Code of Conduct

The best way to think of Ricochet is as a bar. Come in, have a drink, hang out, say whatever you want to. But don’t badger, bully, or berate the other drinkers, or you’ll be kicked out. We don’t do viewpoint discrimination here: we don’t care if you like or hate that politician everyone’s talking about, if your views are traditionally “conservative,” or if you’re in the majority or minority on the hot-button issue of the day. We do care how you behave. This is a civil place, for civil people. That’s our main rule—and we’re sticking to it.


The Ricochet Code of Conduct follows on from, and incorporates, the Terms and Conditions to which all members agree. It is designed to keep our interactions here pleasant and rewarding. The examples given are illustrative, not exhaustive.

First things first: Please try to make moderation unnecessary where possible. Ricochet is a community of adults. Adults are capable of controlling themselves. If you’re not capable of controlling yourself, this site probably isn’t for you. If a given post is making you crazy, just go somewhere else on the site. Post authors have considerable influence on the direction of the comment threads on their posts, so please respect their requests. If you are receiving peer pressure to back off in the comments section of someone else’s post, please pay attention to those signals. We all make mistakes, but willfully doubling down on our “right” to bang on incessantly misses the point and often makes things worse. “Give it a rest” is often the best advice we can receive. If your argument really means that much to you, feel free to start your own post on the topic.

That being said: Members may flag comments they believe violate the Code of Conduct. When doing so, they should include the specific violation they see in the comment they are flagging. Flags that don’t include a solid “reason” for the flagging will be ignored, as will repeat flags that amount to the targeting of another member for his viewpoint.

Moderation: Ricochet‘s moderators may redact or completely remove comments that represent egregious violations of the Code of Conduct. In the case of repeated, serious violations,  a member may be suspended for a period of time. Repeated suspensions will lead to a permanent ban. On occasion, moderators may intervene in discussions that violate the norms of civil conversation, whether or not they explicitly violate the Code of Conduct.

Escalation: Ricochet reserves the right to edit or delete posts or comments; to disable member promotions; to demote posts from the main feed; to permanently suspend members; and, in extraordinary cases, to permanently ban members who repeatedly violate the site’s Terms and Conditions. Invective aimed at the moderators will result in suspension or a permanent ban.


  • Assume as matter of habit that your fellow members are arguing in good faith, and that they will assume the same for you. Members should treat others as they would like to be treated by others in face-to-face encounters.
  • We don’t swear much. If you must convey profanity, please use: “[expletive].”
  • Do not use all-caps. On the Internet, all-caps is shouting.
  • Take care to honor copyright limitations, both textual and in images. Posts that reference other materials extensively should note as much. Quotations should be clearly marked as such. Posts that consist of nothing but links, quotes, or images taken from elsewhere will not be considered for promotion to the Main Feed.
  • When posting matters of “fact,” make a reasonable effort to include some source and supporting materials. Pure opinion pieces don’t require such sourcing, but, if you’re not backing yourself up, you should expect polite pushback.
  • Feel free to cross-post from other sites, but you should also bring something new to the Ricochet conversation.
  • Respect the post author’s right to keep the conversation on-topic if he or she feels it is drifting too far from the point. Post authors, please understand that—especially over time— conversational drift is a natural outgrowth of energetic engagement.
  • Avoid thread-jacking. This includes repeatedly posting off-topic comments on a particular thread, straining to connect your comments to the subject of the thread, and riding a beloved hobby-horse that has nothing to do with the conversation at hand.
  • Understand that, because it is performed by humans and not by robots, moderating is ultimately a subjective endeavor. In difficult cases, moderators will use their best judgment. Occasionally, this will require moderators to address behavior that violates the civility the Code of Conduct is intended to foster, even in such cases as that behavior does not explicitly violate any of the current rules.


  • Abuse: Arguing is fine. Name-calling and personal attacks are not. There is a substantial difference between saying that someone is wrong or myopic or naive about an issue and saying that someone is a “moron.” Likewise, there is a difference between criticizing someone’s conduct and criticizing someone per se.
  • Doxxing: Posting sensitive information about your fellow members is strictly prohibited.
  • Threats: Ricochet has a zero-tolerance policy toward direct threats.
  • Collaboration: Members may not use Ricochet’s posts, comments, or groups to stir up campaigns of abuse against other members.


  • Members may be suspended or permanently banned if they exhibit a clear and consistent pattern of incivility, even if each of the occurrences that make up that pattern are, in and of themselves, insufficient to warrant such action.

The old Code of Conduct can be found here.