Type of site
|Sports, popular culture|
|Launched||March 14, 2016|
The Ringer was launched in March 2016 by Bill Simmons, who brought along several editors who had previously worked with him on Grantland, an ESPN-owned blog he operated from 2011 to 2015. At launch, the Ringer had a staff of 43 and focused primarily on sports and pop culture as content areas, with a few writers also working on technology and politics. HBO, the network on which Simmons hosted his weekly television program Any Given Wednesday one season in 2016, was an initial investor in the website.
The website was previously published on the Medium platform. In May 2017, The Ringer entered into an advertising and technology partnership with Vox Media (owner of SB Nation), under which Vox would handle advertising sales, and give the site access to its in-house publishing platform.
Former Grantland writers who have since written for or worked for The Ringer include Mark Titus, Shea Serrano, Ben Lindbergh, Robert Mays, Sean Fennessey, Chris Ryan, Mallory Rubin, Juliet Litman, Craig Gaines, Bryan Curtis, David Shoemaker, Ryan O'Hanlon, Danny Chau, Jason Concepcion, Riley McAtee, Joe Fuentes, and Tate Frazier.
In May 2018, The Ringer published a story by Ben Detrick about Bryan Colangelo, then the GM of the Philadelphia 76ers, and his apparent use of various Twitter accounts to criticize players and/or defend himself. This led to Colangelo's resignation on June 7, 2018.
On February 5, 2020, subscription music streaming service Spotify announced it was acquiring The Ringer for an estimated $195 million and an additional $50 million in performance-driven incentives. Spotify chief content officer Dawn Ostroff stated that Simmons was "one of the brightest minds in the game and he has successfully innovated as a writer and content creator across mediums and platforms."
Like the content on the website, the Ringer's podcast network covers both sports and pop culture. The flagship podcast, The Bill Simmons Podcast, is an interview show hosted by Simmons, featuring other Ringer writers and podcast hosts as well as athletes, filmmakers, comedians, and pop culture figures. Popular podcast hosts include former Daily Show correspondent Larry Wilmore (host of Black on the Air) and James Beard Award-winning chef David Chang (The Dave Chang Show).
Former podcasts include Keepin' it 1600, a politics podcast featuring former Obama speechwriters Jon Favreau, Dan Pfeiffer, and others. After leaving the Ringer, the hosts of Keepin' it 1600 created a new podcast called Pod Save America as part of their own new media company, Crooked Media.
In 2017, The Ringer began the video podcast series Talk the Thrones, an aftershow for Game of Thrones hosted by Ringer staff writers and live-streamed on Twitter. Talk the Thrones is a continuation of After the Thrones, which aired on HBO.
As of April 30, 2018, The Ringer's world-wide Alexa ranking is 2,077 with over 15 million views per month. Of those, 6,150,000 are unique visitors.
The list of podcasts offered as of August 2021. The Ringer podcast network features a slate of more than 30 podcasts. Since being acquired by Spotify in February 2020, The Ringer has continued to publish its podcasts across platforms while promoting additional shows that are exclusive to Spotify.
- The Bill Simmons Podcast
- The Ryen Russillo Podcast
- The Rewatchables
- Higher Learning
- The Ringer NBA Show
- The Ringer-Verse
- Book of Basketball 2.0
- The Ringer NFL Show
- The Ringer Fantasy Football Show
- 10 Questions With Kyle Brandt
- New York, New York
- The Mismatch
- Binge Mode
- The Hottest Take
- The Big Picture
- The Watch
- Flying Coach
- No Skips With Jinx and Shea
- 60 Songs That Explain the '90s
- Gene and Roger
- The Ringer Guide to the Summer Games
- What If? The Len Bias Story
- Black Girl Songbook
- Every Single Album: Taylor Swift
- The Ringer Music Show
- Bachelor Party
- Larry Wilmore: Black on the Air
- The Bakari Sellers Podcast
- Wrighty's House
- The Dave Chang Show
- The Press Box
- Sports Cards Nonsense
- Baseball BBQ
- The Ringer MLB Show
- TV Concierge
- 'The Wire': Way Down in the Hole
- Sound Only
- Boom/Bust: The Rise and Fall of HQ Trivia
- The Cam Chronicles
- The Rugby Pod
- The Masked Man Show
- Jam Session
- Tea Time
- Fairway Rollin'
- Recipe Club
- Sonic Boom
- "About The Ringer". The Ringer. Retrieved 2017-07-28.
- Edgers, Geoff; Edgers, Geoff (2016-06-01). "Bill Simmons's new site, The Ringer, goes live. And please, don't call it just another Grantland". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2017-07-28.
- Robertson, Katie; Scheiber, Noam (2020-02-05). "Spotify Is Buying The Ringer". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2020-02-05.
- Lichty, Edward (2016-02-23). "Medium: Home of The Ringer". Medium. Retrieved 2016-02-23.
- Spangler, Todd (2017-05-30). "Bill Simmons' The Ringer Inks Advertising, Tech Pact With Vox Media". Variety. Retrieved 2017-07-28.
- Kalaf, Samer. "Bill Simmons's New Site Has A Name And Some New Hires". Deadspin. Retrieved 2017-07-28.
- "The Curious Case of Bryan Colangelo and the Secret Twitter Account".
- "Bryan Colangelo resigns as president of 76ers".
- Spangler, Todd. "The Ringer Management Recognizes Union Representation by Writers Guild of America East". Variety. Retrieved 2019-09-03.
- "Spotify to Pay as Much as $195M for Bill Simmons' The Ringer | Hollywood Reporter". www.hollywoodreporter.com. Retrieved 2020-12-02.
- "Spotify is buying The Ringer to boost its sports podcast content". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2020-02-05.
- "The Ringer Podcast Network – The Ringer". The Ringer. 2016-05-02. Retrieved 2017-07-28.
- "'Keeping It 1600' Podcast's Obama Alums Launch New Show and 'Crooked Media' Company". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2018-04-28.
- "Facebook, Twitter and Apple get into the television business". The Economist. Retrieved 2017-08-25.
- "Game of Thrones aftershow 'Talk the Thrones' picked up by Twitter". The Independent. 2017-06-14. Retrieved 2018-04-28.
- Borelli, Renan (2019-01-30). "The Hit Podcasters Breaking Down Harry Potter, Chapter by Chapter". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2019-04-17.
- "theringer.com info". HypeStat. 2018-04-30. Retrieved 2018-04-28.
- Hughes, Travis (2018-02-21). "The Ringer Podcast Network". The Ringer. Retrieved 2021-08-20.