Reddit Revolt: ‘AMA’ Moderator Sacked the Day After a Disastrous Jesse Jackson Q&APosted: July 3, 2015
Reddit is in Meltdown
Allum Bokhara writes: The hugely popular link-sharing site is in a state of virtual lockdown after the volunteers who run some of the site’s biggest communities (known as “subreddits”) went on the digital equivalent of a general strike. This followed the sacking of Victoria Taylor, a popular site admin, after a Reddit Q&A with the Rev. Jesse Jackson went badly for the activist preacher.
“The collective shutdown has rendered Reddit virtually unusable. In the space of a single evening, over 100 subreddits with tens of millions of subscribers have gone dark.”
High-traffic subreddits dedicated to movies, gaming, videos, history, science and art have been voluntarily locked by their moderators as an act of protest against the decision, which they saw as a symptom of an increasingly overbearing management that takes its users and volunteer moderators for granted.
“It’s another blow for interim Reddit CEO Ellen Pao, with users dubbing her ‘Chairman Pao’ ever since the June crackdown.”
The collective shutdown has rendered Reddit virtually unusable. In the space of a single evening, over 100 subreddits with tens of millions of subscribers have gone dark. Users are now flocking to Reddit’s competitors, such as Frizbee and Voat, the latter of which is struggling to accommodate its latest spike in traffic.
This is not the first time Reddit has seen a revolt against its management. Around mid-June, users waged a week-long rebellion against the site management after Reddit shut down a number of “politically incorrect” subreddits. But this is the first time that so many big moderators have simultaneously shut down their subreddits.
It’s another blow for interim Reddit CEO Ellen Pao, with users dubbing her “Chairman Pao” ever since the June crackdown.
The current revolt was triggered by the sacking of Victoria Taylor, a veteran administrator on the site who specialized in arranging high-profile Reddit Q&As, known as “Ask Me Anything” or “AMA” sessions. Ask Me Anythings are probably Reddit’s best-known feature and are known for featuring world-famous guests including Barack Obama, Sir Tim Berners-Lee and Julian Assange.
Victoria Taylor was reportedly instrumental in securing guests and helping to organise AMA sessions across a variety of large subreddits. Her removal triggered outrage among moderators, who deemed her to be indispensable to the community. One key moderator said the site management had “pulled the rug out from under them.”
Moderators are particularly angry at the suddenness of Taylor’s sacking, which came without warning or communication with the community. So far, users are still in the dark as to why Taylor was removed….(read more)
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