Three members of the Breitbart News team joined the Heritage Foundation’s bloggers briefing today to promote their website in Washington D.C. and to share their views on conservative media.
Breitbart Editor Joel Pollak explained that although he initially came to Washington D.C. as a “raging, raving, left-wing lunatic” in college, he gradually trended towards conservatism because of the powerful ideas that the movement offered.
Those ideas, he explained, are a powerful way to communicate with other people about the important issues of the day.
“I think if we always remember that there are always people to convince, it helps us shape what we are doing,” Pollak said, acknowledging that bloggers and new media writers would always be snarky and share some level of disdain for the mainstream media.
“There is a lot of competition in the conservative new media space which is a good thing,” Pollak said. “We’re pushing each other to be better.”
Pollak praised conservative media for their increasing interest in breaking news online, not just focusing on news commentary or media criticism.
Breitbart’s Ben Shapiro took a more bellicose tone, declaring that Breitbart News writers would challenge not only the existing mainstream media for their biased coverage, but also the newer online outlets.
“You’ll notice that on our video site we don’t tend to care so much about MSNBC, because MSNBC is pretty open about the fact that they are left wing,” he said. “We do however care about Politico and we will smack Politico across the face as often as humanly possible.”
Shapiro added that other websites like Buzzfeed “hide behind this patina of entertainment in order to promote a left-wing agenda.”
Managing Editor Alex Marlow explained that the Breitbart team was familiar with criticism especially from liberals in the mainstream media citing a familiar sense of “hostile intimidation” from the institutional left.
He also theorized that the news website’s location in Los Angeles distanced them from the pitfalls of the Washington D.C. media culture where many journalists tend to get along.
“If you are a conservative journalist, you are probably going to run in the same circles so there’s pressure to make nice with them , to be friends, to get invited to cocktail parties,” Marlow explained. “We’ve thrown that out the window at Breitbart and you notice that that rejection really pisses off the people that keep attacking us over and over again.”
Marlow added that their critics would hold them to a higher standard as a result of their hostile attitude.
“The downside with that is that is they double down, they try to hold us to a higher standard than they hold themselves,” he explained.
Marlow explained that he didn’t mind the increased scrutiny.
“Andrew always had this attitude, ‘Bring it on!’ and I think that everyone in this room should have it as well,” he added.