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He’s doing a live AMA in my city in two days. I can’t fucking wait.

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-12 points · 20 hours ago

Yep. Come say hi.

I find it kind of weird, you know, that you’re responding to this comment in a thread which criticizes you heavily for ignoring some major issues.

It seems clear to me the commentator you respond to is saying he can’t wait for your live AMA because you won’t be able to ignore the obvious /r/t_d questions you are here and in your earlier AMA.

So your comment here, while innocent on a surface level... sort of feels a little taunting, you know? And that worries me.

Because you’re either intentionally taunting users... or you’re just a little tone deaf on how to communicate with the userbase.

Ultimately I love Reddit, despite the shortcomings and current issues it faces... but this sort of behavior worries me a little bit. I’m looking forward to seeing what you bring to the table in the future, though. I’m optimistic for the future of this corner of the internet.

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-7 points · 12 hours ago

Sure, I can see how one would interpret it that way. Let me provide another way of looking at things:

Whether in an AMA or interview or in person, not only am I happy to answer hard questions, I generally look forward to it. It's in my nature to do so, often to my own detriment (example), but I do look for questions that meet two criteria: questions that are asked politely, and asked in a manner that suggests the questioner will actually attempt to listen to my response (even if we have zero chance of agreeing).

In my AMA yesterday, I didn't see much of either, especially as it relates to r/the_donald. I did attempt to leave a couple responses on the topic, and I have attempted to other respond many times in the past, but since my answer is never "yep, they're getting banned," I end up buried. So it goes.

It's really isn't my intention to ignore people. I'll probably do another AMA in the near future, and if someone wants to ask simply "why don't you ban r/the_donald?" I'll do my best to answer honestly and politely, though my answer will probably look a lot like this.

Anyway, long story short, if u/2Grateful2BHateful or any of you want to say Hi this weekend, I'm more than happy to chat about this or anything else. It'll be fine, might even be pleasant.


Update: I've got to take off for now. I hear the anger today, and I get it. I hope you take that anger straight to the polls next month. You may not be able to vote me out, but you can vote everyone else out.

Hello again!

It’s been a minute since my last post here, so I wanted to take some time out from our usual product and policy updates, meme safety reports, and waiting for r/livecounting to reach 10,000,000 to share some highlights from the past few months and talk about our plans for the months ahead.

We started off the quarter with a win for net neutrality, but as always, the fight against the Dark Side continues, with Europe passing a new copyright directive that may strike a real blow to the open internet. Nevertheless, we will continue to fight for the open internet (and occasionally pester you with posts encouraging you to fight for it, too).

We also had a lot of fun fighting for the not-so-free but perfectly balanced world of r/thanosdidnothingwrong. I’m always amazed to see redditors so engaged with their communities that they get Snoo tattoos.

Speaking of bans, you’ve probably noticed that over the past few months we’ve banned a few subreddits and quarantined several more. We don't take the banning of subreddits lightly, but we will continue to enforce our policies (and be transparent with all of you when we make changes to them) and use other tools to encourage a healthy ecosystem for communities. We’ve been investing heavily in our Anti-Evil and Trust & Safety teams, as well as a new team devoted solely to investigating and preventing efforts to interfere with our site, state-sponsored and otherwise. We also recognize the ways that redditors themselves actively help flag potential suspicious actors, and we’re working on a system to allow you all to report directly to this team.

On the product side, our teams have been hard at work shipping countless updates to our iOS and Android apps, like universal search and News. We’ve also expanded Chat on mobile and desktop and launched an opt-in subreddit chat, which we’ve already seen communities using for game-day discussions and chats about TV shows. We started testing out a new hub for OC (Original Content) and a Save Drafts feature (with shared drafts as well) for text and link posts in the redesign.

Speaking of which, we’ve made a ton of improvements to the redesign since we last talked about it in April.

Including but not limited to… night mode, user & post flair improvements, better traffic pages for

mods, accessibility improvements, keyboard shortcuts, a bunch of new community widgets, fixing key AutoMod integrations, and the ability to have community styling show up on mobile as well, which was one of the main reasons why we took on the redesign in the first place. I know you all have had a lot of feedback since we first launched it (I have too). Our teams have poured a tremendous amount of work into shipping improvements, and their #1 focus now is on improving performance. If you haven’t checked it out in a while, I encourage you to give it a spin.

Last but not least, on the community front, we just wrapped our second annual Moderator Thank You Roadshow, where the rest of the admins and I got the chance to meet mods in different cities, have a bit of fun, and chat about Reddit. We also launched a new Mod Help Center and new mod tools for Chat and the redesign, with more fun stuff (like Modmail Search) on the way.

Other than that, I can’t imagine we have much to talk about, but I’ll hang to around some questions anyway.


2.6k points · 1 day ago

1) Can you please stop pushing the redesign so hard?

2) Can you stop the "Download the app" popups showing up so frequently on mobile?

3) Can you stop employing dark patterns such as this ? Email is optional and should be made clear.

4) Can you remove the orange coloured chat icon next to my inbox?

Complaining aside, I continue to enjoy reddit, thanks!

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Reddit admin, speaking officiallyOriginal Poster-534 points · 1 day ago · edited 1 day ago

1) What are you referring to? Only new users see it by default. Most everyone else needs to opt in.

2) They've been gone a while, but we are chasing down an issue with incognito users seeing it more often. Please let me know if that's the case, or if you are having a different experience.*

3) Historically it has been optional, and it technically still is, though we're reconsidering it. While I was the original proponent of no-emails, we've found it to be problematic for a couple of reasons over the years: lost account passwords take time for our team to resolve, no emails makes tracking abuse more difficult, and there's more pressure than ever to fight such abuse, and it's generally helpful to be able to reach users where they are with important notifications.

4) Have heard this one before, and we're considering a couple other approaches. I didn't notice myself because my icons are always orange.

*Update: there was a lingering experiment that is now turned off.

803 points · 1 day ago · edited 1 day ago

2) They've been gone a while, but we are chasing down an issue with incognito users seeing it more often. Please let me know if that's the case, or if you are having a different experience.

Mobile app prompts have been gone for a while? I see an aggressive prompt EVERY TIME I use Reddit on iOS Safari, not incognito.

There are some mild prompts, but the big issue is the full-screen popup that appears every time I try to click on comments. I must click "Not Now" on this modal every time I refresh Reddit or visit an external link. It does not remember my preference at all.

Here are screenshots:

Have someone on your team try to use Reddit's mobile website for a week and see what they think.

[I get that you want to encourage people to use the mobile app where you can offer a smoother and more powerful experience [and where ad blockers often don't work...] but the current approach is extreme. Even showing the "USE MOBILE!!!111" popup once every 24 hours instead of once per refresh would be a welcome improvement. Also, the mobile website's frequent "Something went wrong" errors, loss of scroll position, and flakey video/gif playback is the main reason I use the mobile app at all when I do]

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Reddit admin, speaking officiallyOriginal Poster656 points · 1 day ago · edited 1 day ago

Got it. Annoying. Will follow up on this.

Update: there was a lingering experiment that is now turned off.

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11 points · 9 days ago

Back when /r/science hosted AMAs, collections would have been perfect for organizing our themed AMA weeks.

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Reddit admin, speaking officially17 points · 9 days ago

We hope so. r/science AMAs were one of the inspirations for this feature. The idea is you can create a landing page for an AMA days before the event to build up excitement, and then bring everybody back at the same time for the actual event.

123 points · 2 months ago

Can we still ping /u/spez? And oops.

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288 points · 2 months ago

I can handle it.

We have been trying to get in touch with the Reddit admins regarding our API issue but haven’t yet received any response in return.

/u/Spez I've come to bargain.

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121 points · 2 months ago

I believe the infra team is swamped with Official Business right now. I’ll bring it up when they come up for air.

197 points · 3 months ago

There are also a bunch of examples of users guessing wrong, which created all sorts of hilarious confusion.

The first version of text posts required the user to type “self” in the url field to create it automatically.

These days, text posts make up about half Reddit’s submissions. Beyond subreddits and comments, it was probably the most significant feature we built.

Reddit admin, speaking officially259 points · 4 months ago

You might be right. We noticed this too and have been looking into it. We will have more to share soon.

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295 points · 4 months ago

Dang I was just writing a reply to this as well. Guess we got the same push notif.

Reddit admin, speaking officially201 points · 4 months ago

Our accounts are 13 years old today, but I believe Reddit itself didn't launch for another two weeks or so. Thank you nevertheless!

Can you please ban r/funny ? They aren't as funny as they think they are!

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Reddit admin, speaking officially291 points · 4 months ago

We investigate this community often but have not found it to be in violation of our content policy. We will reach out to the mods as needed about enforcing their own rules (specifically Rule 0: All posts must make an attempt at humor).

28 points · 4 months ago

I was just about the tell the team about this one as well. Underlining markdown links would be nice. For some themes, the color choices make links in comments and posts basically invisible.

Reddit admin, speaking officially64 points · 4 months ago

The ads will change. While they will stay inline, we are going to try a few more versions. The trade off of course is that if they stand out too much, they’re distracting, if they are too subtle, they’re deceptive. We’re trying to find the right balance.

I'll spare you our excuses for while we haven't been more responsive on this particular topic, but suffice to say we can do better on the communication, and I'll work on that as well.

130 points · 4 months ago

I’ve given that sort of feedback to newbies many times. If you put the code online somewhere or PM it to me, I’d be happy to take a look.

hi Boss. meta question: do reddit engineers go on reddit during work hours?

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74 points · 4 months ago

You mean QA-ing our product?

Reddit admin, speaking officially51 points · 4 months ago

I left a longer explanation in that thread, but the gist of it is r/science isn't a default anymore and their tactic of removing more popular posts to promote AMAs is not allowed.

The "best" sort should actually help communities like r/science get more visibility. That's the whole point. Though it's not really relevant right now since their AMA shenanigans predate any algorithm changes.

17.0k points · 4 months ago

Wonder if u/spez cares that Reddit is losing a well loved feature.

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Reddit admin, speaking officially1.6k points · 4 months agox4 · edited 4 months ago

The decision for r/science to no longer host AMAs is disappointing, and blaming us at Reddit is counterproductive.

u/nallen, having met you personally a number of times and after personally trying to work through this issue with you over the past months, I'm disappointed you've taken this approach to mislead your community about what's going on.

So here's what's really going on:

How it used to work

r/science used to be a default community, which means it was one of one hundred communities that made up the front page of Reddit for most of 2011–2016. As a result, r/science and the other defaults had high visibility at the expense of non-default communities.

r/science used to promote AMAs by removing other more popular posts so that the AMA could be top of r/science without the votes. This, combined with being a default community, sent a lot of traffic to these AMAs.

How it works today

We replaced the defaults with r/popular, which is basically a SFW version of r/all. This puts all communities on an equal footing.

We don't allow the post manipulation for obvious reasons. Here is a discussion we had with u/nallen on this topic months ago.

We are indeed testing new sorting algorithms, but if anything they should help communities like r/science get more visibility. One of our engineers recently wrote a pretty good post about it.

Going forward

Regardless of u/nallen's decision, we will continue to work to improve our onboarding and sorting so that users get to see more of what they love, and we have in mind some specific features that will help promote "event" posts (AMAs, game threads, episode threads) in the future.

Reddit admin, speaking officially61 points · 4 months ago

You can use the old layout indefinitely. Go to and uncheck "use the redesign as my default experience." I know the prefs page is a bit of a mess. It's one of the things we're rebuilding in the redesign. We have no plans to turn off

As for why:

  1. New tech stack. The existing codebase is nearly impossible to build in. The redesign gives us a modern platform in which to develop. In the redesign we're able to ship lots of stuff every week. Here's our most recent update.
  2. Easier to use. r2, our name for the legacy site, is quite difficult to grok. We see and lose a lot of potential users every day because they don't know wtf Reddit is. Engagement in our native apps is 2–5x higher even though the content is identical. Part of this is due to the phone form factor, but part of this is do to a more visceral UI.
  3. Adapt Reddit to its content. When r2 was built, Reddit was 100% outbound links and self-posts. Today, we have a lot more media and have plans to add more post types. The UI should support that.
  4. Ads. In-feed ads are what advertisers want to buy. Yes, they're in-feed, which I know isn't popular, but it also means our top post is an organic post now instead of an ad. We will continue to iterate on the styling.
  5. Perception. We will no longer have to explain our ancient UI to potential partners, which really was quite a hurdle. Reddit being synonymous with "old and difficult to use" isn't good for business.
  6. Portable styles. I know there's a lot of heat around this one as well, but structured styles allow community styling to work across platforms, which is important given the majority of our traffic today is mobile. It also makes community styling easier and therefore more accessible to more communities.

We've still got a lot to do, but we started rolling it out because we decided it was good enough to get going, and if we waited until it was perfect, we'd never ship. Plus, having the user base providing constant "feedback" is highly motivating to the team.

Personally, I've switched my desktop Reddit-ing to the redesign and am pretty happy. I'd encourage folks to give it a try. If you don't like it, opt-out and hopefully check back in in a month. It's updating rapidly.

89 points · 4 months ago

Yes. The "Best" sort on your home feed is the new version of the algorithm(s). We're constantly running tests here with the goal of surfacing content from your subscriptions that you're more likely to engage with. It also removes content you've already seen, which creates the appearance of much faster turnover.

The old algorithm, which was effectively a random selection of top posts from your subscriptions, is still accessible under "Hot."

Is there going to be an effort to communicate these changes with the wider user base? Additionally I find on social media websites with similar ways of filtering content it creates a sort of feedback loop where one page or group ends up dominating your timeline and crowding everything else out, hopefully you guys have come up with some ways of mitigating this effect.

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18 points · 4 months ago

Here's one of the discussions from when we first started rolling it out.

As for creating a feedback loop, Reddit is different from other sites in that your Home feed is comprised of communities to which you've explicitly subscribed, which makes that effect less likely to happen unless a user intentionally does it to themselves. That said, we do look at others online as cautionary tales.

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Oh boy! Can't wait to say all the positive things about the Reddit Redesign directly to u/spez's face

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120 points · 4 months ago

If you’re not being sarcastic, I’m looking forward to it!

But if you are being sarcastic, I’m looking forward to it!

73 points · 5 months ago

We don't actually know. There are a handful of testing accounts that predate both of them, but we didn't store timestamps back then so all we know is that both were created on the same day.

19 points · 5 months ago

Honest question, did you run the design visually past anyone other than the admins? Is anybody actually telling you that the new design looks good?

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Reddit admin, speaking officially0 points · 5 months ago

We've had thousands of testers over the past year of pretty much every variety: users, non-users, in-person, remote, prototypes, real code, quantitative, and qualitative. This in addition to the long-running alpha with thousands of users for the past six months, and now the slow roll out to real users and optional opt-in for many more.

Wired wrote a really good piece about the whole process, and we wrote a couple posts about it as well.

29 points · 5 months ago

Again though, did people actually like it? Like from a business standpoint, it's obvious why y'all are doing this - and I know /r/redesign is going to be biased as fuck, and perhaps all the positive sentiments about it are getting downvoted, but I don't think I've seen any regular reddit users actually being a fan of the new look.

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2 points · 5 months ago

Lots. r/redesign is hot right now with the sports stuff, but we've received lots of positive sentiment over the months as we've progressed. Still a long way to go, but I think we're on the right track.

Speaking as one of the oldest Redditors and the creator of a lot of the current Reddit, I love the redesign. I have my gripes, of course (performance, mostly), but I know we'll get there.

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I had a disturbing thought a while ago and was hoping you could answer a question. Chris Wylie told investigators that CA shared its FB data with Palantir (Peter Thiel's company). He also said that there was no official contract.

I can't help but wonder if there was no official contract because it was part of a trade. Thiel is a major investor in Reddit. Perhaps he traded Facebook data in exchange for Reddit data? I bet CA or companies like it are dying to get their hands on what makes the base excited and the opposition depressed.

Has Reddit given its data to Thiel or to any other known political actor?

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33 points · 5 months ago

No. That's nonsense.

Do you have a bot or something that replies with this to everything I write? If so, turn it off.

Reddit admin, speaking officially12 points · 5 months ago

Should be fixed now. Will dig in and see what happened. I think there was a miscommunication of what the problem actually was.

30 points · 5 months ago

The funny thing is I'm not actually a prepper. It's true, I do own a couple guns, have had eye surgery, and am into motorcycles, and it's true those things would come in handy if society collapsed, but really what happened with that article is I thought I was talking on background about people I know who are actually preppers and gave a bunch of colorful (and cringey) quotes, which is an unfortunate habit I have.

In reality, the only thing I'm qualified to shoot are empty Bud Light cans; I wanted to be able to see the toilet at night when I pee; and, motorcycles are cool.

Reddit admin, speaking officially32 points · 5 months ago

Yes. Since we banned CT in 2015, we’ve updated our policies against harassment, bullying, and violence, all of which would be grounds for dismissal for that community.

Furthermore, the teams who make and enforce these decisions are much more robust.

CT was frustrating as the time because we didn’t have the policies and processes in place, but they wouldn’t last long today.


Hi all,

Each year around this time, we share Reddit’s latest transparency report and a few highlights from our Legal team’s efforts to protect user privacy. This year, our annual post happens to coincide with one of the biggest national discussions of privacy online and the integrity of the platforms we use, so I wanted to share a more in-depth update in an effort to be as transparent with you all as possible.

First, here is our 2017 Transparency Report. This details government and law-enforcement requests for private information about our users. The types of requests we receive most often are subpoenas, court orders, search warrants, and emergency requests. We require all of these requests to be legally valid, and we push back against those we don’t consider legally justified. In 2017, we received significantly more requests to produce or preserve user account information. The percentage of requests we deemed to be legally valid, however, decreased slightly for both types of requests. (You’ll find a full breakdown of these stats, as well as non-governmental requests and DMCA takedown notices, in the report. You can find our transparency reports from previous years here.)

We also participated in a number of amicus briefs, joining other tech companies in support of issues we care about. In Hassell v. Bird and Yelp v. Superior Court (Montagna), we argued for the right to defend a user's speech and anonymity if the user is sued. And this year, we've advocated for upholding the net neutrality rules (County of Santa Clara v. FCC) and defending user anonymity against unmasking prior to a lawsuit (Glassdoor v. Andra Group, LP).

I’d also like to give an update to my last post about the investigation into Russian attempts to exploit Reddit. I’ve mentioned before that we’re cooperating with Congressional inquiries. In the spirit of transparency, we’re going to share with you what we shared with them earlier today:

In my post last month, I described that we had found and removed a few hundred accounts that were of suspected Russian Internet Research Agency origin. I’d like to share with you more fully what that means. At this point in our investigation, we have found 944 suspicious accounts, few of which had a visible impact on the site:

  • 70% (662) had zero karma
  • 1% (8) had negative karma
  • 22% (203) had 1-999 karma
  • 6% (58) had 1,000-9,999 karma
  • 1% (13) had a karma score of 10,000+

Of the 282 accounts with non-zero karma, more than half (145) were banned prior to the start of this investigation through our routine Trust & Safety practices. All of these bans took place before the 2016 election and in fact, all but 8 of them took place back in 2015. This general pattern also held for the accounts with significant karma: of the 13 accounts with 10,000+ karma, 6 had already been banned prior to our investigation—all of them before the 2016 election. Ultimately, we have seven accounts with significant karma scores that made it past our defenses.

And as I mentioned last time, our investigation did not find any election-related advertisements of the nature found on other platforms, through either our self-serve or managed advertisements. I also want to be very clear that none of the 944 users placed any ads on Reddit. We also did not detect any effective use of these accounts to engage in vote manipulation.

To give you more insight into our findings, here is a link to all 944 accounts. We have decided to keep them visible for now, but after a period of time the accounts and their content will be removed from Reddit. We are doing this to allow moderators, investigators, and all of you to see their account histories for yourselves.

We still have a lot of room to improve, and we intend to remain vigilant. Over the past several months, our teams have evaluated our site-wide protections against fraud and abuse to see where we can make those improvements. But I am pleased to say that these investigations have shown that the efforts of our Trust & Safety and Anti-Evil teams are working. It’s also a tremendous testament to the work of our moderators and the healthy skepticism of our communities, which make Reddit a difficult platform to manipulate.

We know the success of Reddit is dependent on your trust. We hope continue to build on that by communicating openly with you about these subjects, now and in the future. Thanks for reading. I’ll stick around for a bit to answer questions.

—Steve (spez)

update: I'm off for now. Thanks for the questions!

6.5k points · 5 months agox2 · edited 5 months ago

Speaking as a moderator of both /r/Funny and /r/GIFs, I'd like to offer a bit of clarification here.

When illicit accounts are created, they usually go through a period of posting low-effort content that's intended to quickly garner a lot of karma. These accounts generally aren't registered by the people who wind up using them for propaganda purposes, though. In fact, they're often "farmed" by call-center-like environments overseas – popular locations are India, Pakistan, China, Indonesia, and Russia – then sold to firms that specialize in spinning information (whether for advertising, pushing political agendas, or anything else).

If you're interested, this brief guide can give you a primer on how to spot spammers.

Now, the reason I bring this up is because for every shill account that actually takes off, there are quite literally a hundred more that get stopped in their tracks. A banned account is of very little use to the people who would employ it for nefarious purposes... but the simple truth of the matter is that moderators still need to rely on their subscribers for help. If you see a repost, a low-effort (or poorly written) comment, or something else that just doesn't sit right with you, it's often a good idea to look at the user who submitted it. A surprising amount of the time, you'll discover that the submitter is a karma-farmer; a spammer or a propagandist in the making.

When you spot one, please report it to the moderators of that subReddit.

Reddit has gotten a lot better at cracking down on these accounts behind the scenes, but there's still a long way to go... and as users, every one of us can make a difference, even if it sometimes doesn't seem like it.

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Reddit admin, speaking officiallyOriginal Poster3.1k points · 5 months ago

It's not clear from the banned users pages, but mods banned more than half of the users and a majority of the posts before they got any traction at all. That was heartening to see. Thank you for all that you and your mod cabal do for Reddit.

Comment deleted5 months ago
Reddit admin, speaking officiallyOriginal Poster396 points · 5 months ago

Thank you for restoring balance.

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