BOR Policy: Right to Respond

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I'd like to announce a new policy at Burnt Orange Report which is to be formalized by this post. Inspired by Open Left, and necessary due to our regular commentary on public figures and organizations, I'm announcing our “Right to Respond” Policy.

The “Right to Respond” will be a standing promise on Burnt Orange Report where any Democratic or progressive candidate, campaign, or organization we discuss in a front-page post is granted a front-page post in response. The individual, campaign, or organization should preferably do so through their Burnt Orange Report user account (create one here) so that they may engage in comments on that and future posts that are related to them.

The “Right to Respond” is rooted in our Democratic values of openness and broader participation in politics.  It also recognizes that while we may disagree at times, we support (generally) civil discussion that promotes honest debate.  If you, your campaign, or your organization wishes to formally respond to a front-page article in which you were mentioned, don't hesitate to contact us about posting a response.  


About Author

Former Publisher & Owner of the Burnt Orange Report. Political Thinker, Digital Explorer, and Time Traveler.


  1. Robert Singleton on

    BOR Policy
    That should save space in the Austin Mayor's race, since there are no progressive candidates running.

  2. Gritsforbreakfast on

    Opening a can of worms
    How does limiting the right to respond to “any Democratic or progressive candidate, campaign, or organization” jibe with the notion of “Democratic values of openness and broader participation in politics”? Apparently the big “D” in Democratic is the controlling concept?

    And progressive by what standard? Singleton is right, I wouldn't plant that label on a single, announced Austin mayoral candidate.

    To me, the blogosphere pretty much made the right to respond moot. They already have the comments section, and part of the beauty of blogs is that anyone who likes can launch one.

    I'll be interested to see how this works out for you, but I'd personally be hesitant about such a policy – I can see it causing problems more than promoting honest debate.

  3. Good policy, but….
    Why limit it to Democrats? If there is a front-page post about a conservative politician/organization, why not allow them the same right to respond? We will all surely disagree with their response, but it will engender healthy discussion and debate. By having a truly open market place of ideas at BOR we avoid being subsumed into an insular echo chamber. Don't worry, we progressives can handle whatever they respond with.  

    • You know what
      If Rick Perry wants to write a post, we'll let him.

      The only time a Republican has used his/her own name on BOR to respond to anything was when Rep. Will Hartnett wrote a long comment in response to a post I wrote; I put his comment on the front page.

      If Todd Staples, John Cornyn, or Rick Perry want to post something, they can and we'll put it up there. That's just common sense.

  4. i agree..
    with both matt and phillip.

    while it increases the profile and importance of BOR to have notable repubs post, it shouldn't necessarily be the business of BOR to allow folks that don't share our values to share the platform.

    i'm sure there is a process by which y'all will weed through and make the right calls.

    i think the policy is great.

    • Mixed feelings about Repubs responding
      Honestly, I think that if a Repub would actually respond it would be FUN to front page it and see what happens in the comments.  The beauty of this system is that our ideas are “right” and thus truth will ultimately prevail in any system that allows for complete freedom of information.

      With that being said, I do NOT think that blatant lies, smears, personal attacks, etc should be allowed.  There is a line between what is productive discourse and what is destructive.

  5. Case by case
    We don't have to argue over a policy on whether Republicans posts should be front-paged. It happens so rarely that the BOR team can handle it on a case-by-case basis. They're smart enough to tell the difference between answering accusations posted on BOR and spreading general-purpose propaganda.

    As for the good guys, I do like the new policy, assuming that the “or” in “Democratic or progressive” is serious. Democrats of all stripes, and anybody with even a remote claim to be progressive, should he heard. And yes, that includes almost all of the mayoral candidates.  

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