The Best Way to Use Reddit

The other day I was going through my RSS feeds and I encountered this article

Reddit Is Killing The Best Way To Read The Site.

The thought that instantly entered my head was “the best way to use reddit is to not use it at all”. I have mentioned before how I think reddit, inspite of my fond memories of it during the 2010’s, is a case study of everything wrong with the modern day internet. When i mentioned this before I said one day I would explain why I feel this, and lo-and-behold here we are.

What was Reddit

Most people who have been involved with nerd culture for even a small amount of time know what Reddit is. In short, it is a site that is made up of several forums called subreddits. These subreddits cover various topics ranging from cute kittens to borderline illegal content (see the saga of /r/jailbait for that one). People follow and unfollow, post and comment, and upvote and downvote on these subreddits. This culminates in a nice little newsfeed covering all of the cool stuff on the internet curated for you by an algorithm. Sounds cool right?

The fact is way back in the ancient times of 2010, Reddit was a cool place to hang out. The fact is I was somewhat of a lonely teenager, and my peers at school just were not interested in the same things I was. For me to have the ability to just find communities hyper-focused on niche topics was amazing for me. Reddit back in the day is the way Hacker News is today - wholesome. Not only wholesome it also upheld one of the major fundamental principles I believe in, freedom-of-speech. You could say whatever you wanted on Reddit back then, for better or worse. I do not discuss my politics in open air, and for good reason, but from a strictly educational perspective freedom of speech allowed me to form my own opinions. Reddit was a major player in how I matured and developed my thoughts during my teenage years.

Reddit filled a void in those days and has since grown into fleshy cancer that exists only to mock its legacy.

What is Reddit

Reddit in the modern day is a hamstrung version of its former self. It still upholds freedom-of-speech, as long as it is the right kind of freedom of speech. The actual breadth of suitable topics you can discuss shrinks further and further by the day, not dissimilar to the purchasing power of the German mark during 1923. To make things clear I am not a free speech absolutist, degeneracy such as the things that were being shown on /r/jailbait do not belong in any medium of communication. I understand and appreciate that some communities are naturally going to have to be wack-a-molded, my issue lies with the Hypocrisy and double-speak that has been rampant on this site since the late 2010s.

To truly understand Reddit you need to understand how the site is run. There are three key groups and a well-established food-chain

  1. Inner party - Admins
  2. Outer party - Moderators
  3. Proles - Regular users

The moderators are the main people you will encounter, and they are not too dissimilar to a Discord mod. They exist in a voluntary position to moderate subreddits, most of which are essentially the “hall monitors”. I compare them to discord moderators because they are typically unhealthy nerds which poor social skills and low self-esteem who think that having elevated permissions on a subsection of a website somehow makes up for the utter failure that is their life. I was a Discord moderator, the person who I just described encompassed most of the people who I had to work with when moderating Discord servers, including myself. These elevated permissions granted to the moderators give them free will to ban and abuse anyone they like for any reason (including no reason). Their powers are often abused, which is borderline encouraged by the Admins. The admins of Reddit are the actual staff. They allow for this moderator behavior because the moderators will enforce the platform’s policy for free. This ends up being a toxic hierarchy where the moderators are free to unload defecation on those below them, just as long as they continue to kiss just left of the cleftal horizon of those up above. In the modern day the official moderator guidelines are neither followed by the volunteers, nor are they even policed by the admins. They exist as a relic of the old Reddit just like the content policy, and are a standing insult to everyone who used to love this site.

As mentioned moderators only make up the outer party, the inner party is the admins themselves. They can ban users from the site, and shut down entire communities. Both of the previously mentioned actions have recently been chain loaded into an MG42 and fred off with zero resources or oversight. Entire communities have been removed with no reason at best, and false accusations and justifications at worse. This of course was not always the case, back in its heyday the admins were very unwilling to remove subreddits unless they poses a legal risk to the site. However, as time has gone on the liberalization of the subreddit-wide ban hammer has become commonplace, with the first echo that sticks with people being the ban of /r/thefappening. For those that do not know, “The Fappening” was the case of the 2014 celebrity nude leak. As with all communities, a subreddit popped up around this, where people could share the associated content. Reddit released a blog post titled Every man is responsible for his own soul (which has since been removed) stating they would not remove the subreddit on the grounds of free speech. A few days later it disappeared. The blog post in question to this day sounds out at parts of who I am, specifically the phrase

“Virtuous behaviour is only virtuous if it is not arrivated at by compulsion”

This is simmilar to the sentiment of the idea that a man who is not able to fight is not a pacifist, he is just harmless. It is when a man can hurt and chooses not to that he becomes a pacifist. Years later this sentiment of allowing people to choose to be good on their own accord is an advertisement of all that the site is not.

A use geohump phrased it best

“We believe in and support free speech, until such a point as we determine that said participation in certain kinds of socially-disaproved-speech will be harmful to reddit as a whole.”

Reddit isn’t dying - it is dead. What we are witnessing now is a skin suit that is being puppeted around by a different beast.

Where should I go

Outside? I have recently left Discord, and I didn’t quite explain to my friends why I did. Even now I am reluctant to do so, but I owe them an explanation even if it is one they will dislike.

Discord is a lot like Reddit in many ways. It is a place where nerds culminate, and some would argue it is currently in its heyday. Discord communities do get banned, but the fact of the matter is it is a somewhat rare occurrence. Possibly Discord doesn’t care, but I refuse to accept they do not know these communities exist. I told people I left because I had been on there for close to five years, and as time has gone on I had dealt with a toxic community that I felt did not deserve my time. This reason is not false, and I do in no way intend to give the impression I’m walking it back. The community I was part of is cancerous, and I refuse to enable it further. The reason I left however is because Discord has this funny knack of exposing you to extremist ideology, and if you spend enough time around these extremist servers you slowly find yourself being groomed into sharing the same opinion. Towards the end of my stint on Discord, I decided I no longer wanted to follow politics, and this was not respected by my friends at all. They in no way ridiculed me for this, but it was apparent they did not understand, and one of them tried multiple times to get me to weigh in on topics after I asked them not to.

What does this have to do with Reddit’s rotting corpse? Well in two words, I would say “touch grass”. The internet is amazing, but it is not meant to be our be-all-end-all. The people that care about Discord and Reddit to such a degree that it makes them miserable (myself included) need to appreciate that if staying on these platforms is bad for them, then it is okay to just leave. The real world holds wonders that many will never experience, and that is the true tragedy. Not discord extremist server problem or Reddit’s hypocritical stance on free speech. If the people you call friends on the platforms are true friends they will make themselves available to keep in touch, and if they don’t then the friendship was weak to begin with.


A general purpose blog for me to braindump anything I might be thinking about. Please dont hesistate to reach out if you have any questions