WorldNetDaily, a far-right conspiracy theory website, was a prominent corner of the Internet for attacks on President Barack Obama just a decade ago. It was one of the most prominent hubs of the "birther" theory, which held that Obama was lying about being an American citizen.
Flash forward to today. According to the Washington Post, the site is in serious trouble, with several conservative authors alleging that the founder, Joseph Farah, is stiffing them on promised royalty payments as part of his company's publishing arm.
One such author is former Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK), who complained, "He doesn't keep his commitments. He doesn't keep his word." But Coburn isn't the only author accusing Farah and WorldNetDaily of leaving them high and dry:
Other authors, initially attracted to WND by the image Farah crafted for himself as a devout evangelical Christian, have groused that they paid WND's pay-to-publish division thousands of dollars to have their books printed but haven't received the royalties they were promised or other items, such as audio versions of their works. Their complaints, requests for basic accounting statements and pleas for help were largely ignored, according to emails and interviews with more than a dozen authors.
Reached by phone last week, Farah's wife, Elizabeth — the site's co-founder with her husband — declined to discuss the accusations in detail, but added that "the angst of a former employee does not impress me as to the legitimacy of complaints."
WorldNetDaily is also suffering a loss of readership and revenue, according to interviews with employees and shareholders, as well as financial statements obtained by the Washington Post.
One of WorldNetDaily's most famous alumni is Jerome Corsi, a former partner of President Donald Trump's campaign adviser Roger Stone who was caught up in special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of Russia. Corsi was offered a plea deal, which he rejected, but ultimately was not prosecuted.