While President Donald Trump has often been at odds with the media, there’s one publication his administration seems particularly fond of: Breitbart News.
Breitbart is a right-leaning publication that was founded by Andrew Breitbart, who also cofounded The Huffington Post. Breitbart died in 2012 from heart failure, but one of his former Huffington Post cofounders, Jonah Peretti, remembers what he was like to work with.
Peretti spoke to Business Insider about his former colleague during an interview for our podcast, “Success! How I Did It.”
And according to Peretti, he loved being “a real internet troll.”
“He knew how to find the line that would cause all the different cultural cracks to explode and have people bang into each other,” Peretti said. “I think the continued trolling of massive parts of the population by Breitbart and the Trump administration would be something that Andrew would love.”
Here’s the portion of the Q&A with Business Insider Editor-in-Chief Alyson Shontell:
Alyson Shontell: “[Andrew Breitbart has] unfortunately since passed away, but you did have the chance to know him. He’s of course the founder of Breitbart, which seems to be one of the Trump administration’s favourite publications. What do you think he would make of what’s become of his publication, and what was he like?”
Jonah Peretti: “He was just bouncing off the walls at a million miles an hour, tons of ideas, lived on the internet kind of guy. It was challenging to work with him but also a lot of fun. He was at some level a real internet troll. He told me a story about how he was writing a headline on the Drudge Report about Chris Rock, and how he loves Chris Rock and thinks he’s hilarious, but the headline was like “Shock and Outrage: How could he host the Oscars when he makes all these inappropriate jokes?”
“He knew that he could write it exactly in a way that would cause socially-liberal conservatives to think it was funny and actual more family-values conservatives to be outraged. He knew how to find the line that would cause all the different cultural cracks to explode and have people bang into each other. He loved it. He loved that kind of thing.”
“I think the continued trolling of massive parts of the population by Breitbart and the Trump administration would be something that Andrew would love. I think he would have a more complex and nuanced view on Trump himself, and on policies and things like that. It’s hard to say have since he passed away several years ago now what his views on that would be, but the trolling part he would absolutely love.”
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