How Bill Simmons Came Up With the Name for His New Website

“The Ringer. Easy to spell. Easy to say. Easy to remember,” the Grantland founder says

Fans of the now defunct Grantland have been patiently waiting for Bill Simmons’ newest project to get off the ground. Today, Simmons explained the process behind the name of that project, The Ringer, in the site’s debut newsletter.

“The Ringer? The Ringer. Easy to spell. Easy to say. Easy to remember,” Simmons wrote before admitting that the name “frightened” him for two reasons: It’s the name of a Johnny Knoxville comedy about the Special Olympics, and “If you look at theringer.com too fast, it looks like a Santa Barbara wine called Theringer.”

The Ringer was chosen “partly because we liked it and partly out of pure, unadulterated desperation,” according to Simmons.

Simmons goes on to explain that his team considered, but eventually wrote off, names such as “The Curve,” “Dauntless,” “Parachute,” “The Route,” “Corners,” “Fathom,” “The Hot Hand,” “The Hook” and “Upside.”

The Ringer announced new hires to coincide with the launch of its newsletter: Katie Baker (Staff Writer), Jason Concepcion (Staff Writer), Allison P. Davis (Staff Writer), Jason Gallagher (Social Media, Video), Sam Donsky (Staff Writer), Alison Herman (Staff Writer), Molly McHugh (Articles Editor), Sam Schube (Associate Editor) Megan Schuster (Researcher), Jonathan Tjarks (Staff Writer), and Lindsay Zoladz (Staff Writer).

The new set of hires joins the team that was announced last month: Sean Fennessey (Editor-in-Chief), Chris Ryan (Executive Editor), Mallory Rubin (Deputy Editor), Juliet Litman (Managing Editor), Amanda Dobbins (Deputy Editor, Culture), Craig Gaines (Copy Chief), Bryan Curtis (Editor-at-Large), Ryan O’Hanlon (Articles Editor), Danny Chau (Associate Editor), Riley McAtee (Assistant Editor), Joe Fuentes (Digital Audio Director) and Tate Frazier (Assistant Producer, Digital Audio).

The site is scheduled to launch in late Spring/early Summer.

Simmons started The Bill Simmons Podcast Network last October, but with the new name, it will now be called The Ringer Podcast Network. The podcast has already been downloaded over 35 million times.