Calling Donald Trump a “sideshow,” The Huffington Post made a big deal this morning of its decision to no longer cover Trump’s presidential run on its “Politics” vertical, instead covering him in its “Entertainment” section.
But what difference does that make?
Trump stories still end up on the homepage, which is the most important real estate on the blog. Here’s what HuffingtonPost.com looked like when they broke the news of Trump’s exile:
Get the clicks, baby!
And here’s the top Trump story on the homepage as we write this post:
Summary: Trump is an “entertainment” story, but please click on it!
Admittedly, when you do click the link for “Donald Trump ‘Has Never Been A Fan’ Of The Huffington Post,” you are taken to their Entertainment section, but who cares about that? Readers saw the article promoted on HuffPo’s homepage, which is what’s important.
And the article itself was written by Paige Lavender, Senior Politics Editor. HuffPo may say Trump is “Entertainment,” but they’re covering him with political reporters. Why not pull the reporters covering Trump? That would at least show they’re serious.
But they’re not serious.
The Huffington Post vertical, @HuffPoPol, even tweeted out the “entertainment” story tonight:
The are more Trump stories on HuffPo’s homepage tonight, too. Stories that link to the “Latino Voices” page:
And to the “Weird News” page:
Trump is so popular with HuffPo readers, he even has his own “Big News” page:
Maybe a better question is, “what section won’t HuffPo use to cover Trump?”
Here’s another example. This article is in the Entertainment section, written by Senior Political Reporter Scott Conroy:
A political reporter who is being paid to follow Trump around the country:
Plus, stories that are about the GOP, including Trump, are in HuffPo’s Politics section. And the editors aren’t shy about using Trump’s image to get clicks, even on the Politics page:
As we get into the debates next month, the stories on Trump will be less about him as an individual and more about him and the other GOP candidates, making this exile to the Entertainment section even less relevant.
Maybe this will change as the Trump ban continues, but we doubt it.
Verdict: This is just a hissy fit that does absolutely nothing to change how HuffPo covers Donald Trump.