When Arianna Huffington started the Huffington Post, no one thought the website would be anything special, certainly not anything to rival Matt Drudge’s dominance. But HuffPo, as its known on the interwebs, hit its stride during the failing Bush administration and became a true force to be reckoned with. It now seems to be the influential force it always wanted to be, especially with the Obama administration.Drudge is really no match for this vocal site of liberals. Enter FoxNation.It isn’t enough that Fox News had all of their talking heads doing whatever it is they do on air, they now see that internet chatter is where it’s at and they’re about to take a big bite out of the available web space. FoxNation versus Huffington Post? That will be something to see.FoxNation plans on giving conservatives another voice. Drudge just beams the headlines and with HuffPo to contend with, longer opinion pieces are what’s called for. A marriage between the two?”In simple terms, it’s kind of Drudge meets Huffington Post,” Joel Cheatwood, senior vice president at Fox News Channel, told the AP’s Jake Coyle, going on to say that “It’s a chance for us to leverage some of the incredible opinion talent that we have, and really tap into a fan base that I think is more passionate than just about any other fan base in media.” He is dead on the money. Drudge isn’t popular because his content is necessarily the best on the web. Sure, it’s dramatic and entertaining in its own way, but what brings people back are the not-silent-anymore-majority, who are sick of the liberals moving in and setting up shop online. There will be commentary, blogs, videos and Fox News’ “network personalities.” People like Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck, and Greta Von Susteren. It will likely do something similar to what Huffington Post does in inviting other prominent bloggers to join in, and believe me, there isn’t a shortage of them online. There are an equal number of fervent right wing bloggers.FoxNation is going to get a fight, however. Part of the lure of online communication is the “nothing to lose” aspect of it. Because of this, it often gets dirty and mean pretty quickly. They will be encountering a lot worse than the kind of feedback they get from the news channel. But they are also going to centralize their power and in so doing, motivate a shaken party. FoxNation will draw a strong readership not just from those who watch FoxNews, but those who deliberately don’t; it will succeed, though, if it finds it own way out from underneath the news network. It must become like the Huffington Post, a force to be reckoned with. Many web start-ups are doing just fine, even though the web already felt crowded. It is the kind of world where there is always going to be room for the new, wherever it may come from.
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