Sean Hannity vs. Free Republic

Two messages in my e-mail inbox this morning had very different takes on a controversy over Sean Hannity referring to Free Republic as a “fringe” site on his radio show yesterday. Audio here.

PunditGuy Bill sides with Hannity:

The freepers are freakin nuts. There are over 2,500 comments on [the FR thread on the Hannity comments] now. It’s getting seriously kooky over there.

Kevin McCullough disagrees:

He has big numbers on radio, He’s on the most watched – most trusted news channel on cable, He has two very big selling books to his name…but he’s gone and stepped in it big time. […] He doesn’t feel its necessary to reach out to those conservatives who do take their issues seriously (Freepers). […] This will not sit well with bloggers…

While “fringe” is an overused word, I would have to concur with Hannity and PunditGuy that FR qualifies, at least in the conversational sense of the word. It’s certainly not a forum for reasoned debate. Further, I don’t think FR is, in any meaningful sense, a blog. It’s a community message board.

I do agree with KMC, though, that Hannity’s calling his website “a blog” demonstrates a certain cluelessness.

FILED UNDER: Blogosphere, Media
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Myopic Zeal says:

    Sean Hannity’s Freeper Fiasco
    Looks like Sean Hannity has stirred a hornets nest over at Free Republic with his comments from yesterday.

    Sean Hannity is promoting his message board and in part compares it to Free Republic. He then tells a story about how years ago he used to fo…

  2. Hannity says FReepers eat their own; FReepers strike back
    Syndicated radio and Fox News Channel host Sean Hannity accused denizens of Free Republic of being fringe folks who “eating their own” on his radio show yesterday, which brought down the ire of many on the popular conservative forum.Many on…

  3. Steve says:

    Yeah it is a fringe site. I’ve seen some pretty weird conversations, and some that have turned my stomach. They might not be as deep down the slide to kookiness as Democratic Underground, but they are near the bottom portion of the slide for sure.