What is Ricochet? Really, we’re three things:

  1. A blog where you can read center-right commentary.
  2. The number one source for center-right podcasts on the internet.
  3. We’re a social network. When you’re a member of Ricochet, you can interact with our contributors and other members via comments on posts, direct messages, and live chats. Most political sites on the web feature smart people talking at you. At Ricochet, those people are talking with you.

A lot of this stuff is free. Why should I join? Ricochet operates on a fundamentally conservative principle: that people are willing to pay for value. How much would you be willing to pay for an all-access pass to a 24/7 cocktail party where you could interact with some of the center-right’s biggest talents? Probably a lot more than the pittance we charge for access to Ricochet conversations and podcasts. Why not join today?

I’ve been on internet forums with comments before and they always devolve into a cesspool of name calling and personal attacks. Why is Ricochet any different? Simple — the cost of membership. We don’t charge much to be a member. It’s just enough to cover our costs. But the reason we put up that nominal barrier to entry is because we believe almost no one will actually put down money just to troll others. Communities are different when everyone has skin in the game. With very few exceptions, we’ve been proven right. We’ve got something special here.

The few occasions where people go over the line are handled by our Code of Conduct. It’s a simple set of rules of the road. No profanity, no ad hominem, treat others like you’re attending a dinner party with them, etc. We’re proud of the CoC, but you know what we’re even more proud of? How infrequently we have to use it. Editors will enforce the code when it’s broken, but our members have overwhelmingly internalized these norms and policed themselves. It’s because of them that we can boast of being the most civil forum on the web.

What’s Ricochet’s Editorial Stance? Simple — we don’t have one. There’s no Ricochet ideology any more than there’s a town hall meeting ideology. We don’t take an institutional position on anything. We’re a forum — a place for people of divergent views to explore and engage with ideas. We’ve got conservatives, moderates, social conservatives, libertarians — basically every stripe of the center-right you can imagine. At Ricochet, you’ll hear the same variety of views on issues like immigration, gay marriage, abortion, foreign policy, and libertarianism that you would in any large gathering of people on the center-right. Do we exclude liberals? No. We’ve even had a few join up. But this is primarily a forum for those on the center-right and we ask that all members and contributors respect that.

What’s the Member Feed? The Member Feed is an exclusive area of the site open only to our paid members. There you can write your own posts, several of which get promoted each day to our Main Feed, where they’ll be available to the public. If you’ve ever dreamed of blogging stardom but haven’t wanted to go through the work of setting up your own site, Ricochet is the place for you. Simply join up and start writing.

We’ve had writers from our Member Feed featured in outlets like RealClearPolitics, Instapundit, Time magazine, The Federalist, and the Rush Limbaugh show. We’ve even asked a few to join our roster of regular contributors. We realize that there’s a lot more talent out there than just the professional pundits in Washington, New York, and Los Angeles. The Member Feed is our way of developing conservative talent from all walks of life and all corners of the country.

What are Ricochet Meetups? Ricochet is more than a website; it’s a community. Ricochet members regularly organize meetups throughout the country and the world. These are opportunities for our members to meet each other face-to-face and continue the conversations they’ve been having online. One of the best parts of Ricochet is meeting people for the first time and feeling like they’re already old friends. Through the community, we’ve created friendships, romantic relationships (a few even got married!), and business arrangements.

I’m nervous about writing for a public audience. Do I have to be a writer to be a member of Ricochet? Not at all. In fact, the vast majority of our members are lurkers who are just here to read and listen to the thoughts of others. You may be surprised, however, at the urges you end up feeling to comment on a post or even write up one of your own. You’re among friends here, so you can expect encouragement if and when you decide to dip your toe in. You can also mark your posts as members only, so they’ll stay on the Member Feed.

Can I buy a Ricochet gift Membership for a friend? Yes, there’s a Gift Membership option that allows you to buy a friend a (new) one year Calvin Coolidge membership. If you want to cover the cost of membership for an existing member, please contact us.

Can anyone become a member? Absolutely. There’s no litmus test for membership. But we’re quite happy to say that Ricochet showcases what we think to be some of the best back and forth you can find to the right of center. Though we’re to be found all across that half of the political spectrum, we lean to the right. Of course, we’re not here to be bobbleheads. Neither are you, right? We’re here for dynamic, insightful, meaningful exchanges — however the participants might be labeled.

Are you trying to rebrand the right? Hardly. Ricochet isn’t a partisan scheme or the project of some movement or think tank. If you’re looking for a site dedicated to inside-the-beltway positioning or political public relations, you’ve come to the wrong place. If you’re looking for a big group of discerning, quick-witted, and amiable center-right folks enjoying the benefits of a conversational community, congratulations. You’ve found it.

Are you accepting new contributors? If you’d like to nominate someone, feel free to drop the editors a line at info@ricochet.com. We’re always interested to learn who you think has an essential, must-read voice. But bear in mind our cast of contributors is finite and, we like to think, top shelf.

Got a question you don’t see here? Tell us! We’ll add it to the list — with a helpful answer.