||This article appears to be written like an advertisement. (January 2013)|
|Founded||September 16, 1998|
|Founder(s)||Christopher W. Ruddy, CEO|
|Headquarters||West Palm Beach, Florida, USA|
|Key people||Ken Chandler, Editor in Chief for Newsmax magazine|
Newsmax Media, commonly called Newsmax, is a conservative American news media organization founded by Christopher W. Ruddy and based in West Palm Beach, Florida. It operates the news website Newsmax.com and publishes Newsmax magazine.
Ruddy started Newsmax.com on September 16, 1998, supported by a group of investors, including the family of the late Central Intelligence Agency Director William J. Casey. Later, Richard Mellon Scaife, Ruddy's former employer at the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review invested in the fledging company. One of the initial board members was author James Dale Davidson who edited a financial newsletter. Davidson's co-editor, Lord Rees-Mogg, former editor of The Times and Vice Chair of the BBC, later became chairman of Newsmax.
Other news figures who later joined the Newsmax board included Arnaud de Borchgrave, the longtime Newsweek chief correspondent who also serves as editor-at-large of UPI and Jeff Cunningham, former publisher of Forbes. Admiral Thomas Moorer, the former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and Chief of Naval Operations during the Vietnam War, also served as one of the company's founding board members. Former US Secretary of State and Nixon and Ford administration Chief of Staff, General Alexander M. Haig Jr. served as special adviser to NewsMax.
Ruddy aimed at creating an Internet news company by building a team of reporters. In August 2001, talk radio host Michael Reagan merged his monthly newsletter The Reagan Monitor with Newsmax Magazine and began writing a regular column for the publication.
In 2008, a profile in The Palm Beach Post on Newsmax and founder Ruddy indicated the company generated revenues of approximately $25 million per year, and, according to the company, has been profitable for the past five years. However, profiles of the website indicate an annual profit closer to $20 million. In a 2009 Forbes.com interview, Internet expert Nathan Richardson was asked to identify the "smartest thing on the web" today. Richardson identified Newsmax, among several websites, citing its success "monetizing the web."
In March 2009, Forbes ran a feature on Newsmax describing it as a "media empire" and the "great right hope" of the Republican Party. Forbes noted that after just a decade of operations it had become a "media powerhouse" - and had surpassed such well known websites as the Drudgereport in web visitors. According to the magazine, Newsmax draws 3.8 million unique visitors monthly. Political analyst Dick Morris was quoted as saying that Newsmax had become the "most influential Republican-leaning media outlet" in the nation.
In a January 2010 profile on the company, the Financial Times reported that the "Rise of Newsmax Defies the Media Trend" and said its website, Newsmax.com, is "one of the strongest conservative voices online". The paper said Newsmax had witnessed 40 percent growth rates per annum over the past decade and closed 2009 with $35 million revenues, up from $24 million the year before.
An April 2010 cover story for Talkers Magazine featured Newsmax as a model of future media companies called "Media Stations" that offer their audience audio, video, digital, and even print content.
A 2010 New York Post story reported that the paper's long-time former editor, Kenneth Chandler, was tapped as Newsmax Magazine's editor-in-chief. CEO Ruddy also told the Post the company expected annual 2010 revenues to exceed $50 million.
Starting in April 2013, Newsmax.com and its affiliated sites drew 14.4 million unique visitors, leading comScore's News/Politics category over such sites as The Huffington Post Politics, Fox News Politics, CNN Politics, NBCNews.com Politics, and Politico.com in monthly viewership for two consecutive months.
Reach and influence
Nielsen Online said Newsmax was the most trafficked conservative website with approximately 4 million unique visitors monthly. A 2010 study released by Nielsen reported that Newsmax.com was the number one site for conservatives in the U.S., making it one of the most influential conservative news sites in the nation. Alexa Internet statistics for Newsmax.com indicate that the readership consists mainly of Internet users over the age of 45, which aligns itself to the average age of Republican leaning voters, as gathered by The Pew Research Center.
A profile on Newsmax in The New York Times described the company as a "potent force" in U.S. politics and noted the company's headquarters had become a must stop for Republican candidates seeking the party's 2012 nomination.
The company has increasingly attracted national and international leaders to its West Palm Beach, Florida headquarters. Former President Bill Clinton, who describes Newsmax's CEO Ruddy as a friend, made headlines when he visited Newsmax's offices during the summer of 2010. When Sarah Palin stopped by the office for an interview, US News and World Report suggested the move was the clearest indication yet she was planning to run for President. According to the magazine, Newsmax is a major player in GOP politics, as seen during the 2012 primaries. Visitors have also included Rep. Michele Bachmann, Gov. Tim Pawlenty, Sen. John Thune, Gov. Haley Barbour, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, and former Sen. Rick Santorum, among others.
In addition to Newsmax.com, the company publishes Newsmax magazine, which the company describes as the nation’s "largest independent monthly with a conservative perspective." During 2011 the magazine’s ABC-audited circulation totaled approximately 215,000 paid subscribers, making it the largest conservative-leaning publication in the U.S., according to The New York Times. In November 2005, Newsmax magazine earned a Silver Eddie award in the News/Commentary category of the Eddies, the journalism awards presented by Folio Magazine in New York City.
After the mysterious disappearance of Chandra Levy in 2001, Newsmax.com contributor John LeBoutillier allegedly posted a speculative column on the site about the sex life of Rep. Gary Condit, with whom Levy had an affair. The column quickly circulated among media members, even though Newsmax editors pulled it from the site.
On May 26, 2000, Newsmax published an article claiming Hillary Clinton refused to meet with the Gold Star Mothers, a group that supports mothers whose children have died during military service. According to the Gold Star Mothers organization, this was false and "Senator Clinton greeted us graciously on Gold Star Mothers Sunday, 2005." This story was also debunked at other websites and eventually led to a retraction by NewsMax.
A 2005 NewsMax.com report about Senator Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania, claiming he was "teaming up" with rock band U2 for a fundraiser, gained considerable attention. Santorum had actually purchased 66 tickets to a sold-out show and was reselling these to campaign supporters at $1,000 per seat. The band issued a statement denying it was involved in the practice, saying, "U2 concerts are categorically not fund-raisers for any politician; they are rock concerts for U2 fans."
On August 9, 2007, Newsmax freelance reporter Jim Davis reported that Barack Obama was in attendance on July 22, 2007, during a controversial sermon given by Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr. at Trinity United Church of Christ in South Chicago, Obama's place of worship. The claim that Obama was in attendance for this particular sermon was repeated by Newsmax as fact again on March 16, 2008. A July 22, 2007, speaking schedule for the National Council of La Raza in Miami, Florida, shows Obama as a scheduled speaker for 1:30 pm. Video confirms he attended the conference and spoke during his allotted time. However, Davis later explained that Obama had attended the early morning service at Trinity United at 7:30 a.m., leaving sufficient time for him to travel by private jet to Miami; and the La Raza website confirmed that Obama did not arrive until 1:50 p.m. Eastern time. Newsmax reported receiving confirmation from the Obama campaign that the candidate's private jet did not leave Chicago until 8:50 a.m. A Washington Post fact checker has reported that the issue has not been resolved to his satisfaction one way or the other.
Newsmax claimed that Obama's Ambassador to the Holy See had been rejected several times for being "insufficiently pro-life". The Catholic News Service and Time magazine confirmed on April 9, 2009, that Newsmax's story was false.
Newsmax has a sizable stable of news correspondents and editorialists, including George Will, Kathleen Parker, Lanny Davis, and Alan Dershowitz. Newsmax regulars include Christopher W. Ruddy, David Limbaugh, Ben Stein, Steve Malzberg, Susan Estrich, Dr. Laura Schlessinger and Michael Reagan.
Besides political commentaries, Newsmax publishes The Blaylock Wellness Report in which Dr. Russell Blaylock provides information regarding choices in food, drugs, nutritional supplements and other health remedies, as well as denouncing vaccines, blood pressure medicine, and aluminum cookware. Additional newsletter publications of Newsmax include The High Income Factor, Goldstock Adviser and Financial Intelligence Report, as well as Dr. Brownstein's Natural Way to Health, and the The Mind Health Report.
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