Our move to (paywall-free!) Reason from The Washington Post

Information may or may not want to be free -- but that's certainly what we want for our posts.

|The Volokh Conspiracy |

As you can see, we've moved from the Washington Post, where we've blogged since early 2014, to Reason. Good to see you here, and we hope you'll keep visiting us here often! We wanted to say a few things about our move, to satisfy those curious about it and to avoid the need for people to speculate about our reasons.

  1. First, we wanted to thank our Post hosts very much for nearly four years—mostly very happy years—blogging at their site.

    We benefited greatly from the Post's deservedly excellent reputation, and drew many new readers. We also benefited greatly from the technical support provided by Ben Sumner, and the work of all the editors at their copyediting desk. We much appreciate all that the Post and its people have done for us and for the blog.

  2. Why, then, the move? The chief reason was that we wanted to be freely available to the broadest range of readers.

    When we first moved to the Post, we knew that there was going to be a paywall (despite our attempts to negotiate around it). But our understanding was that the paywall would be quite porous, with (1) free access via RSS, Twitter, and Facebook, (2) free access to .edu/.gov/.mil readers, and (3) a generous number of free views each month for everyone. This year, though, all three elements of this have changed, and the paywall has gotten much tighter. This means that many of our most loyal readers would be unable to access the site without a Post subscription. And it means that many people whom we'd like to attract to our site might feel priced out of it.

    This doesn't work for us. We value those readers who visit our site occasionally (usually via Google News or search), as well as Post subscribers who come to our blog through the Post. But we especially value our loyal, longtime readers, who are particularly likely to trust and enjoy our work. And it's important to us that law students, college students, young lawyers, and others have free, easy access to the analysis and discussion on our site.

    It's such a delight to go to a conference or a law school talk and have people tell me that they've been reading the blog regularly: It makes me feel that all our writing effort has been worthwhile. We want to keep them and develop new regular readers—and a paywall would largely stop that from working. Moving to Reason lets us do these things, while still partnering with a respected media organization that we have long admired.

    Now we certainly understand the Post's need to make money; we had hoped that the earlier, non-paywall advertising-supported model would have sufficed for that, but it sounds like the Post's business judgment has changed. Still, we have to make our own judgment, and that judgment has led to a parting of the ways.

  3. There was also a second reason for our move: editorial independence. The only thing more important to us than attracting new readers and keeping our old ones is making sure that we can write what we want, in the way that we think is right.

    This includes—controversially in newspaper circles—the right to accurately and completely quote material from cases and controversies, including when the material contains vulgar words. We ourselves don't use vulgarities in the material we compose ourselves, because of our own editorial judgment. If (for instance) we're talking about Cohen v. California (1971), the leading First Amendment case in which the Court upheld a man's right to wear a jacket saying "Fuck the Draft," we don't want to have to say "F— the Draft." (Some readers may recognize this as the use-mention distinction.)

    Such obscuring of the facts strikes me as untrue to our mission as academics and writers to report things as they are. True, in a sense it's symbolic: People can usually understand what "s—" or "c—" means. But the flip side is that it's hard for me to see what value such redaction adds. And the symbolism is important to me: I want our readers to understand that they're getting the truth, not the truth edited down to protect some people's sensibilities.

    More importantly, we want the decision whether or not to redact to be ours, not the Post's. This is so for the familiar vulgarities, but also as to similar decisions about what to do with quoting incidents that involve offensive epithets, allegedly offensive team names and band names, allegedly improper use of pronouns to refer to various people, and much more. Once we acknowledge that it's proper to constrain our accurate reporting about one kind of offensive word, how would we effectively be able to defend our right to judge how to report on incidents involving other words?

    To its credit, the Post gave us basically unlimited editorial independence for the first three years of our time together; and even this year, the constraints that we've seen have focused solely on the editing out of quoted vulgarities. But we felt that the change was taking us in the wrong direction, and that we needed to insist on our editorial independence even on this matter. And while, again, we respect the Post's right to control what happens on its platform, it led us to realize that we needed to leave.

    Now I appreciate that some might see this as too rigid an insistence on maximum independence; I think this aspect of the decision was sound, but there's always the risk that it was mistaken, and that more flexibility was called for on this point. But in any event, I'm sure we were correct as to our main reason for the move—the need to leave the paywall behind.

  4. Fortunately, our sense of Reason is that we'll have no worry on either of these matters. Reason has long been paywall-free, and we expect it to continue this way; we will likely never even need to try negotiating an exemption from the paywall, because there won't be a paywall. It helps to team up with an organization that has the same outlook as we do on these matters in the first place. Likewise, Reason seems committed to respecting our editorial independence, and not requiring us to constrain our reporting on what was actually said.
  5. The one factor that did not affect our judgment at all was the revenue from our blog. We can't discuss it in detail, but I can say two things: (a) Our revenue per hour from the blog has always been tiny compared to our normal salaries (and we are fortunate to have regular day jobs that let us blog despite that). (b) We don't expect to get any more money from being at Reason than being at the Post—indeed, we may well get materially less.

    But we're not in it for the money; we're in it for the eyeballs, for editorial freedom, and for the connection that we develop with our readers. That's our true income.

  6. Finally, shifting the conversation from our old partners to our new ones: We hope our readers keep in mind that Reason's editorial stance is not identical to ours. Some of us are pretty seriously libertarian, some are more conservative, some are moderate, many are eclectic. Some of us (such as me) might even be called squishes.

    But Reason editors know that going in, and are on board with our ideological independence. Just as we were never constrained to follow the Post's editorial positions, so we aren't constrained to follow Reason's. Our readers, as always, may agree or disagree with us—but we likewise want them to know what we are (and what we aren't) when they come to the blog.

With that, we look forward to many happy years together, and again thank the Post very much for the happy years that we had with them!


NEXT: Many thanks, and our move from The Post to Reason

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Dear Prof. Volokh, et al.,

    Welcome to your new blog home. Best wishes for a happy partnership!


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    2. Hopefully, Eugene will also welcome, and endorse, Reason’s liberal commenting policy. Eugene is an excellent conservative publicist, who has done a great job trying to limit the outrageous expansion of so-called First Amendment “liberties” that we’ve seen in recent years (such as in the “Stolen Valor” case, where he tried to convince the Supreme Court to reject precisely that expansion).

      For some insight into Eugene’s special skills, one need only examine the role he played in convincing the public that the New York appellate courts were right to retroactively criminalize inappropriately deadpan “parody,” and his magnificent silence in the face of criticism in that regard. Our only complaint is that despite his principled position, he had the weakness to protest when he was asked to delete one of his own blog entries in which this affair was discussed. See the documentation at:

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  2. Best wishes for a good run here!

    On a more technical note, will an RSS feed be available?

    1. should still work, and should propagate Real Soon Now (within an hour or two, I hope).

      1. Just checked again, and the RSS feed URL now does work.

        1. Feed transition works seamlessly for me ๐Ÿ™‚

      2. It does work, but there is no link on each article over to the same article at Reason. What if I am reading the RSS feed and want to leave one of my awesome comments?

        1. You have awesome comments? Stop hoarding them.

  3. I also keep getting an “Authentication Required” popup from asking for a username and password and have to keep cancelling it away. Perhaps Reason hasn’t completed the setup of your blog page(s)?

    1. Sorry about the glitches, but working well now!

  4. “More importantly, we want the decision whether or not to redact to be ours, not the Post’s. This is so for the familiar vulgarities, but also as to similar decisions about what to do with quoting incidents that involve offensive epithets, allegedly offensive team names and band names, allegedly improper use of pronouns to refer to various people, and much more. Once we acknowledge that it’s proper to constrain our accurate reporting about one kind of offensive word, how would we effectively be able to defend our right to judge how to report on incidents involving other words?”

    The PC Police put on the heat, so you decided to move across town where the air is free? Sounds like a good decision to me.

  5. Congrats on the move. Reason seems like a much better home.

    Not that the WaPo hosting ever bothered me. I’m still using RSS for most of my blog reading, and that wasn’t ever paywalled. Even then, I still had access to WaPo as I get in as a benefit of a subscription to my local paper.

    But nonetheless, eyeballs are the currency here, and being assured that whenever I send out a link to your posts people can read it easily is welcomed.

    (And hey, I’m a Reason supporter, so if a few of my pennies hit your wallet, good!)

  6. Inline styling markup test.

    HTML: bold, strong, italic, strikethrough (del)

    Markdown: **bold**, *italic*, ~~strikethrough~~

    1. strikethrough

      1. HTML works here

    2. Let’s see if colors with CSS work:






      1. Nope, but it read the paragraph tag and gave it some default spacing.

  7. Congratulations on your move.

    In additions to the reasons you’ve given, I have to say that I hope it will improve the quality of the comments section. Back when the blog was on it’s own site I thought that the discussions on many posts were quite interesting. Once you moved to the Post the quality of the comments seemed to decline considerably.

    1. Probably just a coincidence.

    2. I used to think that but every time I look back over the comments threads in the old posts, it doesn’t seem more high brow. What I’m saying is that my posts have always been shit, and so have yours. I have absolutely no plans for intellectual or moral growth.

    3. ^True

    4. If you’re hoping this will improve the quality of the comment section, you haven’t read the Reason comments before.

      1. Now that’s not fair! WaPo comments are worse.

        I mean, sure, it’s the difference between a dry turd and a wet one, but there’s a difference!

      2. A more wretched hive of scum and villainy, etc, etc.

      3. I don’t think you’ve read the WaPo comment section.

        I admit, it may be fun seeing ‘Reverend’ Arthur Kirkland interact with the regulars here.

        1. I can’t wait for that troll to show his pie hole…..

        2. Arthur L. Kirkland dropped the “Reverend” title long ago, it was never clever anyway.
          Unfortunately he has found his way here and he still sounds like a rightwing troll’s parody of the kind of arrogant elitist blue state coastie who helped elect the none of the above candidate Donald Trump. He’s no fun anymore.

          I do miss Sarcastr0 already. Hope he finds his way to Reason.

      4. WaPo comments are pretty bad. Reason’s are selectively bad. If an article is published that is at odds with the more statist right, it seems like the article comments will get flooded with mindlessness and unknown names (not because of a merely different perspective, but because it’s diametrically opposite to their echo chamber).

    5. That’s because no self-respecting libertarian or conservative wanted to donate to the survival of that dying leftling fishwrap.

    6. You come to Reason for the “quality comments section”? Bwahaha!!!

      That’s a joke right? 50-60 comments per post arguing who is more libertarian than others?

      It’s much more entertaining than any other site I frequent, for sure. But I’m not sure that word “quality” means what you think it means

      1. With 80% of ’em coming from those who aren’t libertarian at all, at that.

  8. Excellent news! I had been stymied by the paywall repeatedly in recent months.

    1. And now you get to be stymied by reason’s comment software

      1. C’mon, the skwerlz are mostly benign, if not friendly…..

      2. Reason comment software is no where near as bad as the WaPo. I’ve been on both for years.

    2. Come on, it’s easy. I am hesitant to give it away for free, since the Post spies may see it.

  9. Excellent news! I had been stymied by the paywall repeatedly in recent months.

  10. Lucky pairing! Read some of your blog entries before and enjoyed them.

    Good luck in the future!

  11. Four years? It’s been four years since the move? That can’t be right! It must not be right. Oh my God! It is right!

    Well, congratulations from this rapidly aging – longtime – reader.

  12. Welcome to Reason. I am thrilled to have access to your material now. Oh, and please DO read the comments section, in spite of what others will tell you.

    1. It’s the best part of the website

  13. Welcome to the commentariat!

  14. Now with “wild commenters” (Liz Wolfe).

  15. I hope the Conspirators enjoy their stay at Reason, and that some libertarianism rubs off on their authoritarian and conservative positions.

    1. They’ve been marinating in WaPo authoritarianism for 4 years, so they probably regard themselves as libertarian, relatively.

    2. By the way, Rev, how easy has it been for you to internally meld libertarianism and Marxism? Lesser heads have been known to explode from such attempts.

      1. Nothing to explode?

      2. It is at least as easy as purporting to make libertarianism congruent with authoritarian, bigoted, backward, non-reason-based right-wing positions.

        1. We don’t take kindly to tu quoque fallacies round these parts.

          1. We don’t take kindly to tu quoque fallacies round these parts.

            Go easy on him. It’s all he’s got.

          2. The principal difference between the Volokh Conspiracy at Reason and the Volokh Conspiracy at the Washington Post, so far, is the censorship of comments.

            The censorship is being conducted at Reason.

    3. Ugh. I just commented below that my hope was you got left behind. Allow me to welcome your odious views to Reason:

      Fuck off, slaver.

      1. On the positive side for WaPo, it’s commenting system was kept PG.

    4. I see RAK made his/hers/its way over here. Perhaps the name of the host site will rub off on him/her/it.

  16. This seems like a great decision.

    Whose commenting policy will be enforced?

    1. Let’s find out. Fuck you, you fucking Nazi fucker!

      1. Twenty-one chipper salute!

      2. Mmm “Fuck off slaver!”?

      3. Let’s try some really foul, nasty words and phrases – White! Male! Cis! He/she/him/her/they! Trump! Illegal alien! Pro-life! Grammar! Chicago! Golf! Family values! Radical Islam! Patriot! Founding Fathers! Constitution! Thug!

        1. If you work hard enough, you can succeed!

        2. G*lf…you R truly a sik fuk!

        3. How unfortunate for those criticizing the Washington Post that the primary distinction between the Conspiracy at Reason and the Conspiracy at the Post, so far, is the censorship of comments by the Conspiracy at

          Carry on, clingers.

    2. Heck, over at Bloomberg you can’t even use words like Jews or Nazis, that is unless you know the HTML magic of zero-width non-breaking spaces.

      1. Teach me the ways of the Force.

    3. Just don’t call litigious lawyers goat fuckers. They’re kinda sensitive about that.

      I, for one, would never insinuate that litigous lawyers are goatfuckers to a man.

      1. And recall why sharks don’t eat litigators? Professional courtesy

        1. But woodchippers on the other hand, they eat those little shits for breakfast

      2. I’m pretty sure that the species in question were sheep, not goats….

      3. You can call them goat fuckers, you just can’t say that they fuck goats. Even if they do actually fuck goats. Also, no wood chipper jokes, although the cumstain that took issue with those particular comments is thankfully out of office. Man, we’ve caused a lot of headaches for Gillespie and co., now that I think about it.

        1. Last I checked, Trump’s in office and this is still ‘Merca, so if I want to make a joke about a woodchipper being in the path of a clumsy magistrate, by God I will

  17. The RSS link above is incorrect, it links to the Reason blog Hit and Run, but seems to work as a VC blog RSS feed.

  18. Excellent news. A real feather in Reason’s cap.

  19. Does this mean I can talk about my height again?

    1. If that’s not evidence that all is right with the world once more, I’m not sure what is.

    2. Not really…

  20. I’m glad for the move. I stopped reading a while ago when I started getting paywall message. I already subscribe to the NYT and WSJ. The WP would be one too many. I’m now going to donate to Reason the next time they fund raise.

    1. Funnily enough, that was last week.

      1. Funnily enough, I donated last week and already the benefits went up.

  21. The WaPo paywall never ever reared its ugly head for me, probably because I decline all cookies from the WaPo.

    You’ve shown up on Reason just after their annual webegathon, which is delightfully derided for its occasional popup begging. It’s not a paywall, it requires nothing more than hitting ESC, and it only lasts a week. I wonder if you will be exempted from this.

    Maybe this will be the straw that finally pushes Reason into cleaning up their comment engine. You have apparently already been hit by the squirrel double posting.

  22. Good move.

  23. All together now: WE WANT BALKO!!!!

  24. An excellent match made. Congrats.

  25. The Koch brothers got to them, too. Oh no!

      1. No? They didn’t hit you in the palm? Guys are getting stingy.

  26. Welcome aboard Volkh folks.

    1. I see what you did there. Better late than never!

  27. Congratulations on the move (for all the right reasons), and thanks for everything you do.

  28. This is very good news!

  29. You’re a FRAUD and your slanders against the WaPo are strawmen and everyone else is arguing in bad faith except me.

    1. LMAO
      Good to see ya!

  30. Well, this made the final difference for me to subscribe to Reason, so win-win.

  31. “And it’s important to us that law students, college students, young lawyers, and others have free, easy access to the analysis and discussion on our site.”

    So does this mean you also believe that all higher education should be “Free” and are you in the Bernie Camp on this? Of course, nothing is free; someone always pays. You just like the Reason business model more than WAPO’s.

    1. Well, I wasn’t making a broad philosophical statement, as I tried to expressly note. (“Now we certainly understand the Post’s need to make money; we had hoped that the earlier, non-paywall advertising-supported model would have sufficed for that, but it sounds like the Post’s business judgment has changed. Still, we have to make our own judgment, and that judgment has led to a parting of the ways.”) I was simply talking about what we want for the material that we create.

      1. Not everybody declined to read at the Washington Post because of the paywall. I only click on any of the “usual suspects” reluctantly and infrequently, so I missed you guys.

        Eugene — hoping Trump has your name on a list for the Supremes!

        1. Seconded.

          Barnett next.

        2. Never, ever on SCOTUS. As long as Eugene believes that a total ban on AR platform rifles is perfectly Constitutional the firearms community wants to keep him far away from sitting on any court.

          1. From my observations, he’s perfectly willing to argue for his position, vice issue diktat – this is the invaluable difference.

            1. we don’t need someone on the Court “arguing a position” that a ban on AR type rifles is Constitutional.

      2. Well, in fact you were. Your entire six point apologia is a philosophical statement.

  32. I’m one of those longtime readers who appreciates this move, and hopes to now read more often.

  33. “We ourselves don’t use vulgarities in the material we compose ourselves, because of our own editorial judgment. If (for instance) we’re talking about Cohen v. California (1971), the leading First Amendment case in which the Court upheld a man’s right to wear a jacket saying “Fuck the Draft,” we don’t want to have to say “F— the Draft.” (Some readers may recognize this as the use-mention distinction.)”

    You’ve landed at the right place. ‘Tact’ is not our strong suit. But we call out bull shit like few publications this side of the St. Lawrence river can.

    “Such obscuring of the facts strikes me as untrue to our mission as academics and writers to report things as they are. True, in a sense it’s symbolic: People can usually understand what “s—” or “c—” means.”

    So we’re clear and off to a transparent start (thanks Obama you fuck!), the word here is ‘cunt’, right?

    In any event…

    Just as long as you understand many of us here own orphans and engage in orphan trafficking because libertarians. We will not tolerate any musings about its immorality or illegality. We depend on them. Orphan labor = profits.

    On a serious note, been reading Volokh for years even before the move to the WaPo.

    1. I discovered Volokh last year and find both his articles and talks most excellent.

  34. Yaaaaaaaay!

  35. I am happy with the move. I never liked the paywall as the only reason I went to the Post was for the Conspiracy.

  36. The move from WaPo was long overdue. Reason is a well chosen home for the Conspirators

  37. Christmas came early this year!

  38. Yeah!

  39. yay no more association with the degenerate wapo

  40. AWESOME!

    The $3 I was paying to the WaPo to read your blog was the most painful $3 I was spending ever.

    As recently as 2011, I would actually recommend the WaPo to people as a reasonably balanced left of center newspaper.

    In the last two years in particular, it has descended into the fever swamp.

    I’m so glad you are out of it.

    1. Yep. The WaPo has become the branch the Shrieking and Poo-flinging community perches on. Very happy to cancel my account and follow the Conspiracy here.

    2. The Dark Lord who owns The WaPo says,”Truth Dies in Darkness.”. So, there is that.

  41. Welcome aboard! I’m a longtime Reason reader who’s never really looked at Volokh, but I’ve seen links to your stuff and always had a generally favorable opinion of you.

    Welcome to the additional eyeballs. I look forward to seeing more of your stuff.

  42. Wonderful. I’m an attorney in private practice in NYC and have been reading your blog (and occasionally commenting as well) for many years. Very glad to see that the dreaded paywall is finally a thing of the past. Look forward to many more years of reading it.

  43. So glad I won’t have to go to that commie rag anymore to read this blog. Only thing I’ll miss is the trending Wapo headlines keeping me up to date on the derangement du jour afflicting the left.

    1. The WaPo’s headlines that show up in the Google News feed are hysterical, and even worse after Trump’s election. Nothing but hyperbole, at least in the feed.

      For the first month of the year, one would’ve thought we were living in early 1930s Germany.

      Given their business model, it makes sense though. Most of their revenue comes from advertising, so they need the overwrought, cynical headlines.

  44. Welcome home.

  45. Second look at Reason comments?

    I haven’t been back here in ages. This is a reason to return. Excellent move by the Reason and Volokh groups!

    1. I wish the move to WaPo hadn’t broken Radley Balko.

      1. I’m just glad someone else remembers him. It’s been so long since I’ve seen anything by him I was starting to think he was a figment of my imagination.

  46. Welcome to the party, pal!!

    *Pushes WaPo corpes out of high rise window

  47. Welcome to Reason!

  48. Congratulations on the move. Also would like to thank the Professor for personally answering my e-mail whine regarding the paywall, and for suggesting that Private Browsing might help things. Thank you again.

  49. Thank God – the latest version of the Post site changes made me damn near give up on the Conspiracy.

  50. Welcome! I’ve followed you guys for a while, though the paywall was off-putting sometimes. As long as the execrable “Reverend” doesn’t follow as well…

    1. Oh, he will, be sure of that. All of him.

    2. Time to start asking Reason for an ignore button like WaPo has.

      Poor Arthur. He’s brilliant in his own mind and misunderstood by everyone else.

      1. We already have several of those. Maybe they can entertain each other, or kill each other.

    3. Oh, come on, tell me you don’t find the Reverend AK’s unique blend of arrogance and ignorance hilarious! It just wouldn’t be the same without him!

      1. I’m arrogant and ignorant.

        The average right-wing fan of the Conspiracy is bigoted and backward (and probably superstitious at the expense of reason).

        Where is the hope?

    4. What? You don’t like RAK aka Royal Arse Kisser?

    5. As long as the execrable “Reverend” doesn’t follow as well…

      You mean Kirkland, who already posted in this very thread nearly 3 hours before you?…..nt_7060060

  51. Not the nicest part of town and I don’t care for the shag carpet but the rent is cheap. Wish comments automatically displayed.

    1. Hell, sometimes they don’t display at all.

  52. I read the WaPo version of the VC via RSS, so the paywall didn’t really affect me unless I wanted to comment.

    I’m happy about this for purposes of commenting, but I think it’s too bad for the broader conversation. The WaPo is certainly more widely read and likely more widely respected than Reason. I think it was good to have the VC’s perspective at their site everyday to counterbalance the overbearing liberal slant of the opinions, and the wider reach of the WaPo probably was more conducive to projecting the VC to a broader liberal audience.

    In some respects, this move reflects in some respects a lot of what is happening with opinions all over – everyone is retreating to their own corners (and the libertarian corner is fairly small).

    1. “more widely respected than Reason”. It’s their fantasy, I’ll stay out of it.

      1. I immediately looked for the “Like” button. Couldn’t find one.

    2. “…and likely more widely respected than Reason.”

    3. I’m a post digital suscriber and I lost track of Volokh. Now that it’s on reason I look forward to reading it again. I guess I’m saying the post didn’t advertise it well. OTOH, I admit I ignore the post editorial sections

  53. It’s a good match, and maybe the Conspiracy will shake off the WaPo’s influence after a while.

    Glad to be rid of WaPo’s paywall, that’s for sure. It was a pain.

  54. Hmm… ‘edit’ function?

    1. Haha, you poor soul. We’ve been pleading in vain since time immemorial.

    2. At least there is a preview feature.

  55. Very glad to see such a fine column here instead of the WaPo sewer.

  56. I bet there was a good …. reason … for this move!

    Not going to miss the WaPo. But part of me thinks y’all are trying to set some sort of record for number of different commenting systems. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  57. Yahoo! Thank you for emerging from the paywall. I am a long-time reader who has been severely restricted since 2014. I see your headlines on twitter and hopefully click through, only to be thwarted most times. I’m looking forward to getting back into things.

    1. No, Yahoo! has nothing to do with it.

  58. I am happy to see you move to a more balanced forum than the, increasingly shrill and partisan, WaPost. My only bone to pick is with your characterization of the “deservedly excellent reputation”. Perhaps this was true somewhere in the misty past but no clear thinking observer can any longer think that the WaPost has a reputation for anything more than partisan shilling and prevarication by both commission and omission during the Trump era.
    You were the best part of that paper and now that you are gone there is increasingly little reason to return.
    Congrats on a good move!

    1. The Post sportswriting is pretty good. Their science section is decent too

  59. Incidentally, I seem to remember that one of your first posts from WaPo was expressing a little trepidation about the firewall. Not coincidentally, my use of google incognito increased right when you moved over to WaPo. While not the worst thing to have to do, it was an annoyance. (and sometimes did keep me from reading)

    1. Incognito is how you watch porn safely, in case you forget to clear the history after you are finished. You mean to tell me you can see clean websites while incognito? Hmmm, learn something new every day I guess

  60. Okay. I’ve followed Eugene Volokh since his 1st AMendment listserve days in the early ’90s. Good move to Reason. I check in here occasionally, so now I’ll have to do so more often and give them a little cash I suppose.

    1. Welch is always looking for a little walking around money…

  61. Excellent, fantastically thrilled to see you here!

  62. Good. Moving was long overdue.

  63. Welcome. And I’ll echo many other by saying it’s great to see you here.

    “Likewise, Reason seems committed to respecting our editorial independence, and not requiring us to constrain our reporting on what was actually said.”

    Shit, you don’t even have to say “earmuffs” around here.

  64. Congrats on the move. I wish you well.

    no “like” button;
    no “ignore user.”

    in chrome, if you zoom to 150%, you get the mobile version with no ads on the right side. Sweet!

  65. Now I can go back to Kazinski from Kashole

    1. I should also note that when I lived in Santa Barbara back in the 80’s I bought a used metal desk from some used furniture place that had a couple of dozen memo pads from the Reason Foundation in it. I guess it was surplus when Reason moved from Santa Barbara where it was originally located to Santa Monica.

      That was the first time I ever heard of Reason. I can see from this LA Times article that Reason left Santa Barbara in 1986. That sounds about right.…

  66. Very nice. This will be a great addition to Reason; I think they struck gold by getting you over here.

  67. So glad you moved .
    plus ?a change et plus on cherche la m?me chose !

    1. C’est la guerre!

  68. Best news I’ve received all day! I love the blog but my reading of the blog has been substantially reduced this year because of the tight paywall at the Post.

  69. Welcome; great move. I’ve been stymied by the paywall and have missed you; no worries about that any more. Thanks.

  70. Moving to a new host so you can say “fuck” — America is truly great again!

  71. For some reason I’ve never been stymied by the paywall over there. I’ll sure be glad to not be giving statism central any more clicks, though. Good to see you guys over here.

  72. I was one of your regular readers (going back to about 2010) who had slacked-off recently because of the paywall. Welcome to Reason, I’m greatly looking forward to reading as much if y’all’s content as I can!

  73. I hope Thoreau (T.) shows up here. Or at least Pro Libertate or Jennifer.

    1. Dsve W! OMG, weren’t you banned by reason once upon a time? Something about impersonating one of their writers?

      1. First, “impersonating one of their writers” is not an accurate description of what happened. It was more about people posting under MY handle. Second, it was only a brief suspension, not a ban. Third, and most importantly, I see that Pro Libertate is, indeed, IN THE HOUSE

  74. I’m a little disappointed. WaPo leans left, sometimes comically. Still, its readership is ideologically broader than Reason’s. WaPo hosts news and a range of editorial opinion. Reason, not so much. Though I’m libertarian, I wince at much of the snarky, knee-jerk commentary Reason hosts. Some readers may be less willing to look past the site’s arch reputation. The Conspiracy will introduce ideological variety to Reason. I hope your reputation broadens their audience more than their reputation narrows yours.

    1. If you do not think there is ideological variety in the comments here, you have not been paying much attention

      1. I can’t wait to see what happens when you try to tell Eugene how stupid he is.

  75. So you finally escaped from behind WaPo’s Cash Curtain? Welcome to the free world! I’ll be back!

  76. The only reason I went to the Washington Post was because you guys moved there. I would have been one of the ones that would stay behind the paywall. I did turn off my ad blocker when they asked. Then that was not enough, and they insisted that I pay, but my budget would not allow.

    1. @Carolina Cowboy : delete all cookies, and you’re back in business.

  77. Please understand moving here means Virginia Postrell now hates you. And there are also no female libertarians and we can never have nice things.

    1. Also, every single person on this site is more libertarian than everyone else

      1. And some even more so

    2. There most certainly *are* female Libertarians ๐Ÿ™‚

      This one is impressed with the fact that there has not been one comment so far that consisted of the libido-driven, adolescent level, personal, one-upmanship so common in most Reason comment sections that makes them so uncomfortable to wade through to get to the good ones.

  78. In other words, one can take only so much of life among the vegan pussy snowflakes and their Dem handlers…

  79. Bravo! I’ve been frustrated by the WaPo paywall, and your announcement came just in time to save me from having to buy into the damned thing.

  80. I think this will be a good union for all concerned.

  81. Excellent news. I’ll be reading more now. Using incognito mode was getting old.

  82. The WaPo paywall is still pretty porous. When it says you have reached your limit for the month, go to browser settings and delete all cookies. Voila, back to a clean slate.

  83. Hey, the green banner is back! Looks like 2004!

    So I guess I can cancel my WaPo subscription and donate to Reason now?

    1. Yes, the green banner was quite deliberate.

  84. It is good to be able to read the Conspiracy again.

  85. I am excited about the move. Have been a follower since EV artfully suggested that I might tone down my heated rhetoric back on Cyberia-L, and followed a link in his .sig back to the VC – which was my introduction to the blogosphere. As EV said, initially getting through the paywall wasn’t too bad. But recently, I mostly haven’t been able to. As with others above, I paid for a WaPo subscription for a bit, just for the VC. But it got too expensive for what I was getting, and dropped it. Been some comment threads recently that I wanted to follow, but couldn’t, w/o such a subscription, so missed them. As a result, I was following VC less and less.

    The other thing is that the WaPo Web software, and esp its blogging software, didnt work well with most browsers on my iPads. Loading would fail catastrophically, and I would then have to reload from scratch. Which was compounded by the WaPo software only loading a limited number of comments at a time. Usually, at about the third or fourth batch, I would get one of those catastrophic failures, necessitating starting all over again. The Reason blogging software loaded up the entire comment thread (so far) quickly, and without incidence.

    Thanks for the switch.

  86. Welcome aboard, Professor V and company! I’m excited aboard this, as a longtime reader of both the Conspiracy and the Reason blog but only a commenter here ? now I can discuss the VC articles too!

  87. Hip hip hurray for the use-mention distinction! I’ve loved the idea ever since I learned there existed a name for the basic approach I’ve tried to take to deciding when it is or is not appropriate to deploy words deemed generally and almost intrinsically offensive.

  88. Something like a reverse Glibening.

  89. Dunno if I’m in early enough to get a notice — but on a site-platform matter of question, do you know what plans Reason has to go full HTTPS/HTTPS-only? does exist and it seems like the content mostly mirrors that on but it’s going to take some amount of effort on my part to only use the HTTP site for logging in, and other vaguely-sensitive things like that. For example, when I registered an account, I nearly ran afoul of registering insecurely over HTTP, and I had to manually edit the URL to get to the secured version. Logging in (on the occasion that I do need to log in) is going to be a little hit-or-miss on properly always using the secured version. When is going to go HTTPS-only, with an HSTS policy in place to effectively halt use of the HTTP site?

    1. Dear Nerd,

      Tone it down.


      Sophomoric Reason-Sphere

      1. sticks tongue out in response

  90. I’m neither a lawyer nor a law student but I am a student of the law. Thank you.

  91. Congrats for VC & Reason.

  92. So glad I’ll be able to once again read this often. Thank you for moving!

  93. Yes, yes, yes….ohhhhh yeeeesssss.

  94. > “We’re moving today from The Post to the paywall-free Reason (; should also always forward to wherever we are blogging.”

    It doesn’t (as of now).

    1. Took some more doing than I expected, but try now — I think it should work.

      1. Nope — still goes to the Post.

  95. I hope the relocation to Reason will mean a return of lengthy, thoughtful, more academic posts than had become the norm during the WaPo residency. That was the main thing I missed, from back in the old VC days; contributors wouldn’t shy away from hefty posts just to fit within the pithy lede-grabbing requirements of the WaPo blog-format or to “lure eyeballs” away from whatever sites you were trying to lure them away from. You could open up the old VC and see a wall of text, and settle in to read some thoughtful analysis.

    But format, site, is nothing. You need to get some of your old contributors more involved again. Orin is hardly around any more. And your looney tunes always provided some comic relief.

  96. Welcome Eugene! In all seriousness, this move will be good for everyone involved and I can’t wait to get back to reading your stuff more regularly. It took too much time to get around the paywall on wapo to read your stuff consistently. Christmas come early!

  97. I just hope I’m not too late to ruin everything.

    1. Early is your forte, ask your wife.

      You do bring brevity and additional sophomoric humor, which is nice

  98. Bernstein will be at home here.

    Pity Prof. Kerr, but he chose the fleas.

  99. BRAVO and WELCOME!! Your blog has been essential to my sanity for years, and the Post’s increasingly intrusive blocking of content has been infuriating . Both Reason and the Volokh Conspiracy blog are my main go-to sources for a non-partisan (but pro-freedom) angle on issues that matter to me. You have made my day!

  100. I join Scott Greenfield in saying “welcome back” and “Fuck WaPo.”

  101. I have been reading the blog for a long, long, time, back when there were only a few conspirators. I did not like the move to WaPo, even though I read it regularly, and I see this move as a step in the right direction.

    On a lighter note, does this mean we can look forward to a resumption of baseball and music posts?

  102. What? No Avatars?
    I forget the name of the original comment system of the independent conspiracy but then VC used Disqus, then the move to WaPo and their system, now this. I am adaptable.

    1. Oh, no edit after submit. Ooops. But there is a preview button. Must drill myself to preview before submit.
      bold italic underscore strike
      must remember to use html code and not BB [b]bold [i]italic[/i][/b] [u]underscore[/u] [s]strike[/s]

  103. I had the honor of having a free speech case I was involved in (Pro Se) versus the education establishment get critiqued by the Volokh Blog. Unhappily, I was late to that party, and not all the facts were readily discernible (partly my fault due to improper highlighting of some evidence), so the discussion went far off from what was actually said and done, how and where it was said and done, and failed to accurately address my motivation, or that of the Dean of that dept (an email about my conduct commented “he’s going to cost the department money”).

    I provided an explanation, and submitted my briefing, and several areas of concern were promptly addressed, along with a personal note to me.

    I really appreciated that, and have often gone to articles and other resources provided since, because I am a habitual agitator and anti-establishment PIA without formal training, and so value the insight into ways of thinking about the law presented there (and now here).

    Good luck to you, Eugene, and thanks for your work.

  104. Very happy to see you here. The WaPo paywall significantly decreased my visits to your site. Best of luck.

  105. Glad to see the move. Been reading since way back and I liked the previous format better than WaPo. Unfortunately the formatting at Reason is even worse. Can you see about reducing white space for wider monitors, setting aside the author so it’s more visible, and maybe it’s just me, but I really liked the images associated with the articles.

  106. Well, this is welcome news! I’m a fairly recent WaPo subscriber- couldn’t reliably get my Balko and Volokh fixes otherwise- but even if I stay one I’m happy that more people can read the Volokh Conspirators.

    There are enough people spreading stupid about the law on the in-ter-nets that it’s good to have sane and reasonable voices to counter them.

  107. Actually, if you spoke to my wife, she wouldn’t get the reference s— or c—, because English is not her first language and such things are not obvious to her, although f— she’d get. She’s seen that one before.

    Tell Ann and Vladimir that Tracy says “Hello” and how is her new cookbook coming?

  108. At this point I’m sure this comment may not be seen, but any chance you can change the formatting back to the Post format. Specifically that there is a header with a link and a short description rather than the entire article.

  109. It’s like peanut butter and chocolate!

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