A longtime go-to conservative news aggregator is about to see some competition from the unlikeliest of places: Silicon Valley.
According to the Washington Examiner, three anonymous California conservatives are gearing up to launch an aggregator to rival Drudge Report amid what many are referring to as a rapid left-wing editorial trend from the once-groundbreaking right-wing platform.
The forthcoming site was first announced with a web campaign known as “Free Matt Drudge,” which included a tongue-in-cheek petition demanding the alternative media giant’s founder Matt Drudge be release at once from whichever “progressive’s basement” he was being held hostage in.
“We love Matt Drudge and know the only way the Drudge Report would have gone so far left is if he was being held hostage in some progressive’s basement,” a message on the site reads. “For this reason, we demand his immediate release without condition.”
You can find our site here: https://t.co/JkCe8eMXou
— FreeMattDrudge (@FreeMattDrudge) December 18, 2019
Of course, the petition is satirical.
The message, however, is anything but, one of the site’s founders told The Washington Times — and the intention of the petition is to gauge market interest in the rival platform.
According to the anonymous founder, Drudge Report’s recent leftward editorial trend, which corresponded closely with the Ukraine scandal and the ensuing impeachment of President Donald Trump by a Democrat-controlled House of Representatives, has highlighted a serious need for more competition within the conservative news media marketplace.
An innovative platform at launch in 1995, Drudge Report has been a news media staple among conservatives for two decades. But a long-running surge in links to left-wing establishment media content from CNN, The New York Times and The Washington Post has loyal audience members worried Drudge’s ideology may have changed.
Web traffic analytics reveal the site is steadily bleeding readers in the wake of those fears.
Meanwhile, a number of competitors — from Whatfinger News and The Liberty Daily to the newly released Bongino Report — are beginning to gain traction with wider audiences.
Drudge has abandoned you. I NEVER will. 🚨👇🏻👇🏻🚨
Dan Bongino Teases Drudge Report Competitor ‘Bongino Report’ https://t.co/j6JXXMznQM
— Dan Bongino (@dbongino) November 27, 2019
“We’ve leaned so hard on Matt Drudge for so long that we’ve just kind of taken it for granted that he would always be there as a high-quality product that would really identify the core issues that are affecting the country and bring them front and center to a wide audience,” the forthcoming aggregator’s co-founder told The Washington Times.
“We’ve learned over the last three years that we can’t take that for granted,” he added. “That’s why it’s so important for media entrepreneurs to get out there and start being proactive.
The site’s founders are expected to remain anonymous to avoid potential backlash from employers and colleagues within the technology industry, the Washington Examiner reported.
“The nature of Silicon Valley is that while there are lots of nice people that are in Silicon Valley, on the whole, it tends to be less than an open-minded or tolerant region when it comes to political persuasion,” one founder told the outlet. “Even the slightest bit of dissent is treated harshly.”
Regardless of the perceived threat from Big Tech, however, the yet-unnamed aggregator will go live sometime in mid-January should the petition receive substantial attention.
The site will feature news from websites across the political spectrum, albeit with editorialized conservative headlines.
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