The Moderate Voice was founded in December 2003 by journalist/entertainer Joe Gandelman as a personal weblog that would offer an independent voter’s irreverent comments, and serious analysis of events, issues and people in the news. A prime guiding principle was that differing ideas don’t give people brain cancer, so from the start TMV linked to Democratic, Republican, liberal, conservative and centrist blogs. It also put a special emphasis on linking to blogs written by “independent thinkers” of any (or no) party who sought to discuss issues and promote dialogue rather than hype specific candidates or repeat talk show (of the left and right) talking points.
Since then, TMV has grown into one of the Internet’s fastest growing and respected group moderate/centrist sites. And it hopes to grow more in coming years.
Some facts about TMV today:
(1) TMV seeks to offer thoughtful and detailed discussions of the issues, events and personalities in the news.
(2) TMV offers its diverse readership news articles, news article posts, original reporting, opinion and analysis posts, plus videos and editorial cartoons.
(3) TMV is NOT affiliated with any political party and will not be endorsing any candidates- although co-writers may indicate their preference for one candidate or another and are free to endorse candidates on their own websites.
(4) TMV seeks to offer readers a wide variety of news and blog links from different perspectives. It is NOT interested in getting into “blogwars.” Its writers as a rule will NOT be blasting other bloggers or weblogs because they have different ideas. Rather, we will often quote and link to writers with different ideas to show that their ideas may differ from ours.
(5) TMV offers readers a blogroll that is a virtual menu of different right, left, center and other voices — links that are not offered because we necessarily agree with a site’s content, but because they offer varying perspectives. The TMV blogroll is a WORKING blogroll that is used to help write this site.
(6) TMV’s writers come from diverse viewpoints and are not monolithic in their views. Our team of writers comes from five countries. Writers boast various backgrounds (several TMV writers worked in the mainstream news media). Just as political polls do NOT show that all centrists and moderates agree on positions, you will NOT see all TMV writers agreeing on all issues. Our writers include people who are center, center left, and center right — and any writer at any given time may fall into a different category, depending on the issue. That’s because moderates will often evaluate new information, which could change their opinion.
(7) TMV seeks to seriously strengthen and nurture the blogosphere’s centrist and moderate websites by linking to them when we can. These sites often don’t get links to the big blogs on the left and right because they are not liberal or conservative enough for them. Similarly, TMV is grateful when it is also linked to by others, so that we also share in the readership of other sites in the moderate/independent/centrist “community.”
(8) TMV and its writers realize there are excellent liberal and conservative blogs that add meaningful depth to the debate of issues so it will not only be linking to centrist and moderate blogs but thoughtful writers of ALL political persuasions.
(9) TMV offers a comments area for discussion of posts by our writers. Our Commenters’ Rules are at the top of the masthead. Our writers are Moderates, centrists and independents. They may or may not list points on each side. They often will reach conclusions, take positions, sometimes advocate a position passionately — and vote. Posts on this site reflect these facts. Indeed, John Avlon’s book Independent Nation chronicles how this has been a fact about moderates and independents throughout U.S. history.
(10) Comments under posts are to be civil discussion and commentary. We have moved over the years to take delight in that many of our commenters have also been encouraged to teach and to tell vignettes of their own lives in comments. We have as a result a unique position in the commenting world online; of substantive ideas and offerings in comments from a diverse cross section of persons. The comments are to pertain to the topic of the post, not to the writer, or other commenters or administrators of this site. Commenters often find much parity with one another on our site. ‘Disagreeing without being disagreeable’ is what we hold to. Baiting, ad hominem attacks etc, attempts to disparage other commenters/writers/admin/ are not held to here. We reserve the right to edit, shorten, delete comments not in keeping with our rules. Commenters are expected to read and follow our very few posted commenting guidelines which, among other things, prohibit racist/sexist comments, cross-posted comments, and/or bitter personal attacks against writers, commenters or admins on this site.
(11) The Moderate Voice will occasionally run Guest Voice posts written by readers, writers who don’t have weblogs, or some writers who have sites but want to do a special post. Guest blog posts do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Moderate Voice or its writers but are an attempt to widen the dialogue on various world and breaking issues.
(12) TMV will NOT only be covering politics and is NOT just a “political site.” It also will offer ORIGINAL REPORTING, new features, reviews and other articles about popular culture. Its subject matter will be as diverse as that of a daily newspaper or a news magazine.