The Western Journal
|Owner(s)||Liftable Media, Inc.|
|Headquarters||Phoenix, Arizona, U.S.|
The Western Journal, previously known as Western Journalism, is an American conservative news and politics website based in Phoenix, Arizona. It was founded by political consultant Floyd Brown in 2008.
The site was acquired by Liftable Media, Inc. in 2014, which also owns the political opinion websites Conservative Tribune and Liberty Alliance, and the human-interest website Liftable.com. It also owns and provides content to dozens of conservative Facebook pages.
In a 2016 story on how fake news spreads on social media, The Intercept reported that "Thanks to views sourced largely to referrals from Facebook, Brown's websites now outrank web traffic going to news outlets such as the Wall Street Journal, CBS News, and NPR, according to data compiled by Alexa".
The company changed its name in 2018 to The Western Journal, hired trained copy editors, and introduced a corrections page. The New York Times reported in 2019 that the site had more than 36 million readers and followers on Facebook.
Western Journalism previously stated it featured "conservative, libertarian, free market and pro-family writers and broadcasters" and seeks to provide "God-honoring" content. In practice, according to The New York Times, this philosophy, in which "tradition-minded patriots face ceaseless assault by anti-Christian bigots, diseased migrants and race hustlers concocting hate crimes," results in "a torrent of sensationalized, misleading, or entirely made-up stories, often aimed at Muslims and immigrants." Because of negative rulings by fact-checking sites and user trust surveys, Western Journalism was blacklisted by Google and Apple News, and by 2017 its Facebook traffic declined to near zero.
In February 2019, The Western Journal published an article which alleged "Climate Change 'Heat Records' Are a Huge Data Manipulation." Scientists criticized the article, saying it was deceptive and that it contradicted existing research. The Western Journal subsequently retracted the article.
In November 2021, a study by the Center for Countering Digital Hate described The Western Journal as being among "ten fringe publishers" that together were responsible for nearly 70 percent of Facebook user interactions with content that denied climate change. Facebook disputed the study's methodology.
- "About The Western Journal". The Western Journal. Retrieved November 6, 2021.
Politically, The Western Journal advocates for broadly conservative positions on most issues
- Dagnes, Alison (2019). "Negative Objectives: The Right-Wing Media Circle and Everyone Else". In Dagnes, Alison (ed.). Super Mad at Everything All the Time. Super Mad at Everything All the Time: Political Media and Our National Anger. Springer International Publishing. pp. 167–217. doi:10.1007/978-3-030-06131-9_5. ISBN 9783030061319.
- Krohn, Jonathan (December 6, 2016). "Floyd Brown has spent decades manipulating media, from the Willie Horton ad to Conservative Tribune".
- "About Floyd Brown". Western Journal.
- "Liftable Media Announces Acquisition Of TPNN, Tea Party News Network" (Press release). Liftable Media. September 2, 2015. Archived from the original on September 4, 2018.
- Vandervort, Miranda. "Liftable.com - Lift The Best, Leave The Rest".
- Confessore, Nicholas; Bank, Justin (August 21, 2019). "In the Trump Era, a Family's Fight With Google and Facebook Over Disinformation". The New York Times. Retrieved August 22, 2019.
- "Westernjournalism.com Traffic and Demographic Statistics by Quantcast".
- Lee Fang (November 26, 2016). "Some Fake News Publishers Just Happen to Be Donald Trump's Cronies". The Intercept.
- "About". Western Journalism. Archived from the original on March 15, 2015.
- "Western Journal op-ed deceives readers with completely unsupported claims". Climate Feedback. February 26, 2019. Retrieved May 18, 2019.
- Porterfield, Carlie (November 2, 2021). "Breitbart Leads Climate Change Misinformation On Facebook, Study Says". Forbes. Retrieved November 3, 2021.
- "The Toxic Ten: How ten fringe publishers fuel 69% of digital climate change denial". Center for Countering Digital Hate. November 2, 2021. Retrieved November 3, 2021.