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The fringe internet frets over Mike Bloomberg's place in the 2020 race

Michael Bloomberg
Photo: Andrew Burton/Getty Images

Since entering the presidential fray last week, billionaire Mike Bloomberg has become a popular topic on fringe internet forums, where users have dished about what his war chest could mean for the race, according to data provided to Axios from social intelligence firm Storyful.

Why it matters: Discussions on Reddit, as well as fringe-right sites 4chan and Gab, discuss whether Bloomberg's well-financed entrance into the race will upend President Trump's second bid for The White House.

On Reddit, the most popular discussion — amassing over 1,400 comments since it started on November 8 — is titled "Michael Bloomberg, the Billionaire No One Likes, Is Here to F*** Up 2020." That title came from a Vice article that published with that headline on November 7th.

  • The most upvoted comment criticized Bloomberg and said he just had "the money to make sure everyone pays attention to him."

On 4chan, a thread started on November 7 entitled "It’s happening, It’s over" had multiple comments stating Bloomberg’s indication he would enter the race was a prelude to Hillary Clinton joining as well. 

The big picture: Bloomberg's candidacy is picking up steam online.

  • Bloomberg received more mentions across Twitter, public Facebook pages, Reddit, Gab, and 4chan between November 5 and 10 than Cory Booker and Amy Klobuchar combined, according to analysis from Storyful senior journalist Catherine Sanz.

Be smart: For Bloomberg Media, which has long had a rule that the company can't cover Michael Bloomberg itself, coverage of Bloomberg's candidacy is complicated.

  • According to Politico's Michael Calderone, "Bloomberg News has no idea how it will cover [Bloomberg's] candidacy."
  • According to the Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg would likely cover him like they covered him as mayor, which included coverage of Bloomberg as a candidate through a dedicated correspondent and a disclosure about the media company's ties to the politician.

What's next: According to an internal memo obtained by NBC News' Claire Atkinson, "If Bloomberg runs for president, a management committee will run his company."

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