Complaint from John Newby of

To whom this may concern:

This is a demand that you immediately cease and desist your defamatory action against Conservative Firing Line ( and immediately remove your false rating of my site.

I happened to come across this rating as I was doing research on NewsGuard and saw that you falsely claimed that you attempted to reach me through our contact page.

Bullshit.  I receive notifications from the contact page every day and I have never, ever seen anything from anyone at NewsGuard.

Second, You falsely claim that that we do not do original reporting.  More lies and bullshit.  Apparently your alleged “reviewers” were either too prejudiced or too damn lazy to do their job.  If you had actually bothered to look through the more than 11,000 posts you would have found a number of original stories.

You also whine that we present conservatives in a positive light while portraying liberals in a negative light.  Gee, perhaps the name of the site would give you a clue that this is a pro-conservative site.  We never professed to be middle-of-the-road and the last time I looked, we still have a right to our point of view.  There are times that we have presented liberal politicians in a positive light when they have said or done something we agree with.  Again, your lazy, prejudiced “reviewers” would have found this if they had actually gone through all 11,000+ published posts and they would have also found the instances in which we have issued updates.

From my perspective, this is a blatant attempt to deliberately spread defamatory information about our site in an effort to hurt us financially.

I have also contacted Microsoft about your browser app.

I hereby demand that you immediately cease and desist, remove and/or update your false rating, and do so in a timely manner, otherwise I will have no choice but to take legal action against you for libel.

You can, of course, respond to this with any questions you may have.

I look forward to hearing from you ASAP.

Joe Newby
Conservative Firing Line

NewsGuard’s Response:

We regret that Mr. Newby does not agree with our assessment that stories such as the ones our analysts saw about the Clintons’ alleged role in multiple assassinations, or links to a story about President Obama being in a “Muslim Brotherhood Mafia” and being a “dope fiend,” do not meet basic journalistic standards as outlined in our nine criteria. But that is the assessment we made in good faith.

With regard to whether the website does original reporting, we initially did not find what appeared to be the work of the website’s own reporters. However, Mr. Newby has subsequently pointed us to originally reported stories, and we have now corrected our description of the website’s content in the Nutrition Label above. We should add that this is one of the reasons we always contact a website’s proprietor before publishing anything at all that is negative—so that we can be pointed to something that we might have missed.

With that in mind, our records indicate that we sent three messages to the website’s contact line prior to publication of our rating and Nutrition Label (and we recalled a fourth effort although we do not have a written record of it) asking detailed questions and seeking detailed comment. If the website had listed a phone number or direct email contact, we would, of course, have attempted to use those means.