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Investigating the mysterious man behind the drudge report.
Matt Drudge is ‘the forefather of the modern populist news movement,’ says the author of a new biography of the media mogul
Hilde Kate Lysiak
Author Matthew Lysiak and his latest book.
Every journalist knows that a link from the Drudge Report is the ne plus ultra of online engagement, with the potential to send millions of pageviews to a single story.
But few reporters know much — if anything — about Matt Drudge, the press-shy media mogul behind the barebones news aggregation site he launched as a newsletter 25 years ago. Drudge, 53, has rarely been photographed, and he seldom speaks to the media. His last extensive interview, with Alex Jones , was just before President Donald Trump’s election in 2016; he refused to appear on camera.
So it was no surprise that Drudge ignored Matthew Lysiak’s repeated requests for an interview as Lysiak was working on a new biography: The Drudge Revolution: The Untold Story of How Talk Radio, Fox News, and a Gift Shop Clerk With an Internet Connection Took Down the Mainstream Media , which will be published on July 28. Lysiak, a former reporter for the Daily News , sent Drudge “a billion emails” and personally showed up at his properties in Florida and Arizona. He also sent certified letters.
“Absolutely no response,” Lysiak told Jewish Insider in a recent phone conversation from his home in Patagonia, Ariz.
The mystery surrounding Drudge drew Lysiak to investigate his past. “I would say that there’s not a single person in our generation who’s had more of an impact on the way we consume news than Matt Drudge,” Lysiak said. “But what do we know about this guy? I mean, virtually nothing. He’s an absolute recluse.”
Lysiak, 42, made do without his subject’s cooperation, interviewing more than 200 sources including Joseph Curl, “the only full-time employee ever employed by the Drudge Report ,” according to the book, which is being adapted into a film.
“The story I found out was really more than the story of this remarkable individual who, through sheer force of will, was able to usurp an entire media industry and kind of turn it on its head,” Lysiak told JI. “But also, it told this broader story about the populist movement in journalism that, I think, you can say directly led to the election of Trump.”
Drudge — who, predictably, did not respond to a request for comment from JI — came to prominence in the late ’90s when, scooping Newsweek magazine, he broke the Monica Lewinsky scandal, perhaps the most consequential political story of the decade.
“It marked a real transformation in media,” said Lysiak, who referenced a long and somewhat combative speech that Drudge gave at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., a few months later. “It’s prophetic in a lot of ways,” said Lysiak. “He’s telling all these mainstream journalists who’ve been at these cherished institutions for a very long time that they’re going to be irrelevant soon.”
Drudge, who was born in Maryland, fought hard for his own relevance. “Nothing was handed to him,” said Lysiak, noting that Drudge came from a “dysfunctional family” and didn’t attend college.
Drudge got his first few scoops, Lysiak told JI, by sifting through the trash when he was a gift shop clerk at CBS Studios. “He’s going through the garbage cans and finding the Nielsen ratings a day before they were released publicly,” he said. “It’s genius.”
Matt Drudge in 1996. (Wikipedia)
It was this DIY approach that influenced a whole new generation of young conservative reporters, including Andrew Breitbart, who began his career as an editor at the Drudge Report and went on to help found The Huffington Post before launching his eponymous site.
Breitbart, Lysiak added, also elevated the profile of Steve Bannon, the populist media executive who ran Breitbart News and then worked as Trump’s chief strategist.
In his book, Lysiak notes that Drudge formed a close bond with Breitbart because of their Jewish backgrounds. “Breitbart, who had been adopted into a Jewish family, would later tell friends, ‘It is kind of weird that Drudge and I are both secular Jews who are interested in faith issues,’” Lysiak writes. “In Breitbart, Matt saw someone with boundless energy, a skeptical worldview, and who shared a passion for headlines and news.”
Drudge’s influence cuts across political divides. The CNN host and media reporter Brian Stelter “really looked up to Matt,” Lysiak noted.
But despite his reach, Lysiak believes that Drudge has been given short shrift by the majority of media professionals.
“Matt Drudge is the godfather of all these websites,” said Lysiak. “But I feel like he also doesn’t get the credit he would normally get because he isn’t highly educated, never wanted to go to the parties, didn’t do that scene, didn’t care if he was liked. For example, I worked at the New York Daily News for quite a long time. My editors were constantly refreshing the Drudge Report page, but they would never admit that.”
“It seems like people talk about him like he’s a guilty pleasure,” Lysiak added. “Like, it’s unsophisticated to say you go on the Drudge Report . You go on that site, you’re going to see things about sex robots, natural catastrophes, aliens and then some hard news. You might get the impression that we’re on the verge of an apocalypse every time you click on the site.”
Still, Drudge hasn’t done much to advocate for himself, at least publicly. According to Lysiak, Drudge basically bowed out of public view in 2007, when Philip Weiss published a lengthy New York magazine feature about him. The day after, Lysiak said, Drudge quit his radio show. Then, over lunch with a friend, Drudge decided that it would be best if his website didn’t have a face associated with it.
“He made a Batman reference,” Lysiak said. “And he’s been dark ever since.”
Drudge has been equally quiet about his faith, but Lysiak said that he has occasionally spoken about it. “Matt definitely feels closely connected to his identity as Jewish,” Lysiak said, adding that Drudge often travels to Tel Aviv. “He remarked to one of his friends that he feels a really powerful connection with the history” of Israel, Lysiak said.
In 2018, Drudge clashed with Fox News over coverage of the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting.
“A segment on Fox News this morning where hosts laughed and joked their way through a discussion on political impact of terror was bizarre,” Drudge tweeted at the time. “Not even 48 hours since blood flowed at synagogue? Check your soul in the makeup chair!”
Such disputes are typical of Drudge’s independent streak. Lately, he has turned a jaundiced eye toward the president, coverage that has earned him scorn from Fox News host Tucker Carlson, who in a Friday segment characterized Drudge as “now firmly a man of the progressive left.”
Left or right, however, Lysiak explained that Drudge’s motivations for posting negative coverage of Trump aren’t simply ideological.
“People make this mistake of looking at him through a political lens, but Matt Drudge’s loyalty is to one thing, and that is his website and page clicks and anything relevant,” Lysiak mused. “If you notice, people are talking about Matt Drudge again.”
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Meet the Former Gift Shop Manager-Turned-Internet Personality Who Broke Clinton's Lewinsky Affair
The founder of the popular news aggregator Drudge Report is known to give few interviews and has grown increasingly reclusive
Matt Drudge played a pivotal role in the scandal that engulfed Bill Clinton 's administration (and the country) in 1998 — breaking the story of an affair with Monica Lewinsky that would nearly take down the president.
But before Drudge was an influential conservative media personality and Internet publisher, he was managing the gift shop at CBS Studios in Los Angeles, emailing bits of Hollywood insider gossip to friends.
His information, he later said , came from "scoops from the sound stages I had heard" and his "friends" in politics.
Those emailed notes, known as the Drudge Report, would grow in popularity over the years, eventually covering headlines (and the writer's opinions) on both show business and politics. The hobby was unsurprising, considering his upbringing. As he wrote in his 2000 autobiography Drudge Manifesto , his mother had worked as a member of the legal staff for Sen. Ted Kennedy while his father — also a former federal worker — had founded the website refdesk.com , which was sold in 2017.
(Drudge dedicated that book, coincidentally, to Linda Tripp , the former White House and Pentagon staffer who secretly recorded her phone calls with Lewinsky and ultimately turned them over to an independent counsel.)
His subscription base grew after he published a story that Jerry Seinfeld was seeking $1 million per episode of his hit sitcom. That led to new opportunities — in 1996, as New York magazine previously reported , Drudge got a job writing for Wired and, later, for America Online.
Those jobs came and went and by 1997, his Drudge Report emails had amassed some 85,000 subscribers. That's when Drudge landed the biggest story of his career: Newsweek , he said, had uncovered an affair between President Bill Clinton and an intern named Monica Lewinsky — but the magazine had killed the story.
Drudge ran his article about Newsweek on Jan. 17, 1998. A day later, he published a follow-up, this time with Lewinsky's name.
The story went everywhere , making Lewinsky a household name nearly overnight and further fueling the investigation that led to Clinton's impeachment in the House of Representatives. It also led to years of high traffic to Drudge's website and years of fame and notoriety for Drudge himself, a political outsider who had somehow landed the biggest story in all of politics.
His origin story was detailed in this week's episode of the FX drama Impeachment: American Crime Story , which follows the affair between Lewinsky (played by Beanie Feldstein ) and Clinton ( Clive Owen ).
Drudge is played by Billy Eichner, who told The Daily Beast that while "our politics could not be further apart," he was fascinated by Drudge. He called it "a great role."
Drudge's Hollywood portrayal traces back to the attention from his bombshell Lewinsky report, which landed him spots on radio (he previously had his own show and would occasionally guest-host for the late conservative icon Rush Limbaugh) as well as an eponymous show on Fox News.
The Fox program would be short-lived, running from June 1998 to November 1999, and ending when Drudge and the network got into a disagreement about a segment on abortion.
Still a frequently-updated site, the Drudge Report's website design remains simplistic: nothing more than series of black and white headlines and a few color photos along with Drudge-written commentary and headlines.
But the site's influence on media can't be understated, as it ushered in a new era and style of reporting. And years later, it still remains a go-to aggregator for figures in politics and media because a reference or link on Drudge's website still drives notable readers ( even if those figures have softened ).
The site set the tone for conservative media in other ways, as well. One of Drudge's early employees, Andrew Breitbart, went on to found the far-right website Breitbart News before he died in 2012 .
Drudge is now 54 years old and has never offered up his Clinton-Lewinsky source or explained how he found out about the affair.
He rarely speaks to media outlets at all and has grown more and more reclusive. In the past, though, he has been forthcoming when speaking about his website's success, telling The Miami Herald in 2003 that he estimated his annual earnings at roughly $1.2 million a year.
In 2007, New York attempted to track down the conservative journalist , who decamped from Hollywood to Florida in 2001 (both, the magazine reported, due to the lower tax rate and the privacy that could be found outside of California).
Though the magazine was never able to interview Drudge for its 2007 profile, he did email them a denial about rumors over his personal life when Out , a prominent LGBTQ magazine, said that he was gay. He has repeatedly denied this.
Years later, he gave a rare interview to controversial far-right radio host Alex Jones in 2015 , during which he spoke about how his Drudge Report has maintained its ethos, while the media landscape has changed around it.
"Drudge, to me, when I look at it right now is a correction to this groupthink," he told Jones. "There's no difference from any of these websites. You go up and down — we talk about this — what's the difference between the websites? Between a Slate or a Salon or a BuzzFeed or a HuffPo — what is the difference? There isn't any! And this is travesty. It's almost like a weird conglomerate of groupthink that has developed in a dynamic era that should be vibrating."
Drudge's right-wing critics disagree. They take particular issue with what they call his opposition to Donald Trump .
In 2020, Fox News host Tucker Carlson slammed Drudge , saying he had become "a man of the progressive left."
"But if you've seen the Drudge Report recently, you know that it has changed dramatically, 180 degrees," Carlson said. "Matt Drudge is now firmly a man of the progressive left. At times, his site is indistinguishable from The Daily Beast or any other woke propaganda outlet posing as a news company."
PEOPLE's requests for comment on Drudge's role in the unraveling of the Clinton-Lewinsky scandal — and his take on his portrayal in the show — were, predictably, not returned.
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Matt Drudge is a gay right wing conservative  blogger who runs the Drudge Report , a conservative news aggregation and gossip website, and a popular news and opinion source for American conservatives and man-made global warming deniers . His website is steadily falling in popularity, according to Alexa, and that's despite the 3-minute autorefresh script Drudge uses to artificially inflate visitor numbers (and advertising revenue).
- 1 Education
- 2 Global warming denial
- 3 Political advocacy
- 4 Closet homosexuality and homophobia
- 5.1 Alleged John Kerry intern scandal
- 5.2 Alleged Bill Clinton illegitimate child
- 5.3 Alleged CNN reporter heckling of GOP Senators
- 5.4 Ashley Todd attack hoax
- 6 References
- 7 Contact details
- 8.1 Related SourceWatch Articles
- 9 External links
Born into a liberal Jewish family, Drudge graduated 341st out of a class of 355 from High School.  He has no other education. He worked at 7-11, McDonalds, and the CBS Studios gift shop before finding his calling as an Internet gossip.
Global warming denial
The conservative The New Republic magazine notes that the Drudge Report frequently links to stories that cast doubt upon global warming: "[Drudge] loves a press release from Senator Inhofe almost as much as he loves taking pot shots at Al Gore ."  When Drudge links to a climate story, the comments section is overrun with denialist comments.  Drudge has often strung together headlines linking climate denier myths to the financial crisis as well as the suffering third world, to create the impression that any attempt to combat global warming is linked to both the financial crisis and the disadvantaging of developing nations.  Drudge was a big promoter of the climategate false scandal and, by featuring it prominently on his website, was a key player in creating the beat-up.  The Drudge Report carries at least one denialist headline a week, often prompted by the occurrence of cold weather or heavy snowfall events. Drudge has taken to publicizing freak snowstorms in warm places as a routine denialist ploy.  If a Senate hearing on global warming gets canceled because of snowy weather, it becomes a headline.   The general idea, according to Media Matters , is that for Drudge and his minions, a few days of cold weather trumps climate change science. 
Drudge guest hosted for the conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh . Drudge gained radio notoriety in the early 2000s by becoming a constant reference for news material on Limbaugh's, Sean Hannity 's, and Mark Levin 's radio shows. He was often acknowledged by conservative Michael Savage as a source of topics for Savage's rants, and for a short time hosted a Fox News television show.
Richard Siklos, an editor of Fortune magazine, called the Drudge Report a "conservative bullhorn",  the Los Angeles Times labelled Drudge a "well-known conservative warrior",  the New York Times referred to him as a "conservative muckraker",  and Glenn Greenwald called him a "right-wing hack".  Greenwald added: "Allowing [sites like the Drudge Report website] to dominate our political debates and drive media coverage guarantees a decrepit, rotted, and deeply corrupt country. ... Their endless lynch mob crusades supplant rational and substantive political debates." 
Closet homosexuality and homophobia
In 2003, Drudge faced criticism for smearing ABC reporter Jeffrey Kofman as "openly gay" with the headline "ABC News Reporter Who Filed Troops Complaint Story — Openly Gay Canadian" after Kofman interviewed anti-war soldiers in Iraq .   
Drudge also tried to derail the John Kerry presidential campaign by implying that Kerry and John Edwards were in a homosexual relationship. 
In addition, Drudge ran erroneous headlines saying that the two student killers in the Columbine High School massacre, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, were homosexual. 
Drudge's critics, like gay American writer and national talk radio host Michelangelo Signorile,   point to the allegations of homosexuality levelled at Drudge himself by David Brock of Media Matters in his memoir Blinded by the Right ,    and by columnist Jeannette Walls in her book Dish .     Walls wrote that Drudge had a long homosexual relationship with Washington D.C. landscaper, David Cohen.  Cohen confirmed the relationship to the New York Daily News .  
Despite all the evidence, Drudge continues to deny that he is gay, telling the Miami New Times in 2001 that "I go to straight bars, I go to gay bars. [Walls] never said there was sex; she said there was dating. She never had enough to go that far." 
In his memoir, David Brock relates how Drudge courted him, complete with yellow roses, and how they danced together at gay dance club Rage in L.A.. Drudge later sent Brock an email expressing the wish to be Brock's "fuck buddy". 
In 2002, Drudge threatened to sue actor Alec Baldwin after Baldwin claimed, during a Howard Stern interview, that Drudge had propositioned him.   In March 2008, Baldwin repeated the story to the LGBT magazine The Advocate , saying that there was "a kind of creepy quality" to Drudge's sexual advances, and that he was surprised Drudge was so "uptight about being gay". 
In 2005, Drudge told The Sunday Times , "No, I’m not gay. I was nearly married a few years ago."  He has also said: "How can I be gay when I'm dating a woman with boobs and rollers?" 
Out magazine named Drudge #6 of the 50 most powerful gay people in the United States in 2009, #16 in 2012, and #21 in 2013.   He was described in Out as "antigay, anti-choice and anti-tolerance".
After celebrity interviewer and former gay stripper Craig Seymour discussed his close friendship with Drudge in his autobiographical book All I Could Bare: My Life in the Strip Clubs of Gay Washington, D.C ,  Signorile and other sources used his anecdotes about Drudge to claim Drudge had been outed by Seymour.   However, Seymour denied trying to "out" Drudge in his book. 
In his book Queer externalities , author William Conley Harris states that Drudge's gay bashing is a form of homophobia experienced by men who suffer from "male homosexual panic" at being called or thought queer.  This panic, according to Harris, dictates a "preemptive homophobia" that requires the queer-baiting of others. Recent studies have linked homophobia to repressed homosexuality. 
In 2016, Drudge gifted a $700,000 house next door to his own $1.45 million Miami residence to his “longtime housemate”, Juan Carlos Alvarado, 55. Drudge had lived for 11 years with Alvarado. 
Misreporting the news
Alleged john kerry intern scandal.
During the US 2004 Presidential campaign, Drudge ran a story quoting General Wesley Clark , where Clark claimed that the John Kerry campaign would implode over an intern affair. Drudge reported that other news outlets were investigating the alleged affair. He removed it from the site shortly thereafter when the other news outlets dropped the investigations. 
Alleged Bill Clinton illegitimate child
In 1999, the Drudge Report announced that it had viewed a videotape which was the basis of a Star Magazine and Hard Copy story. Under the headline, Woman Names Bill Clinton Father Of Son In Shocking Video Confession , Drudge reported a videotaped "confession" by a former prostitute who claimed that her son was fathered by Bill Clinton. The Report stated, "To accuse the most powerful man in the world of being the father of her son is either the hoax of a lifetime, or a personal turmoil that needs resolution. Only two people may know that answer tonight." The claim turned out to be a hoax. 
Alleged CNN reporter heckling of GOP Senators
On April 1, 2007 Drudge cited an unnamed "official" source saying that CNN reporter Michael Ware had "heckled" Republican Senators McCain and Graham during a live press conference.  Drudge reported that:
An official at the press conference called Ware's conduct "outrageous," saying, "here you have two United States Senators in Bagdad giving first-hand reports while Ware is laughing and mocking their comments. I've never witnessed such disrespect. This guy is an activist not a reporter."
Ware disputed Drudge's report on CNN April 2, 2007, saying that the story was leaked "by an unnamed official of some kind to a blog", that the story was anonymous, and that no one was willing to put their name to it; he advised people to view the tape.  Video hosted by Rawstory shows that Ware did not make a sound nor ask any question during the press conference.    The Drudge Report did not retract or apologize for the story. Drudge's report was echoed in The Washington Times , which carried opinion questioning Ware's trustworthiness, and in many conservative blogs, some of which called for Ware's resignation. 
Ashley Todd attack hoax
On October 23, 2008, Drudge published an unconfirmed exclusive story regarding Ashley Todd, the 20-year old employee   of the College Republican National Committee (CRNC) and John McCain volunteer who had allegedly been attacked by a black male for having a McCain sticker on her car. Drudge reported the story without a link but as 'developing', titling the headline "SHOCK: McCAIN VOLUNTEER ATTACKED AND MUTILATED IN PITTSBURGH - "B" carved into 20 yr old Woman's Face"  . The story set off a "storm of media attention",  being quickly picked up by many conservative bloggers and right-wing talk radio show hosts, all citing the Drudge Report as their source. It was also reported in newspapers and TV both in the US and around the world.  The story was confirmed to be a hoax perpetrated by Todd and, according to Talking Points Memo , spread to reporters by McCain's Pennsylvania Communications Director.  
- ↑ Sokol, Brett (2001-06-28). The Drudge Retort . Miami New Times. Retrieved on 2006-11-01. “Matt Drudge: "I am a conservative"”
- ↑ Matt Drudge and Julia Phillips (2000). Drudge Manifesto, Chapter one online . Denver Post. Retrieved on 2007-03-02.
- ↑ " It’s Always Snowing on the Drudge Report ", The New Republic (2009-12-09) . Retrieved on 2011-04-24 .
- ↑ Lambert, Tim (2011 [last update]). Drudge and the denialists : Deltoid . scienceblogs.com . Retrieved on 23 November 2011.
- ↑ Johnson, Brad (2011 [last update]). Drudge Hijacks Headlines To Sell Global Warming Denial | ThinkProgress . thinkprogress.org . Retrieved on 23 November 2011.
- ↑ Rayner, Gordon. " Who's to blame for Climategate? - Telegraph ", The Daily Telegraph , London, UK: Telegraph Media Group . Retrieved on 23 November 2011 .
- ↑ Connelly, Joel (2011 [last update]). Deniers of global warming harm us - seattlepi.com . seattlepi.com . Retrieved on 23 November 2011.
- ↑ Broder, John. " Climate-Change Debate Is Heating Up in Deep Freeze - NYTimes.com ", The New York Times , New York, NY: NYTC . Retrieved on 23 November 2011 .
- ↑ Koppelman, Alex (2011 [last update]). Breaking news: Despite global warming, snow still exists - Global Warming - Salon.com . salon.com . Retrieved on 23 November 2011.
- ↑ Fox's claim July temps 'challenge climate change' disputed by original source of data | Media Matters for America . mediamatters.org (2011 [last update]). Retrieved on November 23, 2011.
- ↑ Richard Siklos (2008-06-06). " The Web 2.0-defying logic of Drudge ", CNN . Retrieved on 2008-06-28 .
- ↑ Wallsten, Peter. New political era? Same as the old one - Los Angeles Times . www.latimes.com. Retrieved on 2009-02-07. “...well-known conservative warriors such as Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Matt Drudge...”
- ↑ Hansell, Saul (2008-06-16). " The Associated Press to Set Guidelines for Using Its Articles in Blogs - NYTimes.com ", www.nytimes.com . Retrieved on 2009-02-21 . "Drudge Report, run by the conservative muckraker Matt Drudge"
- ↑ Philip Weiss (2007). Watching Matt Drudge . New York Magazine. Retrieved on 2007-08-31.
- ↑ Salon.com . www.salon.com. Retrieved on 2009-04-14.
- ↑ Canadian reporter 'smeared' over Iraq coverage . Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) (2003-07-18). Retrieved on 2007-07-30.
- ↑ Drudge, Matt: "ABC News Reporter Who Filed Troops Complaint Story — Openly Gay Canadian", Drudge Report , July 16, 2003
- ↑ Antonia Zerbisias (2003). TV Man Is (Shock) Gay, And (Horror) Canadian . commondreams.org. Retrieved on 2007-07-27. Link is a courtesy link, original gone. The original article in the Toronto Times contained the quote "Drudge has some nerve, since he's a gay man himself" but they later retracted this .
- ↑ 19.0 19.1 William Conley Harris (2009). Queer externalities: hazardous encounters in American culture . SUNY Press, pp. 86–87. ISBN 1438427514.
- ↑ Bad Drudge-Ment . The Advocate (May 1999). Retrieved on 2011-11-24.
- ↑ Mike Signorile (2002-05-22). Spreading Drudge’s Sludge . New York Press. Retrieved on 2007-07-31.
- ↑ Mike Signorile (2004-01-13). [# Rapture, genocide and the Washington Times.]. New York Press. Retrieved on 2007-08-05.
- ↑ 23.0 23.1 Michelangelo Signorile (2003). Queer in America: sex, the media, and the closets of power . Univ of Wisconsin Press, p. 420. ISBN 0299193748.
- ↑ Brock, David. Blinded by the Right: The Conscience of an Ex-Conservative . Three Rivers Press. ISBN 978-1400047284.
- ↑ Kerry Lauerman (2002). The apostate . salon.com. Retrieved on 2007-07-27.
- ↑ Walls, Jeannette (2000). Dish: The Inside Story on the World of Gossip . William Morrow & Company. ISBN 978-0380978212.
- ↑ Jennifer Cox (2000). In gossip wars, Jeannette Walls wails: I've been Matt-slammed . Media Life Magazine. Retrieved on 2007-07-27.
- ↑ 28.0 28.1 Amy Reiter (2000). Egg on his chest? . salon.com. Retrieved on 2007-07-27.
- ↑ Doug Thompson (2004). Homophobia and the Republican Party . Capitol Hill Blue. Retrieved on 2007-07-27.
- ↑ Keith Stern (2009). Queers in history: the comprehensive encyclopedia of historical gays . BenBella Books, 147. ISBN 1933771879.
- ↑ Ellen Talks Back To Dr. Laura . www.nydailynews.com. Retrieved on 2009-03-05. “Washington D.C. landscaper David Cohen yesterday told us that Walls was correct in reporting that he dated Drudge in their early years”
- ↑ Bijou's Knife Jest Turns Bloody . www.nydailynews.com. Retrieved on 2009-03-05. “Walls writes that back when he was his 20s and living in Washington, D.C., Drudge "hung out with a crowd of promiscuous, openly gay men and dated several of them." Walls writes that Drudge used to date a guy named David Cohen, who contends that the future Web-slinger once got kicked out of bar for dousing everyone with beer and that he "seemed very comfortable and open with his sexuality, though they never talked about it."”
- ↑ Brett Sokol (2001). The Drudge Retort . Miami New Times. Retrieved on 2007-07-27.
- ↑ Baldwin-Drudge spat may lead to lawsuit . Media Life Magazine (2002). Retrieved on 2007-08-26.
- ↑ Howard Stern Show Archives . MarksFriggin.com (2002-08-05). Retrieved on 2007-08-26.
- ↑ Brandon Voss (2008). Alec Baldwin On Men, Love, & His Bible-Thumping Brother . The Advocate. Retrieved on 2008-10-31.
- ↑ Cosmo Landesman (2005-04-17). The world is his laptop . The Sunday Times Online. Retrieved on 2007-07-31.
- ↑ Gay Power List 2013: MATT DRUDGE . Out Magazine. Retrieved on 2013-07-21.
- ↑ 5thd Annual Power 50 . www.out.com. Retrieved on 2011-11-08.
- ↑ Amazon.com: All I Could Bare: My Life in the Strip Clubs of Gay Washington, D.C.: Craig Seymour . www.amazon.com. Retrieved on 2009-04-10.
- ↑ The Gist: Matt Drudge's Advice on Kissing Guys . www.signorile.com. Retrieved on 2009-09-21.
- ↑ How Matt Drudge Helped Nudge a Friend Out of the Closet - Matt Drudge - Gawker . gawker.com. Retrieved on 2009-09-15.
- ↑ Craig's Pop Life: What I Wrote About Matt Drudge . www.craigspoplife.blogspot.com. Retrieved on 2009-09-21.
- ↑ Homophobics May Be Hidden Homosexuals | Homophobia & Anti-Gay Sentiment | LiveScience . livescience.com (2012 [last update]). Retrieved on 10 April 2012.
- ↑ " Drudge gifts South Dade home to longtime housemate ", Miami Herald (2016-01-22) . Retrieved on 2016-05-16 .
- ↑ Polier, Alexandra (2004-06-07). John Kerry intern scandal - Alexandra Polier's account . New York Magazine. Retrieved on 2004-06-07.
- ↑ Special Reports Personal Collection. Drudge Report Archives. Retrieved on 2007-04-02
- ↑ Drudge, Matt (April 2, 2007). " McCain heckled by CNN reporter ", Drudge Report . Retrieved on 2007-04-02 .
- ↑ 49.0 49.1 " CNN's Ware flatly denies report that he "heckled" McCain, but right-wing media flog it anyway ", Media Matters for America (April 2, 2007) . Retrieved on 2007-04-02 .
- ↑ " CNN reporter slams Drudge's charge that he 'heckled' McCain; Exclusive video confirms his claim ", Rawstory (April 2, 2007) . Retrieved on 2007-04-02 .
- ↑ CNN's Ware fires back at Drudge report about 'heckling' , USA Today April 2, 2007
- ↑ UPDATE: CNN's Ware flatly denies report that he "heckled" McCain, but right-wing media flog it anyway . Media Matters (2007-04-02). Retrieved on 2007-08-09.
- ↑ 53.0 53.1 McCain volunteer admits to hoax . www.post-gazette.com. Retrieved on 2009-03-03. “One photo appeared on The Drudge Report on Thursday, setting off a storm of media attention.”
- ↑ Meg White. Ashley Todd, PA Racist Hoax "Victim," Was Paid Organizer for College Republican National Committee, Not a Volunteer . BuzzFlash.com. Retrieved on 2008-10-29.
- ↑ SHOCK: McCAIN VOLUNTEER ATTACKED AND MUTILATED IN PITTSBURGH - "B" carved into 20 yr old Woman's Face . Retrieved on 2008-10-23.
- ↑ 'Countdown with Keith Olbermann' for Friday October 24, 2008 - Countdown with Keith Olbermann- msnbc.com . www.msnbc.msn.com. Retrieved on 2009-03-03.
- ↑ McCain volunteer made up robbery story . Retrieved on 2008-10-24.
- ↑ McCain Campaign Pushed Now-Discredited Attack Story/publisher=TPM (2008-10-24).
Web: http://www.drudgereport.com 22651 SW 157th Ave/Newton Rd, Homestead Florida
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- WatchingAmerica.com – similar project
- " Matt Drudge ", Media Matters for America.
- David Brock: Blinded by the Right: The Conscience of an Ex-conservative (New York, NY: Three Rivers Press, 2002), ISBN 1400047285, pages 307-309.
- Sidney Blumenthal, " Why Kerry Should Sue the Sun ," Guardian (UK), February 19, 2004, discusses Drudge's false claims that Blumenthal was a wife-beater and that John Kerry had an affair with Alexandra Polier .
- Andrew Hearst, " Is AOL Responsible for Its Hip Shooter's Bullets? ", Columbia Journalism Review , November/December 1997.
- Denise Caruso, " The Law and the Internet: Beware ", Columbia Journalism Review , May/June 1998.
- Thomas Lang, " Drudge: The Ellipse as a Tool of Deception ", Campaign Desk, Columbia Journalism Review , January 15, 2004.
- Brian Montopoli, " The Drudge Report: The Gift That Keeps on Giving ", Campaign Desk, Columbia Journalism Review , May 18, 2004.
- Richard Pachter: " Linking News Sites, Matt Drudge Creates an Internet Success ", Miami Herald , September 1, 2003
- Drudge Report Archives (since Nov. 2001)
- Drudge Tracker - The top Drudge Report headlines of the past 2 weeks
Wikipedia also has an article on Matt Drudge . This article may use content from the Wikipedia article under the terms of the GFDL .
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The Drudge Report Has Been Linking To This Armenian Guy's Site Instead Of The New York Times
Drudge referred roughly 8 million views to the site since November.
BuzzFeed News Reporter
On Tuesday, New York Times columnist Kara Swisher revealed that a widower sent a personal letter to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey asking him to delete tweets from President Donald Trump about the man’s late wife. Trump had falsely implied that MSNBC host Joe Scarborough was involved in the death of the woman, who worked in his office when he was a member of Congress.
The Drudge Report, the venerable website run by Matt Drudge, soon featured the story.
But Drudge didn’t link to the New York Times. Instead, the site sent visitors to a copy-pasted version of the story on dnyuz.com, an obscure site filled with content plagiarized from publishers, including the Times, the Atlantic, Bloomberg, and the Financial Times, among others.
Since November, the links on the Drudge Report have sent roughly 8 million pageviews to the site, according to data from analytics service SimilarWeb . This has likely earned significant revenue for its owner, who has taken steps to hide their identity. The success of dnyuz.com is yet another example of how Google, which provides the ads that make the site's money, allows webpages that copy content from real publishers to reap ad dollars . At the same time, the news industry is hemorrhaging jobs and revenue .
A post on May 24 on the scammer-tracking site hucksters.net identified the site's owner as Hayk Karapetyan, a web developer living in Armenia. BuzzFeed News came to the same conclusion based on domain registration records, Domain Name System data, and dnyuz.com's use of the same Google AdSense ID number as other sites currently or previously owned by Karapetyan.
Neither Karapetyan nor Matt Drudge responded to requests for comment.
A Google spokesperson said it removed ads from dnyuz.com and terminated the associated AdSense publisher account after being contacted by BuzzFeed News.
“We have strict policies that govern what kind of content we place ads on and specifically prohibit content that is copied from other websites without adding any original value from monetizing,” the spokesperson said. “If we find a page or website that violates our policies, we take immediate action. In this instance, we’ve removed all Google Ads from the site.”
Domain records show that Karapetyan previously owned sites that republished articles from English-language outlets, including usnewz.com, newsfcanada.com, and uknewsy.com. These sites are no longer active, but he currently operates a1.am, an Armenian travel guide that used to be a news aggregator, and a related web design business .
The Drudge Report began linking to dnyuz.com as early as November 2019, according to data from SEMRush, a search analytics tool. The links have been a consistent presence on the site since. On April 30 and May 1, the Drudge Report linked to at least six articles on dnyuz.com that were plagiarized from the New York Times: a story about food banks, a column about Tara Reade, a look at tenants' issues during the pandemic, a story about Trump officials pushing for intelligence about the virus that paints China in a bad light, a story about Trump’s lack of grieving for COVID-19 victims, and a look at lockdowns in upstate New York.
Those stories received more than 300,000 views on dnyuz.com, according to stats listed on the articles’ pages. The biggest dnyuz.com hit appears to have been a plagiarized New York Times story about murder hornets, which Drudge linked to on May 2 and has received close to 500,000 views.
The Google spokesperson said the company's investigation did not identify any connections between the Drudge Report and dnyuz.com. BuzzFeed News also found no evidence that Drudge and Karapetyan are working together — or even know each other.
In his post about dnyuz.com , Jesse Nickles, the web developer who runs hucksters.net, said he thought that to avoid sending readers to paywalls, the Drudge Report often linked to versions of articles on sites that licensed the original story.
"In contrast, DNyuz appears to be merely scraping (copying) thousands of articles from hundreds of different original publishers, stripping out all bylines and photo credits, and then embedding his own advertising scripts into the pages,” Nickles told BuzzFeed News.
Last year, the Drudge Report left its longtime advertising partner, Intermarkets , for a newly formed company called Granite Cubed, which now calls itself Voranda. A company representative did not respond to a request for comment.
Contact Craig Silverman at [email protected] .
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Drudge Report, a Former Trump Ally, Looks to Biden
Matt Drudge and Donald Trump boosted each other four years ago. Now his site says, in prominent type, “The World Moves On.”
By Tiffany Hsu
Matt Drudge started showing signs that he had soured on President Trump months before the election. Since the vote, the fedora-topped media pioneer has seemed even more eager to distance himself and his site from the man in the White House.
“YOU’RE FIRED!” Drudge Report blared in a headline within minutes of CNN’s calling the election for Joseph R. Biden Jr. on Saturday. For nearly 24 hours afterward, that headline remained at the top of the site. In addition, a screenshot of the Drudge Report main page, with the “YOU’RE FIRED!” headline, has been the only tweet on the @DRUDGE Twitter account since Saturday.
In his 25-year career, Mr. Drudge has proved himself an expert aggregator, a digital journalist who links to articles plucked from the web. And he has done it with style, packaging his links with tabloid-poetry headlines that make readers click.
After the “YOU’RE FIRED!” headline, Drudge Report turned this week to the coming transfer of power.
THE WORLD MOVES ON.
Americans pivot from red-hot Trump to Biden’s seasoned cool.
Trump defied gravity; now falls back to earth, future TBD.
Dogs will return to White House: Biden’s German shepherds!
Four years ago, Drudge Report heralded Mr. Trump’s “rock-star welcome in Florida” and linked to coverage of his rallies. The journalist Carl Bernstein credited Mr. Drudge’s support as a key part of Mr. Trump’s political rise, and Mr. Trump called Mr. Drudge “a great gentleman.”
Drudge Report started distancing itself from the president last year, a development that was not lost on Mr. Trump, who said on Twitter in April: “I gave up on Drudge (a really nice guy) long ago, as have many others.” Conservative sites accused Mr. Drudge of being an agent of the left.
Now Drudge Report is filled with headlines that describe the outgoing president as “bitter” and “not a good loser.” Several links lead to articles debunking Mr. Trump’s baseless accusations of election fraud.
Mr. Drudge, who rarely gives interviews, did not reply to requests for comment. His recent work shows him ready to close the chapter on the current president and focus on the president-elect.
On Wednesday, his site included two lines of commentary — prominently displayed, in red type — that did not link to an external story and compared Mr. Biden favorably to the conservative hero Ronald Reagan.
Biden now up to 50.8 percent of popular vote, topping Reagan’s 50.7 percent in 1980 …
Is highest percentage for challenger since FDR in 1932 …
Tiffany Hsu is a media reporter for the business desk, focusing on advertising and marketing. Previously, she covered breaking business news. Before joining The Times, she wrote about the California economy for The Los Angeles Times. More about Tiffany Hsu
To revist this article, visit My Profile, then View saved stories .
- What Is Cinema?
Matt Drudge’s Impeachment: American Crime Story Debut and Strange Origin Story
By Julie Miller
Matt Drudge makes a dramatic debut in Impeachment: American Crime Story ’s third episode, “Not to Be Believed,” which premieres Tuesday night on FX. The character does not get an introduction so much as a down-and-dirty origin story. In the episode’s opening scene, set in 1995, Drudge (played by Billy Eichner ) manages the gift shop at CBS Studios. The character is lit and scripted like a screen villain—perhaps not surprising, given the show’s creators have said the true crime of Impeachment is the way Monica Lewinsky , Linda Tripp , and Paula Jones were maligned by media.
During the five-minute opening sequence, Drudge locks up the gift shop, throws on a trench coat, digs sensitive information out from a studio dumpster, and returns to his small, drab apartment to publish the biggest scoop of his career at that point: Jerry Seinfeld ’s negotiations for $1 million per episode. Three years later, Drudge would eclipse that news story with a political bombshell—breaking news of Bill Clinton ’s affair with a White House intern.
Ahead, a closer look at Drudge’s real-life beginnings and his role in making Clinton and Lewinsky’s affair the scandal spectacular that it became.
These days, Drudge is known for being a “mysterious media maven, conservative kingmaker, and arguably the most influential news aggregator in history,” according to a Vanity Fair feature last year. But in the early ’90s, his résumé was considerably less impressive.
Drudge grew up in the Maryland suburbs and graduated from high school 341st out of 355 students in 1984, according to Matthew Lysiak ’s The Drudge Revolution. While many of his peers went to college, Drudge spent the following years drifting aimlessly between jobs like 7-Eleven night manager, telemarketer, and McDonald’s team member.
“Drudge’s father ultimately changed his life,” wrote New York magazine in 2007. “After high school, [Drudge] drifted to his father’s hometown, Los Angeles, where he worked for years in the gift shop at CBS studios. Worried about his son’s aimlessness, Bob Drudge insisted on buying him a Packard-Bell computer in 1994. The Drudge Report began as an e-mail sent out to a few friends.”
The Drudge Report started taking off in March 1995, and Drudge’s “first big break came straight out of the garbage” while he was working at CBS Studios, according to The Drudge Revolution:
Matt had been searching through the trash cans on the ground-floor Xerox room when he discovered the previous day’s Nielsen ratings, not yet released to the public, discarded below piles of trash.… For Matt, it was information gold, even if he didn’t exactly know what to do with the pilfered information. Matt studied the schedule of the cleaning crew. He learned there was a short window of time in the morning after the Nielsen numbers were tossed into the garbage by the executive suits and before the crew would arrive to shred it. Matt took his dumpster-diving routine elsewhere—including to Daily Variety. He began posting the Nielsen ratings and other tidbits of information he learned on various internet newsgroups, including pilfering Friday night’s box office take for newly released movies, which he would release the very next day, ahead of the studios.
Tuesday’s episode also flashes back to a trip Drudge made to the capitol—which Jeffrey Toobin described in his book A Vast Conspiracy, on which Impeachment is based. The trip would include a fateful conversation with Newsweek reporter Michael Isikoff ( Danny A. Jacobs ), who was on the Clinton sexual harassment beat. While Drudge had been digging scoops out of the trash, Isikoff was operating on the opposite end of the reporting-morality spectrum—vetting sources and declining access to illegally recorded audio . Toobin writes:
In late June 1997, Matt Drudge visited Washington at a time when his celebrity was still rather modest. Two years earlier, Drudge had started posting various news items and gossip—mostly early reports of weekend movie grosses along with occasional news of show business contract disputes—on the fledgling World Wide Web. His popularity grew with that of the Internet, and Drudge soon developed a following in the tens of thousands, especially among journalists. Drudge wrote with a cranky anti-Clinton slant, but his juicy tidbits and old-time tabloid style made his intermittently reliable Drudge Report a must-read in political and media circles. By the time he toured Newsweek ’s offices, in the summer of 1997, he could promenade through them like a visiting dignitary. (On the same trip to Washington, Drudge was a guest of honor at a dinner thrown by the ubiquitous David Brock. ) In a conversation with Drudge at Newsweek, Isikoff accidentally confirmed that he was working on an article about a possible act of sexual harassment by the president in the White House.
By Anna Peele
By Anthony Breznican
By Savannah Walsh
In May 1997, The Washington Post formally introduced Drudge to the world in a profile entitled “The Dirt on Matt Drudge” :
He’s a one-man media machine, an obsessive gossip who cheerfully pleads guilty to occasional unethical behavior. He’s a 30-year-old Takoma Park native whose last job was managing the CBS gift shop in Studio City, Calif. He describes his gig this way: “I don’t have an editor. I can write whatever I want and 50,000-plus readers will see it within an hour.” Matt Drudge would be possible only in the age of Web-surfing. From a cluttered apartment near Hollywood and Vine, he cranks out a World Wide Web site called the Drudge Report (www.drudgereport.com), a strange brew of media, political and show biz tidbits that has drawn all kinds of fans in high places.
Though Drudge had a reputation for being hit-or-miss with its news breaks—he incorrectly reported that Microsoft was buying Netscape, and that Independence Day would bomb at the box office, according to The Drudge Revolution —he managed to break the Clinton affair news.
On January 17, 1998, Drudge published the story with the headline “NEWSWEEK KILLS STORY ON WHITE HOUSE INTERN:”
At the last minute, at 6 p.m. on Saturday evening, NEWSWEEK magazine killed a story that was destined to shake official Washington to its foundation: A White House intern carried on a sexual affair with the President of the United States! The DRUDGE REPORT has learned that reporter Michael Isikoff developed the story of his career, only to have it spiked by top NEWSWEEK suits hours before publication. A young woman, 23, sexually involved with the love of her life, the President of the United States, since she was a 21-year-old intern at the White House. She was a frequent visitor to a small study just off the Oval Office where she claims to have indulged the president's sexual preference. Reports of the relationship spread in White House quarters and she was moved to a job at the Pentagon, where she worked until last month. The young intern wrote long love letters to President Clinton, which she delivered through a delivery service. She was a frequent visitor at the White House after midnight, where she checked in the WAVE logs as visiting a secretary named Betty Curry, 57. The DRUDGE REPORT has learned that tapes of intimate phone conversations exist. The relationship between the president and the young woman become strained when the president believed that the young woman was bragging about the affair to others.
The story set off a full-on media frenzy around the Clinton White House on par with the press circus around Nixon’s Watergate scandal. Days later, The Washington Post , the Los Angeles Times and ABC radio followed with their own reporting that Kenneth Starr was investigating whether Clinton and his friend Vernon Jordan encouraged Lewinsky to lie to lawyers for Paula Jones about whether she had an affair with the president.
Incredibly, this was not the first time that Drudge scooped Isikoff. Drudge previously beat the Newsweek reporter to breaking the allegations that Clinton made advances towards another White House aide, Kathleen Willey. Speaking to press after breaking the Lewinsky-Clinton affair news, Drudge acknowledged his own controversial tactics in scooping Isikoff.
“There’s something in the culture of Washington where reporters share their stories, and now there’s an outlet, meaning me,” said Drudge. “Before we all talked about it, but who’s going to print it? … This thing just fell into my lap.”
The article not only opened the floodgates for political attacks, it also marked another important turning point. Per Toobin’s A Vast Conspiracy, “By launching the story into the public discourse via the Internet, Drudge’s post announced a fundamental reordering of our media hierarchies, a process that has only accelerated in subsequent years.”
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