Former President Donald Trump recently took to his Truth Social and posted the following:
“Something happened, but when Drudge went anti-Trump, the site fell apart, very much like Ron DeSanctus. It happened instantly, without notice, but I believe I know the reason why. Drudge had a big moment, but now it’s gone—Never to resurface again. It is totally irrelevant! That often happens when people cover “TRUMP” unfairly. I love it!”
Something happened, but when Drudge went anti-Trump, the site fell apart, very much like Ron DeSanctus. It happened instantly, without notice, but I believe I know the reason why. Drudge had a big moment, but now it’s gone—Never to resurface again. It is totally irrelevant! That…
— Donald J. Trump Posts From His Truth Social (@TrumpDailyPosts) December 3, 2023
For years, the Drudge Report drove conservative media news cycles. If Drudge was talking about it, you could bet everyone from Rush Limbaugh to Fox News to PJ Media was also discussing it.
There was a symbiotic relationship between Drudge’s aggregated links and the pages of most conservative media outlets. Pretty much everyone was either getting story ideas from Drudge or sending him stories, hoping he’d link them.
A Drudge link day was always a good one for a website. In the early days of PJ Media, before we had the sophisticated technology we do now, a link would crash our servers. Back then, our tech guys would get an email alert anytime we got a Drudge link so they could fortify our site against the barrage of people swarming to read our stories.
For a few years, Drudge links made up a rather large percentage of traffic to our site. We’d get a link every day or two. Sometimes multiples. A link at the top of the page, “above the fold,” could bring in hundreds of thousands of readers—and no small amount of revenue.
Matt Drudge, who was reportedly apolitical and more interested in the success of his site than any agenda, decided to tank the site. A comparison of Similiar Web (a site that ranks websites based on various metrics) shows that Drudge was listed as #41 in the nation with 164 million visits in October 2018. Currently, the site ranks at #145, with 51 million visits in October 2023. That’s a major, major drop.