There’s gold in them thar trolls!
Conservative gay provocateur and self-described “dangerous faggot” Milo Yiannopoulos, who got his start as technology editor for Breitbart News, has signed a book deal with Simon & Schuster worth $250,000.
Yiannopoulos will pen a book titled “Dangerous,” about the rise of online populism and its role in Donald Trump’s upset victory in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
Breitbart’s former CEO, Steve Bannon, served as campaign director for Trump and will now assume a role as strategy chief at the White House. For his part, Yiannopoulos won fame (or notoriety) with his baiting of liberals, typically by violating the tenets of what he and other conservatives describe as stifling political correctness around social issues, such as race and gender.
Yiannopoulos’ “Dangerous Faggot” tour became a de facto pro-Trump traveling circus, as Yiannopoulos himself acknowledged, frequently referring to the candidate as “Daddy.” Along the way, he helped craft a message, targeted to younger voters, that attempted to bridge Trump’s positions and their own.
For example, he highlighted the threat posed by Islamist terrorism to LGBT individuals in the wake of the Orlando nightclub shooting.
Still, Yiannopoulos remains anathema to large sectors of the left-leaning media establishment, due to his many controversial statements (e.g., referring to feminism as a “cancer”) and his trolling of African-American actress Leslie Jones on Twitter, which got him kicked off the social network earlier this year.
Reactions to the book deal were swift and predictably displeased. For example, Los Angeles Times book editor Carolyn Kellog tweeted: “If you approved a $250K book deal for the troll promoting racist, sexist views so extreme he got thrown off this platform — we need to talk.” The Chicago Review of Books has vowed to boycott Simon & Schuster books in its reviews next year.
Yiannopoulos evinced little concern, noting in a Facebook post that each previous attempt to silence him has only raised his profile: “I’m more powerful, more influential, and more fabulous than ever before and this book is the moment Milo goes mainstream.”
For the time being, Simon & Schuster is standing by the deal, signed by the publisher’s conservative Threshold imprint.