing broadcasting is far too small for a viable share in a competitive market"

Well, the dumbing down of America is in full swing, or hadn't you heard?

"As much as Keith Olberman rails against Bill O'Reilly, he can only dream about O'Reilly's market share."

Nah. Keith Olbermann doesn't give a rat's ass about market share. He's saying what he wants to say, and he believes in what he says, and if his ratings grow, bonus. Idiots that hang on Bill O'Reilly's every word don't seem to get that the joke is on them... O'Reilly is the Don King of talk shows, a self-promoting phony that knows there is no such thing as bad PR and the bigger the lie, the more people believe it.

Anyway, back to Breitbart. I admire him these days because he's stuck to his guns, and so has Drudge. He's had to change little to nothing. He must take extreme satisfaction watching hapless leftys try and mimic his newsporn style. Nothing more pleasing than watching your lesser rivals fall over each other trying to copy you.