The Drudge Report has a Lean Right AllSides Media Bias Rating™.
Table of Contents
- Drudge Report Rated Lean Right in Aug. 2018 Editorial Review
- UCLA Study on Drudge Report finds Center/Lean Left Bias Due to Aggregation
- Third-Party Accusations of Bias
- Drudge Report's Audience
- About Drudge Report
Drudge Report Rated Lean Right in Aug. 2018 Editorial Review
Drudge Report was given a Lean Right AllSides Media Bias Rating following an Editorial Review in August 2018.
Despite its reputation as being very right/conservative, the AllSides panel noted that the Drudge Report regularly features news stories that are mostly being covered by outlets AllSides rates on the left. The panel found that the Drudge Report often aggregated stories from outlets we rated as Left or Lean Left at the time of review, including The Huffington Post, The Washington Post, NBC, and more. While the Drudge Report did feature news stories and articles from sources on the left, it also featured lots of stories from sources with a Right, Lean Right, or Center AllSides Media Bias Rating™, including Fox News, The Wall Street Journal, and Breitbart.
In fact, upon first looking at the Drudge Report, at least one member of the AllSides panel initially thought that the Drudge Report might warrant a Lean Left or Center bias rating. This initial instinct is consistent with a 2005 UCLA study which found the Drudge Report has a Lean Left media bias; read more about that study here.
The AllSides editorial panel noted that the Drudge Report often uses sensational stories or language in its headlines and the stories it chooses to feature. Some members of the AllSides panel expressed concerns about the Drudge Report publishing sensationalist or fake news.
UCLA Study on Drudge Report Finds Center/Lean Left Bias Due to Aggregation
A 2005 UCLA study found that Drudge Report has a center/lean left bias, due to the website aggregating news from other media outlets. The study's lead author was Tim Groseclose, formerly UCLA faculty and currently Adam Smith Chair at George Mason University's Mercatus Center.
The study authors wrote (emphasis ours):
Another result, which appears anomalous, is not so anomalous upon further examination. This is the estimate for the Drudge Report, which at 60.4, places it approximately in the middle of our mix of media outlets and approximately as liberal as a typical Southern Democrat, such as John Breaux (D-LA). We should emphasize that this estimate reflects both the news flashes that Matt Drudge reports and the news stories to which his site links on other web sites. In fact, of the entire 311 think-tank citations we found in the Drudge Report, only five came from reports written by Matt Drudge. Thus, for all intents and purposes, our estimate for the DrudgeReport refers only to the articles to which the Report links on other web sites. Although the conventional wisdom often asserts that the Drudge Report is relatively conservative, we believe that the conventional wisdom would also assert that—if confined only to the news stories to which the Report links on other web sites—this set would have a slant approximately equal to the average slant of all media outlets, since, after all, it is comprised of stories from a broad mix of such outlets.
Previous AllSides Media Bias Ratings™ for Drudge Report
Third-Party Accusations of Bias
The Drudge Report has been criticized in the past for running stories that were hoaxes, poorly sourced, or unfactual, including a theory that Barack Obama was not a U.S. citizen, a hoax about a former prostitute who claimed her son was fathered by Bill Clinton, and a false statement that an undocumented immigrant started the October 2017 Northern California wildfires.
Drudge Report's Audience
According to a 2014 Pew Research study, the clear majority of Drudge Report's audience (74%) is right-of-center (by comparison, 26% of all Pew panelists were right-of-center). 8% of Drudge Report's audience is left or left-of-center (compared with 38% of all respondents to the survey). Roughly 18% of Drudge Report's audience holds political values consistent with the political center or exhibit mixed values (compared with 36% of all panelists).
About Drudge Report
Drudge Report is a news aggregation website. Run by Matt Drudge with the help of Joseph Curl and Charles Hurt, the site consists mainly of links to stories from the United States and international mainstream media about politics, entertainment, and current events, as well as links to many columnists. Occasionally, Drudge authors new stories himself based on tips. The Report originated in 1996 as a weekly subscriber-based email dispatch. It was the first news source to break the Monica Lewinsky scandal to the public after Newsweek decided not to publish the story.
Drudge met Andrew Breitbart in Los Angeles during the 1990s and became his mentor, with Breitbart later helping to run the Drudge Report.