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Don't Count Drudge Out
Slate ^ | November 11, 2008 | Jack Shafer

Posted on 11/11/2008 7:20:20 AM PST by St. Louis Conservative

At the beginning of the summer, the press considered the Drudge Report so influential that its proprietor, Matt Drudge, was thought to be in position to determine the fall election's results.

Jonathan Martin and Ben Smith of Politico wrote that he had "an uncanny ability to drive the national conversation" and quoted Mitt Romney's press secretary saying that Drudge "serves as an assignment editor for the national press corps." In a piece titled "How Matt Drudge Rules the (Political) World," Washingtonpost.com reporter Chris Cillizza wrote that Drudge and his site "sit at the junction of politics and journalism in the modern media age." Cillizza pointed to both the Politico story and the 2006 book by John F. Harris and Mark Halperin, The Way To Win: Taking the White House in 2008, which anointed Drudge as "the single most influential purveyor of information about American politics." Harris and Halperin also credited Drudge as a major reason for John Kerry's2004 defeat.

By the fall, Drudge had lost it, the press surmised. "Does Matt Drudge, an unabashed conservative, still have huge clout in shaping the media's coverage?" the Washington Post's Howard Kurtz asked on Sept. 18. "Or is his influence overstated by those seeking a simple explanation for why MSM types do what they do?" Kurtz cited TPM's Greg Sargent, who had just chronicled the decline of Drudge's influence over cable news. By late October, Media Matters' Eric Boehlert was calling the Drudge Report "unplugged down the stretch." Cillizza expanded on Boehlert's theme in his blog on Oct. 30, quoting a series of wishful headlines on the Drudge Report hinting at a possible upset of Barack Obama by John McCain.

(Excerpt) Read more at slate.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: drudge; drudgereport; mattdrudge; newmedia

1 posted on 11/11/2008 7:20:20 AM PST by St. Louis Conservative
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To: St. Louis Conservative

LOL Drudge will be the Bane of Obama’s existance... Look for all the Left Looney’s to try and silence Matt.


2 posted on 11/11/2008 7:23:57 AM PST by tomnbeverly (Obamanation, here comes the pogrom against Conservatives.)
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To: St. Louis Conservative

I don’t subscribe to the Enquirer and I never go to Drudge.

That would change if he returns to the Drudge of the 90’s.


3 posted on 11/11/2008 7:26:13 AM PST by Glenn (Free Venezuela!)
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To: St. Louis Conservative

There is not a newsroom in America without a browser pointed to Drudge.


4 posted on 11/11/2008 7:26:56 AM PST by TC Rider (The United States Constitution - 1791. All Rights Reserved.)
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To: St. Louis Conservative
That's right lefties, try to make it sound as though Drudge is now ineffective.

Although Drudge does lean toward the right, he was very fair to Obama on many occasions. IMHO nothing anyone could have done would have changed the outcome of this election. Bambi had this in the bag due to 24 hour glowing media praise, an weak Republican candidate, failing economy and a lame duck President who's approval rating was sinking to about the IQ level of Obama.

5 posted on 11/11/2008 7:31:20 AM PST by softwarecreator (Wow, free food, free gas and no more mortgage payments after January 2009, thanks Obama!!)
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To: tomnbeverly

http://www.drudgereport.com/flashbol.htm


6 posted on 11/11/2008 7:32:27 AM PST by TornadoAlley3 (Obama is everything Oklahoma is not.)
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To: TC Rider

I have just not been that hooked on Drudge. Now I am hooked on FR. Last week was like a addict on withdrawal.


7 posted on 11/11/2008 7:36:03 AM PST by mel
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To: St. Louis Conservative
Like so many things, Drudge started out great and was a valuable resource, but then he wasn't. I quit going there. The last few times I did, it was only good for picking up a bunch of spyware. Not worth it.
8 posted on 11/11/2008 7:39:29 AM PST by GBA
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To: Glenn

Explain to me how Drudge was different, say, 10 years ago, than he is now.

Please be VERY specific.


9 posted on 11/11/2008 7:43:06 AM PST by St. Louis Conservative
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To: GBA

I still look at Drudge. He has the most interesting aggregate of stories - other than Free Republic of course!


10 posted on 11/11/2008 7:43:50 AM PST by St. Louis Conservative
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To: softwarecreator

Drudge leans right for sure, however the real bias on his page is AGAINST mainstream media bias. He has also been very favorable to Sarah Palin. Drudge hates your run of the mill Republican RINOs like McCain.


11 posted on 11/11/2008 7:46:45 AM PST by St. Louis Conservative
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To: St. Louis Conservative

FR is a lot better at presenting relevant news stories than Drudge.

I’ll give you an example of why I come here rather than Drudge. During the news cycle with the lying girl who carved a B backwards onto her own cheek, Drudge blared the headline for the whole day, while the FR thread had some reasonable commentary to temper the story that was bound to wind up as a fraud.

The value-add of FReepers themselves should never be underestimated :-)


12 posted on 11/11/2008 7:57:09 AM PST by VictoryGal (Never give up, never surrender!)
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To: VictoryGal

Agreed. I still love Drudge, but that “B” mutilation story was a black-eye and an embarrassment for Drudge. Those kinds of things are pretty rare though - I look forward to him being a fly in Obama’s ointment.


13 posted on 11/11/2008 7:58:58 AM PST by St. Louis Conservative
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To: St. Louis Conservative
Drudge hates your run of the mill Republican RINOs like McCain

Yeah, I can understand that. Whenever anyone asked why I was going to vote for McCain I always told them I wasn't voting for McCain, I was voting against Obama.

14 posted on 11/11/2008 7:59:36 AM PST by softwarecreator (Wow, free food, free gas and no more mortgage payments after January 2009, thanks Obama!!)
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To: mel

I see your sign up date was in 1998...same as mind. A decade later, and I’m as hooked on FR as I was in 1998. I can’t think of anything I’ve really done consecutively for 10 years! It’s pretty amazing!


15 posted on 11/11/2008 8:00:10 AM PST by Hildy
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To: VictoryGal
During the news cycle with the lying girl who carved a B backwards onto her own cheek, Drudge blared the headline for the whole day

Yeah, that was bad, wasn't it? I still cringe everytime I think of it.

16 posted on 11/11/2008 8:04:08 AM PST by softwarecreator (Wow, free food, free gas and no more mortgage payments after January 2009, thanks Obama!!)
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To: St. Louis Conservative
Please be VERY specific.

He made news happen. He had sources. He had clout. When was the last time he broke an important story? Be VERY specific.

17 posted on 11/11/2008 8:06:15 AM PST by Glenn (Free Venezuela!)
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To: Hildy

Same here. I signed up originally with my own name before my current Aug 1998 sign up date. I found FR on Drudge when it first appeared there. When did FR first come on Drudge, doesn’t anyone know?


18 posted on 11/11/2008 8:06:20 AM PST by Ditter
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To: St. Louis Conservative

Never underestimate the war between print and broadcast vs. the Internet. Print and broadcast has tried, with varying degrees of effectiveness to master online, yet for the most part falls significantly short of taking over the Internet. With HuffPo, Politico, Kos, and Google being so firmly inside the Obama camp, now more than ever these sites and companies need stiff competition and outing for their agendas.


19 posted on 11/11/2008 8:07:43 AM PST by AmericanGirlRising (RINO Hunting)
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To: AmericanGirlRising

Isn’t HuffPo the biggest news/political blog in the world? How did that happen?


20 posted on 11/11/2008 8:09:30 AM PST by St. Louis Conservative
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To: Hildy

OH gosh, what would we do without it?
I am off TV news and other mainstream news.
I will have to start looking at Drudge also. I used to look at CNN et al, but with the mania now I refuse to do that


21 posted on 11/11/2008 8:10:00 AM PST by mel
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To: softwarecreator

I just wish I had come up with the idea. He lives and works in a lavish Miami condo in a resort hotel.

Just crazy. As a reporter myself, I would frankly rather do that. Actual decent pay, and you get to drive the news, at least a bit. :)


22 posted on 11/11/2008 8:11:14 AM PST by rwfromkansas ("Carve your name on hearts, not marble." - C.H. Spurgeon)
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To: Glenn

The “B” mutilation story. LOL.

Drudge succeeds by not necessarily breaking stories, but by pushing stories into the mainstream that wouldn’t be covered otherwise. I don’t even know how Drudge would break a story anyway - he doesn’t have reporters/correspondents.


23 posted on 11/11/2008 8:12:44 AM PST by St. Louis Conservative
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To: St. Louis Conservative
I don’t even know how Drudge would break a story anyway

You must not have been here 10 years ago.

24 posted on 11/11/2008 8:15:17 AM PST by Glenn (Free Venezuela!)
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To: GBA
I quit going there. The last few times I did, it was only good for picking up a bunch of spyware. Not worth it.

Exactly why we quit the site a good 7 years ago. He no longer exists for me.

25 posted on 11/11/2008 8:17:05 AM PST by ErnBatavia (Cuba got "Change"...in 1959)
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To: St. Louis Conservative

Enough Soros money buys enough advertising coupled with favorable Google AdWords placement, and you’ve bought yourself the biggest news/political blog in the world.


26 posted on 11/11/2008 8:18:01 AM PST by AmericanGirlRising (RINO Hunting)
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To: VictoryGal
I’ll give you an example of why I come here rather than Drudge. During the news cycle with the lying girl who carved a B backwards onto her own cheek, Drudge blared the headline for the whole day, while the FR thread had some reasonable commentary to temper the story that was bound to wind up as a fraud.

That's Drudge's MO. He blares the shocking, scandalous headline right up until, or sometimes after, the story has been discredited; then it disappears without a whisper. It's a rumor site, not a news site; sometimes the rumors pan out, but usually not.

Can anyone name a major story Drudge has broken since Monica? That one story inflated his importance beyond reason, and he's now belatedly coming back to Earth.

27 posted on 11/11/2008 8:18:17 AM PST by ReignOfError
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To: Ditter
When did FR first come on Drudge, doesn’t anyone know?

I think very late 1997.

28 posted on 11/11/2008 8:19:01 AM PST by ErnBatavia (Cuba got "Change"...in 1959)
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To: Glenn

Yeah, I know he DID break the Lewinsky story because he had a source at Newsweek or something - however I can’t think of any other stories he broke. Drudge’s entire claim to fame was breaking that story.

And no, I wasn’t here 10 years ago.


29 posted on 11/11/2008 8:21:14 AM PST by St. Louis Conservative
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To: rwfromkansas
I just wish I had come up with the idea.

So you didn't come up with the idea but what's stopping you from doing the same? We sure could use another Drudge to help counter the total left wing MSM. If you do you'd find a LOT of support, I'm sure. I'm a software developer and can build websites, if I had reporting skills (which I don't) I'd open one up in a second. You can guess that I totally hate the MSM and would love to be part of bring them down.

30 posted on 11/11/2008 8:22:26 AM PST by softwarecreator (Wow, free food, free gas and no more mortgage payments after January 2009, thanks Obama!!)
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To: Glenn
He had clout. When was the last time he broke an important story? Be VERY specific.

Good point. Where was his headline about Obama's call for an internal security force?

31 posted on 11/11/2008 8:23:16 AM PST by aimhigh
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To: St. Louis Conservative
I cannot believe folks cannot SEE why Drudge gets so many hits. It has nothing to do with right or wrong, right or left, did he get a scoop or didn't he.

Drudge has what the editors of the NY Times, LA times and com.Post and all of the others don't.

An eye for a good story. That is it. That is all.

You go to his site. Almost every single story he links is either of critical importance or it is just damned interesting. These are stories that tell us about who we are, where the world is headed or how things work. Or don't work.

At that he has no peer. He understands which articles in the MSM are good better than does the MSM itself who wrote them.

That's all he does. Nothing more. Nothing less.

32 posted on 11/11/2008 8:26:59 AM PST by AndyJackson
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To: Ditter
Same here. I signed up originally with my own name before my current Aug 1998 sign up date. I found FR on Drudge when it first appeared there. When did FR first come on Drudge, doesn’t anyone know?

There was a link on Drudge called "Whitewater Files" which was the precursor to FR - I'm pretty sure I first linked to it in the Summer of 1997. Not sure how long it was there before I discovered it (my Uncle told me about it at a family 4th of July picnic in 1997, that's how I pinpoint the date).

33 posted on 11/11/2008 8:27:20 AM PST by Shethink13
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To: Ditter
When did FR first come on Drudge, doesn’t anyone know?

During Whitewater scandal.

34 posted on 11/11/2008 8:27:35 AM PST by jslade (People who are easily offended......OFFEND ME!)
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To: AndyJackson

Agreed.


35 posted on 11/11/2008 8:29:35 AM PST by St. Louis Conservative
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To: lainie

BTTT


36 posted on 11/11/2008 8:32:25 AM PST by A CA Guy ( God Bless America, God bless and keep safe our fighting men and women.)
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To: softwarecreator

Well, good point. Those who think that because an idea has been done before it means they can’t succeed at the same thing are incorrect. Hmm.


37 posted on 11/11/2008 8:33:03 AM PST by rwfromkansas ("Carve your name on hearts, not marble." - C.H. Spurgeon)
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To: Glenn
He made news happen. He had sources. He had clout. When was the last time he broke an important story? Be VERY specific.

Drudge never "made news happen." I would just guess that Druge has discovered that breaking stories, himself, is a two way street. He doesn't have the resources or contacts to do due diligence on key stories, the way a newspaper editor can or should. A near death experience with a defamation suit is all it takes to decide not to be in that business. Leave it for the big boys with large teams of trained attorneys.

38 posted on 11/11/2008 8:46:53 AM PST by AndyJackson
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To: VictoryGal

I also agree. If Drudge disappeared, I wouldn’t miss him. He’s simply an news aggregator - a bunch of raw links to stories that may/may not be true. FReepers do a great job of presceen and analysis. Their nose for BS masquerading as news is acute.

On the other hand, if I were one of those “journalists” sitting in front of a blank computer screen, desperately looking for a story idea so my editor doesn’t find out I’m a hack, I’d probably have Drudge linked to my browser, too.


39 posted on 11/11/2008 8:47:47 AM PST by torqemada ("Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!")
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To: rwfromkansas
Those who think that because an idea has been done before it means they can’t succeed at the same thing are incorrect

Of course. Bill gates didn't invent software or computers yet it worked out okay for him.

40 posted on 11/11/2008 9:54:07 AM PST by softwarecreator (Wow, free food, free gas and no more mortgage payments after January 2009, thanks Obama!!)
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To: Shethink13; Jim Robinson
Fall of 97 sounds about right for me. My son got us started on a Webtv for my b-day in Sept 97 and I found Drudge right away. I had never had a computer before and I was fascinated. I almost immediately found FR and soon I was signed up and posting (timidly). I changed from my own name to Ditter in Aug 98, went to DC for the March for Justice in Oct. 98 and met John Robinson. I have hardly missed a day at FR since and I LOVE it. My son gave me a laptop for my b-day this year so I could stay connected and travel. Thank you JimRob!
41 posted on 11/11/2008 10:59:18 AM PST by Ditter
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To: ErnBatavia

I meant to include you in my post #41.


42 posted on 11/11/2008 11:01:21 AM PST by Ditter
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