The following was first published Nov. 8, 2019 by Angela Eckhardt under the title, “Dumping Drudge: Top 10 Conservative News Aggregators Reviewed”
Over the last year the love affair between conservatives and their go-to news aggregator Drudge Report has been on the rocks. In early 2018 Liberty Nation sounded the alarm that “using Drudge as your primary aggregator is not really very conservative after all. The Drudge Report is Numero Uno for referring traffic primarily to the rogue’s gallery of narrative-driven left-wing media outlets….”
In June 2019 Blaine Traber summarized Three Reasons the Drudge Report Is Awful: 1. Contrary to popular opinion, it’s not conservative; 2. They love mainstream media sources; and 3. The site is quietly becoming anti-Trump.
Recently the discontent with Drudge headline curation has reached fever pitch. The refrain, “What happened to Drudge?” now echoes across the Twitterverse. Last month, New American shared Creative Destruction Media‘s report that Drudge was losing traffic to Whatfinger, and concluded that Matt Drudge’s good investigative reporting in breaking the Lewinsky case didn’t mean he was grounded in ideological principles:
“…anyone not rooted to the eternal will sway with the ephemeral. This truth explains O’Sullivan’s First Law: ‘Any institution that is not explicitly right wing will become left wing over time,’ which itself likely explains Drudge. Not worshipping the timeless damns you to worshipping the times (and maybe even the New York Times!).
— Selwyn Duke, The New American
For those eager to replace Drudge Report, here are some excellent alternatives, many of which have complementary features that make them stand out from one another.
Rantingly – For those who enjoy the Drudge format in that it is relatively easy to digest in one sitting with curation that goes beyond simple display of newsfeeds and excludes duplicate headlines, Rantingly is a great place to start. It offers a comprehensive list of headlines, links to mainstream and right-leaning news sources, little to no ads/clickbait, top video of the day, selection of tweets, easy location to submit news tips and feedback, and the ability to load more content to go back through older headlines and tweets.
Whatfinger – This is a new heavy-weight of news aggregators with an overwhelmingly comprehensive display of curated news and opinion headlines, humor and video clips. It has an enjoyably personal insider’s tone, but be ready to spend a good chunk of time pouring through this massive collection of information. Thankfully, Whatfinger has integrity and does not reload the page every few minutes to inflate viewer count, so your computer can handle what Whatfinger has to offer.
Politipage – The best feature of Politipage might be its hugely valuable Spygate collection with timelines and background information detailing the many efforts to prevent/end the Trump presidency. Right next to that you’ll find handy contact information to reach your elected representatives in case you feel compelled to share. The site offers news feeds grouped by source for about 50 conservative news outlets, spread across four pages, with an additional page displaying mainstream media feeds.
Censored News – The most censored-but-legitimate media sources are front and center on Censored News. It displays news feeds organized by source for about 40 conservative news outlets, with some of the most silenced voices right at the top of the page. Mainstream news does not sully this site.
Gab Trends – Billed as People-Powered News from the freedom-focused tech innovators at Gab, the Gab Trends site curates news by displaying the stories that are most commented on each day through its Dissenter browser. Dissenter is Gab’s revolutionary creation unveiled this summer that allows anyone to comment on, upvote or downvote any web page throughout the Internet. Gab Trends gives viewers a snapshot of the votes and comments activity for each headline displayed. As more people pick up the Dissenter browser, Gab Trends will become an increasingly valuable resource of open-source news curation. [Update: In March 2020 Gab Trends launched a coronavirus updates command center.]
Bad Blue – This site is neat and readable with sources helpfully listed for each story, and it pulls in content from conservative sources as well as mainstream stories of interest to conservatives. It also offers a useful feature that allows the user to set the page view to display current, past 24 hours, past 7 days, or past month of news headlines. Feeds are not grouped by source, however, so mutliple headlines are repeated across the page making this site appear a bit disorganized.
Real Clear Politics – If political news is what you’re after, Real Clear Politics is your best bet. It offers major breaking news headlines aggregated on the left sidebar, with a central column that highlights news and opinion with author and source clearly listed and includes a morning edition listed separately, followed by featured videos. Extensive poll and favorability data are also displayed, along with a very useful searchable review of fact-checking sites.
The Liberty Daily – This very popular curated site offers extensive headlines often linking to conservative sources. It is heavy on advertisements with clickbait ad headlines mixed in to the news headlines, which is unfortunate but curated sites involve more labor than news feed displays, and ads pay the bills. The font choice and underlined headlines make the site slightly less readable, but again, the site’s curation choices make it worthwhile.
News Ammo – News Ammo offers a neat and clean display of news feeds organized by source, from 26 conservative-leaning media outlets, including a few that are more mainstream. It also displays the president’s tweets, which is a nice feature for those who aren’t on Twitter, as well as latest Fox News clips and Ben Garrison cartoons.
Citizen Free Press – Run by a former Lou Dobbs producer, Citizen Free Press offers a curated list of major news stories and video clips, as well as a display of their comments activity. Citizen goes beyond a simple reposting of exact headlines by often offering instead a succinct note of why the story matters, so the site is easier to pour through. It also isn’t marred by any advertisements, making it a user favorite for daily news briefings.
Finally, for all the complaints against Drudge Report, it is still an valuable resource — not for conservative news curation certainly, but for a snapshot of the non-conservative political zeitgeist. Use it to know what the mainstream media is peddling to the public, and then log in to your preferred social media and discussion forums, or downvote and comment on the linked pages through Dissenter to hold Drudge and friends accountable.
[Please note many, if not all, of these conservative news aggregator sites are suppressed due to shadowbanning, biased search algorithims and other means. You can help break through the censorship by sharing these links with others.]