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A ‘New’ National Review

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Embracing the old and innovating with an eye towards the future

Editor’s Note: The following is a note from National Review publisher E. Garrett Bewkes IV on the launch of National Review’s new website.

Welcome to the new, a website and community of conservative thought 62 years in the making. So, why the change (I mean, aside from all the complaints of slow load times, computers crashing, and iPhones turning into hand warmers when on our website)?

Over the last year and a half, we here at National Review realized that since our founding in 1955, the National Review brand has become so much more than a publication. So much more than just a name or a company. National Review represents, and is, a vibrant community of intellectuals and knowledge-thirsty people who support, or at the very least want to learn from, the sharing of conservative analysis and ideas. This, of course, holds true for our writers and editors, but also for our audience. It was time we built a website that engages this community and helps it thrive.

It has taken incredible efforts, from fundraising among this incredible community of supporters (you, our loyal and beloved community) to seemingly endless strategic and manual labor demanding the blood, sweat, and tears of my poor colleagues who put up with my scatterbrained ideas and “burnt the midnight oil.” To my pleasant surprise, I think we assembled a team of masochists; they all kept adding to the idea boards without hesitation over what it would mean for their work-life balance, and now we have this insanely awesome new website — thanks, team!

Okay, so aside from a modern website that still works on a Windows ’97 operating system, what does this all really mean for you, the community? At the most basic level, National Review’s new site allows us to showcase the best of our top-notch journalism all at once, while maintaining a clean and clear path from article to article, video to video, and, well, you get the picture — Oh, yeah! We have those too, now in a really great photo section designed to give you the best possible HD viewing experience.

Be sure to check out all the new multimedia sections from podcasts to videos. We will even look to expand our content, beginning with breaking news, and, well, I’ll let the editors unveil their plans when they’re ready.

Have a particular author you like to read each day? Or perhaps a particular subject matter you want to catch up on? With our clean and easy-to-use navigation menu (accessable at the top right of our site in the header next to our name), you can go directly to beautifully curated topic and author pages with all of the works by that author or on that topic presented in chronological order.

This new website offers you a National Review built for you, the user, with your best interests — and according to all of the fan/hate mail we’ve seen, desires and needs — in mind.

But the “new” is capable of so much more now. Which brings me to the even bigger announcement (drum roll, please . . . ): the launch of NRPlus.

What is NRPlus, you say? I thought you’d never ask!

NRPlus is the new gateway portal that allows unlimited access to our premium magazine content that was previously paywalled. Okay, so maybe you are thinking, “Cool dude [sarcasm], you are just renaming your subscription product.” But alas, you would be wrong! NRPlus will offer members archived content from our print publication, podcast shows, cartoons, and, as we begin to roll them out over the coming months, video shows.

But wait, there’s more! NRPlus also offers you, the community, the ability to engage in the exchange of healthy and lively debate (respectful, too, let’s keep it PG — err — 13 here, people!) through a custom-built and awesomely powerful commenting tool onsite, in addition to an invitation to a bustling private Facebook group. Yes, no longer will the trolls of the digital ecosphere be able to muddy our pages and offend our community with verbal diarrhea and potty mouths!

But that’s not all, folks! The NRPlus community will also get to listen in on quarterly conference calls featuring live interviews and conversations with writers, editors, and other thought leaders across our community. That’s right, you can actually experience the editors and contributors agreeing (or disagreeing) with each other before content is penned — which also means you’ll be getting early insights and hearing analysis and opinions straight from the editors’ mouths!

Oh, wait! I am not even close to done: There’s more! Do any of you, by chance, dislike advertisements, such as “in-content-video,” following you all over the Web, often shifting content around as you try to read? Or maybe you just can’t stand those silly, at times salacious, content recommendations at the bottom of every page. NRPlus members will also see barely any ads, with up to a 90 percent reduced ad experience (it’s actually, at times, a lot more than 90 percent, but I didn’t feel like getting the lawyers involved), including the removal of in-content video and offsite content recommendations (you might have come to know these as “click-bait”).

You thought that was it? Nope! The NRPlus members will also receive early access and discounts to NR events, and coming soon, our eStore, which we plan to stock full with books, National Review paraphernalia, and more!

Okay, so now that’s it. You got me — I’m spent! But this is just the beginning. We don’t just have hopes; we have actual plans to continue to grow the NRPlus community and the value proposition of being an NRPlus member.

Okay, enough of me! Get joining the NRPlus community by subscribing here. Not sure you are ready to make the leap to membership yet? We get it. So, start reading. And watching. And listening. Our metered paywall will indicate what is “locked” content and how much free sampling you are able to consume of it each month via a bar at the bottom of those pages. Original online content will remain free and open as it always has been before.

Last, but certainly not least, seeing evolve into this next iteration has been an incredible process and has required an enormous cross-company team behind all of our design, innovation, and implementation efforts. This team has undertaken this endeavor with enthusiasm and care. I’m going to list some of them here, because they are so awesome: Alley Interactive, BlueConic, CDS Global, ProCirc, JW Player, Chris McEvoy, Jarreau Weber, Ryan Molly, Grant DeArmitt, Scott McKim, Dan Rudolf, Chris Gaine, Russ Jenkins, Jim Fowler, Kevin Longstreet, Jim Kilbridge, Katherine Howell, Charlie Cooke, and Rich Lowry. Of course, I also want to give a huge shout out to all those who made this possible from NR, NRI, and beyond, especially our donors, board members, and anyone else I may be leaving out here.

From all of us here at National Review, thank you, thank you, thank you, a million times thank you to all of you who have stuck with us through the years, attended our events, donated to our cause, and shared us with your friends and family. We love you all, and cannot wait to continue improving National Review and proving why is the place to be for all conservatives (and anyone who wants to keep up with what conservatives think).

Welcome all, and as my colleague Charles C. W. Cooke likes to say, “Cheers!”