WorldNetDaily's latest warning of an "existential threat" appears to have had the desired effect: It seems to have raised most or all of the $100,000 it claims it needed by the end of January to stay in business.
WND editor Joseph Farah started his Jan. 11 column with a ridiculous "It's A Wonderful Life" analogy, then declared: "Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! I never realized I had so many friends – real friends, the kind that rush to your side when you’re in trouble. We thank God for you – and you are the answer to my fervent, tear-filled-eyes, on-my-knees prayers." He added, "Elizabeth and I could have cashed out when times were good, retired with millions of dollars in the bank and enjoyed our old age together. But we had a mission – to seek the Truth with a capital T, to bring you the news the fake media wouldn’t and to do it all within a Judeo-Christian worldview."
A Jan. 15 email by Farah to WND's mailing list expanded on the reasons it claims are "the primary causes of our situation":
- There was a day, not long ago, when every time WND broke news you could find it high atop the Google search results. But Google continuously alters its search algorithms specifically to penalize independent news operations like WND. That negatively impacts traffic and revenues. Google also is the gateway to most advertising dollars on the Net. You could say, without exaggeration, it operates like a monopoly driven by left-wing political and cultural activism. I can’t even remember the last time I saw a powerful, exclusive WND story ranked on Google’s news pages.
- Likewise, Facebook drives enormous amounts of traffic – but its owners don’t like driving it to sites like WND. Imagine trying to compete in a game where the rules keep changing specifically to put you at a disadvantage. That’s what Google and Facebook do to WND and other independent news sources.
- And, as everyone knows, Amazon, the owners of the Washington Post, has gobbled up much of the e-commerce business not only nationally, but internationally. For 20 years, WND relied on its own e-commerce business to sustain us. Yet, the reality is, month by month, Amazon grabs a bigger percentage of all retail e-commerce activity.
Farah is silent on what may very well be the actual cause of WND's situation: It doesn't care about the truth. It's not trusted, and it's not credible. We've recounted the false, misleading and utterly fake news WND has published in just the past few years. It does not tell the truth, in either the uppercase or lowercase varieties. It can't even be bothered to do something so simple and logical as to renounce Paul Nehlen, an author it published and promoted who has since been revealed to have white nationalist and anti-Semitic sentiments.
That complete lack of credibility is directly linked to the first two problems Farah cites. Google is not ranking WND highly not because it's "independent" but because it's not trustworthy. Same for Facebook driving traffic elsewhere. It's telling that even with Facebook's problems with promoting fake news, WND couldn't get a toehold.
Still ignoring those credibility problems, Farah says he needs more money:
We have some exciting plans we want to launch – a redesigned website that is innovative and blazingly responsive, blockbuster investigative reporting projects that take time and money, as well as cost-savings that better technology can bring us. But everything costs.
I waited too long to ask for your help a week ago. I don’t want to make that mistake again. So, this week, I’m coming back to our friends and partners with a new two-week campaign to raise another $125,000. We’ve been blessed with an abundance of one-time donations in amounts ranging from $3 to $1,000. And those are ever so helpful. But for those able to make a longer term commitment to WND, I’m asking for you to become a sustainer of WND with monthly contributions. It would only take 1,000 people making a $100 monthly commitment to get us where we need to go – or 4,000 people making a $25 monthly commitment. Don’t worry, you can cancel any time if your personal financial situation changes.
Can you be one of those partners?
Unless and until Farah can prove WND is worthy of being saved -- by apologizing for WND's legacy of fake news and publicly distancing itself from Paul Nehlen, to name just two easy things that would go a long way toward proving that -- readers should be wary of offering support.