Right-wing media outlets are booming in the Trump era: report
Right-wing media outlets have traditionally experienced their biggest growth when a Democrat was in the White House. Many far-right outlets knew how to turn fear-mongering over President Bill Clinton in the 1990s or President Barack Obama in the late 2000s/early 2010s into major advertising revenue. But in a report for Axios, Sara Fischer explains that some right-wing outlets have been enjoying substantial growth under a Republican president: Donald Trump.
Citing a Columbia Journalism Review analysis of right-wing websites using Comscore data, Fischer reports that RedState, the Washington Times and the Washington Examiner are among the outlets that have been thriving during the Trump era. Those sites, Fischer notes, “are experiencing major growth by widening their coverage. Their goal is to cover whatever is capturing the world’s attention that day, from human interest stories to trending entertainment developments.”
Fischer notes that although the right-wing Weekly Standard folded in late 2018, other websites on the right continue to “rank high” in terms of “engagement on Facebook” — and Fox News, according to Fischer, remains “the #1 news site on Facebook” in 2019 “in terms of reader engagement,” according to the analytics company Newswhip.
Podcasts that have been thriving in the Trump era, Fischer reports, include “The Joe Rogan Experience” and “The Ben Shapiro Show.” Shapiro, she points out, has “built a megabrand aimed at targeting younger conservatives.”
Fischer stresses, however, that although “conservative media remains strong across most major media platforms,” some “left-leaning outlets” — including HuffPost — “rank highly” in the Trump era. But Trump’s presidency and the 2020 election, she writes, continue to benefit right-wing media.
“Typically, the opposition party has a media explosion in response to whichever political group is in power,” Fischer reports. “But the economic stress of the media industry, combined with the Trump-driven conservative strategy of broad messaging, has upended that dynamic.”