Reddit Will Hide Some Pro-Trump Posts, Punish 'Toxic Users'
It can often feel like social media exists in the ugliest corner of cyberspace.
But thankfully, some platforms have begun to take steps to filter out bullying and hate speech.
And it appears as though Reddit is the latest portal to make such a move.
We are taking a more aggressive stance against toxic users and poorly behaving communities.
In a new post, Reddit CEO Steve Huffman writes that the site will take steps to punish "toxic users," including some Trump supporters.
Many of you are aware of my attempt to troll the trolls last week. I honestly thought I might find some common ground with that community by meeting them on their level. It did not go as planned. I restored the original comments after less than an hour, and explained what I did.
I spent my formative years as a young troll on the Internet. I also led the team that built Reddit ten years ago, and spent years moderating the original Reddit communities, so I am as comfortable online as anyone. As CEO, I am often out in the world speaking about how Reddit is the home to conversation online, and a follow on question about harassment on our site is always asked. We have dedicated many of our resources to fighting harassment on Reddit, which is why letting one of our most engaged communities openly harass me felt hypocritical.
While many users across the site found what I did funny, or appreciated that I was standing up to the bullies (I received plenty of support from users of r/the_donald), many others did not. I understand what I did has greater implications than my relationship with one community, and it is fair to raise the question of whether this erodes trust in Reddit. I hope our transparency around this event is an indication that we take matters of trust seriously. Reddit is no longer the little website my college roommate, u/kn0thing, and I started more than eleven years ago. It is a massive collection of communities that provides news, entertainment, and fulfillment for millions of people around the world, and I am continually humbled by what Reddit has grown into. I will never risk your trust like this again, and we are updating our internal controls to prevent this sort of thing from happening in the future.
More than anything, I want Reddit to heal, and I want our country to heal, and although many of you have asked us to ban the r/the_donald outright, it is with this spirit of healing that I have resisted doing so. If there is anything about this election that we have learned, it is that there are communities that feel alienated and just want to be heard, and Reddit has always been a place where those voices can be heard.
Punishments will vary, "from warnings to timeouts to permanent bans."
What do you think of the move to clean up Reddit?
H/T: The Verge