drudge report

drudge report

The Influence and Impact of the Drudge Report

1. Introduction

The Drudge Report is a unique news website run by Matt Drudge, typically featuring a juxtaposition of tabloid journalism and political commentary. The Report comprises links to stories from other news outlets, and is considered a blog. It also hosts its own column, and has carried breaking news in the past. Its ideological agenda is somewhat unpredictable, though many consider it conservative. Its influence has grown, with increasing website viewership and a growing readership. Time Magazine included it in a list of 25 influential American websites, and in December 2006, the New York Times reported that the Drudge Report was the most often linked to political news website. Drudge is renowned for breaking stories, and several influential journalists have claimed that they monitor the Drudge Report to determine which stories to follow. Matt Drudge has been given various awards in the past, and his site has a reputation for being a thorn in the side of the traditional American media. While Drudge rarely speaks about the Drudge Report, and it is hard to predict his personal attitudes. How it may fits to the title for the section: This excerpt offers a brief overview of the Drudge Report, its history, its influence and its ideological motives. Although it is has a brief summary of the Drudge Report, it fails to mention who is Matt Drudge and his beliefs/values. While this may not be essential to the essay, it would help in understanding more about the Drudge Report, as his background greatly shapes the character of the site.

2. The Drudge Report: A Powerful News Aggregator

Following the pattern established with talk radio, internet news broke onto the national scene in 1998 with Matt Drudge’s “Drudge Report.” A news aggregator updated several times daily, the Report consists of a smattering of links to stories and columns culled from all over the world. Right from the beginning, the Report received a great deal of attention from the public and other media outlets. During the Monica Lewinsky scandal, the Report became the first source for many people seeking news, and Drudge’s role in the case won him the Webby award for “internet journalist of the year.” Even today, the Drudge Report remains one of the most heavily visited sites on the internet. But why has the Drudge Report been so successful? And what does its success say about internet news? To understand why the Drudge Report has been so successful, we need to consider the state of the mainstream media. For many years now there has been a growing perception that the so-called “objective” media, whether print or television, is selective about what it reports, often exhibiting a liberal bias. Whether justified or not, this belief has led many people, conservatives in particular, to seek alternative news sources. This trend exploded in the late 1990s with the rise of 24-hour news programs and the Fox News network. But as far as print media goes, internet news offers the easiest and most diverse alternative to traditional news sources. So it is no surprise that the Drudge Report, which will nearly always have links to news stories not covered by the mainstream media, has an audience of millions.

3. The Drudge Report’s Role in Shaping Public Opinion

Ultimately, Matt Drudge’s lack of fact-checking is an issue when discussing the influence of his work with the report. But when looking at the big picture, the Drudge Report helps shape public opinion due to the power of gatekeeping. The New Media has the ability to be the deciding factor in what the public knows and what the public does not know. The topic of Iraq’s WMDS is a frequent example of the new media spreading new opinions on a certain topic. With the Drudge Report being the first source of media to break the news of the lack of WMDS evidence in Iraq, many other media outlets took his lead and reported with the same subjectivity. This action confused the public and started to slowly sway the majority opinion that at the time, was to go to war with Iraq. Another example is when “Drudge broke the story of the Clinton impeachment in 1998.” With the report being the hot topic conservatives quickly took this and ran it through the media and the public perceived that this was a bigger deal than it actually was. This rapid spread of information though the conservative media helped shape a majority opinion that damaged Clinton’s presidential image. Influence can be interpreted in many ways, but the ability to set the tone on a discussion is a true show of influence and that is what Drudge has accomplished with the report. With the upcoming 2012 election, it is clear that the Drudge Report is going to continue to help shape public opinion with its biased, yet effective tactics. Posting all of the recent election polls directly on the front page is just a teaser to the election coverage that will occur in the next year. This is an attempt to show that a Romney victory is inevitable thus leading people to start believing it. But the real influence will be seen when the report attacks President Obama in attempt to change the public image of him in negative way. This will be huge factor with many independent voters, as it will cause them to reconsider their previous voting choice for Obama. A change in public image is what ultimately caused certain candidates to lose in elections and that is Drudge’s end game for Obama.

4. Controversies Surrounding the Drudge Report

However, others consider Drudge Report to be critical in twenty-first-century journalism. Boston Globe columnist Jeff Jacoby wrote: “The announcement that the new Fox website would feature a daily survey of the Web’s best reporting, under the guidance of Matt Drudge, is less a sign of conservatism triumphing than of the mainstream media’s inability to ignore the power of the Drudge phenomenon. Drudge changed the rules of the game, and journalism will never be the same.” Keach Hagey at Politico.com has also argued that trying to ignore Matt Drudge is a bad idea for any reporter, stating, “Put another way, failing to track Drudge can be perilous to a journalist’s career. When he headlines a story, it goes national.”

There are many examples of the opinions that Big Government has of Drudge Report News and Andrew. They are often critical of him. An example of this is when Drudge was trying to gain credentials to cover Congress. An aide to then-Sen. Ernest Hollings told Roll Call that the Senate Press Gallery shouldn’t credential Drudge Report because of the site’s often-questionable reputation. Andrew has also been the victim of a lie. In a defamation lawsuit filed in Washington, D.C., federal court, the complaint alleges that Gilbert accused Drudge of being a “veritable one-man sewer.”

5. Conclusion: The Drudge Report’s Continuing Significance

The media space and the way information is presented have evolved and developed beyond recognition in some thirty years. A major factor contributing to this evolution has been the development of communication technologies. Gone are the days when a person had to wait for the day’s newspapers to get a glance of the headlines and developments over the past twenty-four hours. During the 1950s and for the following thirty years, watching television was the new media; it provided instant media and quickly became the most popular form of gathering information and news. With the development of satellite communication, the internet, and computer technology, the dissemination of information became quicker, and it was the development of these information technologies that set the platform for how we gather our information today. The internet has a reputation for being the most up-to-date and quickest way to get information, and the developing technologies have made it easier for one to access. This has led to it being the most popular information source when compared to newspapers, television, and radio, with no different target audience. This has caused many web pages to appear, which are replicas of newspapers’ websites, aimed at attracting those who would usually get their news from the print version. However, no web page has exerted as much influence as the Drudge Report. Created by Matt Drudge, it has no doubt had an impact on journalism and the media due to its sensationalist approach to news and affiliations to political parties, as well as its impact on political events and the methods in which it presents its news.

Influence and Impact of the Drudge Report:

The Drudge Report was founded almost 15 years ago, and the concept and the way propaganda and news are presented have changed. The Drudge Report comes from a time when the internet was just starting to grow, and web design and aesthetics were becoming more and more prominent. The idea that one person can create a web page that reaches huge audiences and has only that purpose. In this report, I will delve into the design of the Drudge Report, the influence and impact of the Drudge Report, and finally, the change in the design of news-oriented web pages.


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