June 10, 2013

Reddit Mondays: #1 – WTF is it?

Reddit is here to stay, so we’d better all get used to it. Alright?

For the next few Mondays we’ll be having a chat about all things Reddit, in an attempt to make the (often quite intimidating) site into something all together more user friendly and cuddly.

Below are the top 4 most frequently asked questions that I’m asked by non Reddit users.

1) So…What is Reddit anyway?

Remember Digg? It’s sort of a bit like that, but bigger and better and thriving as a community. Digg on the other hand?… Not so much. It’s a place to find relevant interests, no matter how niche, and chat to other likeminded weirdos from all over the Internet. Got an interest that’s a bit odd? Reddit probably has you covered, bro.

The site is made up of subreddits which act as small communities in themselves. When you first sign up to the site, Reddit will automatically subscribe you to a bunch of these popular subreddits. These are pretty broad categories like funny, pics, and WTF, but you can unsubscribe to them if you want and build a page that’s more tailored to your interests.

2) How do I find stuff I like?

To be fair, there are thousands of subreddits and it’s easy to become paralysed by choice, so the best thing to do is go here and search by interest. Also you’ll find links to certain subs in comment threads, so make sure you check them out and subscribe if you find something interesting.


It’s cool. Don’t worry. It’s a bit confusing at first.

Reddit is community curated. Which means that if you only lurk around the top half of the front page you’re only going to see what’s popular at that moment. This is because the community upvotes or downvotes the post based on interest/relevance. Upvotes are for when you like something and downvotes…? Yeah, you get the picture.

This also goes for comments. When you click ‘view comments’ under a link, the first post you see will be the most upvoted comment in that thread. Under that (usually slightly to the right) will be replies to that comment. These will have been curated too, according to upvotes, so you don’t have to read some wasteman’s opinion on a cat video. Instead you can just skip to the witty puns.

It is a little strange at first, but you’ll get used to it. Just make sure you practice by installing a Reddit app on your phone and then obsessively checking it every 12 minutes.

4) I submitted a link, it’s not immediately gone viral and someone called me a rude name 🙁

That usually happens with your first post. It’s not your fault. You just weren’t prepared. In 2012 30 million posts were submitted to the site, so if your hilarious piece of viral content didn’t make it to the front page, don’t be sad. It happens.

The best advice I can give you is to lurk more, develop a thick skin, and be prepared for even the most flawless posts to be flamed into oblivion.

Next week we’ll be chatting about the language of Reddit, and how to go native.