The Washington Post lashed out on Friday with an article claiming that Matt Drudge regularly links to so-called Russian propaganda.
The Post’s Philip Bump first notes that the Drudge Report was the second most visited site online by July 2016, citing a SimilarWeb study.
Bump then specifies that in July 2016, the month of the Republican and Democratic presidential conventions, “SimilarWeb estimates that Drudge had 1.4 billion page views. Bump tries to shock his readers with the Drudge Report’s popularity, noting that’s “the equivalent of 47 views of the Drudge Report every second of every minute that month.”
He then goes on to attempt to establish a connection between the Drudge Report and Russian propaganda, by sharing information on Drudge links to the sites Infowars, RT, and Sputnik.
From The Washington Post:
DrudgeReportArchives captures an image of the Drudge Report every two minutes, as it has for 16 years. We ran a script that checked the first update to Drudge Report after 9 a.m. on every day of the past decade, counting the number of times Drudge linked to Infowars, RT or Sputnik. Over that period, excluding the two standing links to Infowars, we tallied more than 1,000 links to those sites […]
There are probably two reasons that the Drudge Report linked to these sites with regularity. The first is that Drudge’s taste in news often tends toward the more exotic; he clearly understands the sorts of things that people like to read. The other is that Drudge himself seems to share some of the same sense of impending apocalypse and systemic collapse that undergirds a lot of the reports from these sites.
By the Washington Post’s own admission, however, Drudge’s links to Infowars, RT, and Sputnik remained constant from 2014 until the Presidential election. Drudge regularly links to Washington Post itself with far greater frequency.
In response, the site’s founder Matt Drudge took to Twitter on Monday to point that out.
“I’ve linked to @washingtonpost over 10,00X in 25 years,” Drudge tweeted. “[…] Not even a thank you. Instead: YOU’RE A RUSSIAN OPERATIVE!”
I’ve linked to @washingtonpost over 10,000X in 25 years of doing DRUDGEREPORT. I currently give them 37% of their referral traffic, according to https://t.co/ryZX1supbD. It’s a brutal business. Not even a thank you. Instead: YOU’RE A RUSSIAN OPERATIVE! https://t.co/pFjPYxkzqa
— MATT DRUDGE (@DRUDGE) November 13, 2017
The Blaze reports:
Drudge was clearly not pleased with The Post’s insistence that the successful site shared Russian propaganda.
He shared the article on his Twitter feed Monday and said that the Post — which receives 37 percent of its referral traffic from the Drudge Report, Drudge stated — couldn’t even spare a “thank you.”
A link to the Post story is live on the Drudge Report’s homepage and reads, “Wash Post: Drudge Links to Russians! [And to Wash Post].
Matt Drudge also changed his Twitter profile pic to one of him seated on a park bench reading the Washington Post.
The Post’s petty accusations are just that, and the Post completely disregard the inconvenient fact that if Drudge is a “Russian operative,” then he’s a Washington Post operative. He does give them 37% of their referral traffic after all, for which they are entirely ungrateful.