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Molly Butler / Media Matters

Research/Study Research/Study

Google’s ad network is driving and monetizing traffic to the fringe video-sharing platform Rumble

Rumble is a safe haven for QAnon-supporting shows, election deniers, and other far-right extremists banned from mainstream platforms

Fringe video-sharing platform Rumble has risen to prominence in right-wing media circles by attracting far-right content creators pushing extremism, misinformation, and conspiracy theories. A new analysis has found that despite Rumble’s extremism, Google’s ad network is driving traffic — and new users — to the platform, while also monetizing some of its traffic.

Launched in 2013, Rumble has cast itself as a conservative alternative to Google-owned YouTube and gained the financial backing of prominent conservatives, including billionaire Peter Thiel, Ohio Senate candidate J.D. Vance, and Fox News host Dan Bongino. The platform, which has been described by founder Chris Pavlovski as providing infrastructure that is “immune from cancel culture,” has become a home for users who have been convinced by right-wing politicians and media personalities that they are being unfairly targeted and censored on Facebook, even though such claims have been repeatedly debunked

A new analysis of the platform by Media Matters has found that Rumble is hosting scores of far-right pundits who have been banned from mainstream platforms, including Bongino, former Trump aide Steve Bannon, white nationalist Stew Peters, and bigoted social media influencer Andrew Tate. Rumble also hosts state-run media outlet RT earning millions of views livestreaming Russian propaganda, QAnon-supporting shows with over 1.7 million combined subscribers, election deniers who push conspiracy theories to millions of subscribers, and accounts that earn millions of views on videos with COVID-19 and vaccine misinformation.

  • Rumble earns roughly 50 million monthly U.S. visits and Google’s ad network is helping to drive and monetize some of that traffic

  • Despite its extreme user base, a Dewey Square analysis of data from traffic analytics company Similarweb found that Rumble has had 622 million visits in the last year (from October 2021 through September 2022), which is roughly 52 million monthly visits on average. 

    The analysis also found that Google’s ad network is helping to drive traffic to the fringe platform, including new users, and even monetizing those visits. In fact, nearly 48% of U.S. display ad traffic driving users to Rumble came from Google Display Network ads. Here is an example of a display ad that Rumble used to drive new traffic to its platform:

  • Rumble Google Ad
  • Once users visit Rumble, Google Display Network also helps monetize those visits and send users to other fringe right-wing sites. Rumble has announced they would be migrating to their own internal ad system in the future, but currently rely on Google as a source of ad revenue.

    Dewey’s analysis found that nearly 73% of all U.S. display ad traffic Rumble sent to other sites in the past year used Google Display Ad network, utilizing the network to monetize Rumble visits and send traffic to other sites. Fringe right-wing platforms including Telegram, BitChute,, Odysee, Locals, Minds, and Gab were among the 25 sites with the most traffic from ads on Rumble in the past year. All of these sites used Google’s display ad network to drive traffic to their sites during the time period examined and/or used the network to monetize their sites.

    According to an analysis of data from Pathmatics, a company that tracks digital marketing data, Google’s ad network made up 2% of total advertiser spending on in the last year, but earned 18% of ad impressions.

  • Extremist figures banned on mainstream platforms have moved to Rumble

  • Dan Bongino

    In September 2020, right-wing podcaster and Fox News host Dan Bongino announced that he had acquired an equity stake in Rumble and would be directing his massive following to join him on the platform. His announcement came after YouTube prevented him from earning ad revenue from its site. At the time he told the right-wing Washington Examiner that “YouTube is crushing conservative voices,” and that he wasn’t “going to sit around and take their bullshit anymore.” In January, after Bongino continued to share misinformation about COVID-19 on his YouTube channel, he was banned from uploading to the site altogether.

    Bongino now freely shares misleading and false commentary about COVID-19, the 2020 election, and the FBI’s search of Mar-a-Lago to his over 2.4 million Rumble subscribers. He has also posted interviews with other extreme figures such as QAnon supporter Michael Flynn and disgraced former Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani.

  • Bongino Rumble Subscribers
  • Steve Bannon

    Far-right extremist Steve Bannon was banned from YouTube shortly after the January 6 insurrection, hours after Rudy Giuliani appeared on an episode of his War Room podcast claiming that the Democrats were responsible for the Capitol siege.

    Bannon now uploads videos of his podcast to Rumble, where he has over 800,000 subscribers. Some of his most-viewed content includes an interview in which right-wing conspiracy theorists push false claims, including Robert Malone, who falsely claimed that the COVID-19 vaccine causes the virus to be “more infectious” and that “we have to stop the vaccine campaign,” and Darren Beattie, who falsely claimed that the January 6 committee is “not interested in the core, central questions that get to the bottom of what really happened on January 6” and is putting on “a show trial.”

    There is also a November 2021 video, during which Real America’s Voice field correspondent Ben Bergquam celebrated a border wall in New Mexico: “The wall is working, the wall that ‘we the people’ built.” (Last month, The Washington Post reported that New York state charged Bannon “with money laundering, fraud and conspiracy” for misleading donors with his “‘We Build the Wall’ fundraising scheme.”)

    Each of these videos has well over 2 million views.

  • Bannon popular Rumble videos
  • Stew Peters

    White nationalist podcaster Stew Peters was banned from Spotify in late 2021 after sharing egregious COVID-19 conspiracy theories, including outlandish claims that the vaccine is a “military bio-weapon” that contains metallic parasites, and that hospitals are giving unvaccinated patients lower levels of care. In an interview with the The Daily Beast, he fearmongered that Spotify is “the propaganda arm of the communist, globalist genocidal machine, hellbent on the destruction of freedom, Christianity, and truth.” 

    Peters now shares videos to Rumble, where his main channel has more than 436,000 subscribers. His most viewed video — with over 4 million views — is a COVID-19 conspiracy theory film titled Watch the Water, which, as PolitiFact summarized, “ridiculously claims that the coronavirus is not a virus, but a synthetic version of snake venom that evil forces are spreading through remdesivir, the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines and drinking water to ‘make you a hybrid of Satan.’” 

    His 10 most-viewed videos all feature extreme COVID-19 conspiracy theories. Collectively, these videos have been viewed more than 21 million times.

  • Watch the Water on Rumble
  • Andrew Tate

    In August, Andrew Tate — known for serving as a misogynist guru for young boys and men — was banned from Meta, YouTube, and TikTok for his hateful and violent rhetoric. During an August 25 interview with Fox News host Tucker Carlson following these bans, Tate announced that he’d be using Rumble going forward, encouraging a “mass exodus” to the platform. On September 7, Rumble shared a press release announcing that the platform reached a “new monthly active user record” in August, with a substantial portion of this growth coming from “users in the 18- to 24-year-old 'Gen Z' age group.”

    The same day as the Carlson interview, Tate shared a video to his Rumble channel titled “EMERGENCY MEETING 1 - THE MATRIX ATTACKS,” in which he yelled, “You can cancel me. I’m about to pave the road for every other man out here with an opinion who’s gonna get canceled. I’ll show you where to fucking go. Bro. Let’s get ready to rumble.” The video is now one of his most-viewed videos, with over 800,000 views. Tate’s Rumble channel has over 680,000 subscribers.

  • Andrew Tate Rumble Subscribers
  • Russia's state-run media outlet RT uses Rumble to push anti-Ukraine propaganda

  • On February 26, Google barred “Russia's state-owned media outlet RT and other channels from receiving money for ads on their websites, apps and YouTube videos, similar to a move by Facebook after the invasion of Ukraine.” Less than a week later, RT announced that it would have a 24/7 livestream on Rumble. This livestream has millions of views to date, and RT continues using the platform to share Russian propaganda.

  • image of rumble video
  • QAnon-supporters have a large presence on Rumble

  • The QAnon conspiracy theory has been tied to various acts of real world violence and is considered a potential domestic terror threat by the FBI. Media Matters identified 12 popular QAnon podcasts that regularly share videos to Rumble. Collectively, these podcasts have more than 1.7 million subscribers on the platform.

  • QAnon supporting podcasts on Rumble
  • Election misinformation thrives on Rumble

  • A search on Rumble for videos about the 2020 election yields numerous videos falsely claiming that there was widespread voter fraud and that the election was stolen from former President Donald Trump. In May, right-wing fraudster Dinesh D’Souza shared his repeatedly debunked movie 2000 Mules to his 1.7 million Rumble subscribers – the video earned nearly 1.5 million views. His channel also features the trailer for the movie, which has earned nearly 4 million views.

  • 2,000 mules on Rumble
  • 2,000 mules trailer on Rumble
  • Additionally, Rumble hosts numerous videos of Trump ally Darren Beattie pushing conspiracy theories related to the 2020 election and subsequent January 6 insurrection, including in interviews with extremist Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) and Matt Gaetz (R-FL). These videos have each received over 1 million views.

  • Rumble is rife with COVID-19 and vaccine misinformation

  • Hazardous misinformation related to the COVID-19 virus and vaccines proliferates across Rumble, including in videos with millions of views that make false claims such as that the Pfizer vaccine does “more harm than good.” One video claiming to be “in memoriam” for the “victims of the COVID-19 ‘vaccines’” has earned nearly 7 million views.

  • In Memoriam: Victims of COVID-19 "Vaccines" on Rumble