Maggie Goldenberger and her fourth- and fifth-grade pals used to amuse themselves by dressing up in weird clothes, doing crazy stuff to their hair, and posing for polaroids holding funny objects and making weird faces. Years later, Goldenberger uploaded some of her favorites to her Myspace and Facebook accounts, which led to Jeff Davis, who she didn't know, posting it to Reddit, where a Redditor called Plantlife ganked it and captioned it with "GERSBERMS. MAH FRAVRIT BERKS" -- and a meme was born.
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This Czech nightclub has a special standing-height toilet for puking into -- but I bet they don't have urinals that sort piss by the booze you've consumed (meanwhile, check out that "puke here" ped-glyph!).
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Remember back in the day, when you could dial in to Reddit on your 2400 baud modem and read AMAs by President Reagan and Madonna?
Redditor Mystharia terminated a pregnancy for medical reasons last week; her doctor gave her this consent form, mandated by -- and scathingly attacking -- the Texas legislature, which requires the doctor to enumerate an eye-wateringly detailed account of the foetal development before termination. (Icon: Kevin Dooley/CC-BY)
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People who use those forums are predictably upset.
Jessica Moreno was the fourth senior female employee to exit in less than a month, reports Noah Kulwin for Recode.
From Jessica Moreno:
I have enjoyed my time at Reddit but after four years I feel that it’s time for me to move on. While I am working with Steve on a transition plan, I am looking forward to taking time off to spend with my family. It was a difficult decision to make right now as Reddit is taking difficult steps in a much needed positive direction. I’m excited to see the progress being made and glad I could be a part of it.
Reddit's new CEO has entertained the idea of imposing more rigorous policies aimed at preventing harassment, but it has the look of anxious PR activity squeezed out by public and investor pressure. Dorkno-libertarians committed to subsidizing white supremacist subreddits on principle: unhappy. Everyone else: unhappier.
Update: Moreno explained why she's leaving, and says it has nothing to do with gender issues: "I have always felt respected as a colleague here and managed to surround myself with good people in an industry not always known for that. The theory that I am leaving because of recent changes in policy is also false as I happily participated in creating those changes and stand by the decision to enforce them."
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This is a great Reddit thread.
The New York Times's
Adrian Chen reports on what happens when websites rely on unpaid labor to police their communities
: trouble, such as Reddit becoming useless for days as the landscape of control shifts and cracks.
The moderator class has become so detached from its mediating role at Reddit that it no longer functions as a means of creating a harmonious community, let alone a profitable business. It has become an end in itself — a sort of moderatocracy in which the underlying logic of moderation has been turned on its head. Under the watch of its moderators, Reddit has become a haven for extremists: The Southern Poverty Law Center recently called it the new ‘‘home on the Internet’’ for white supremacists, and it also functions as the central organizing point for the dubious ‘‘men’s rights’’ movement. For years, a moderator with the handle Violentacrez presided over an empire of execrable content on the site, including a hugely popular subreddit that shared sexualized photos of under-age girls, and another that glorified violence against women.
Boing Boing is moderated by supernatural creatures, which complicates matters. Read the rest
Some 1.6 billion of them are yours, courtesy of Archive.org.
This is an archive of Reddit comments from October of 2007 until May of 2015 (complete month). This reflects 14 months of work and a lot of API calls. This dataset includes nearly every publicly available Reddit comment. Approximately 350,000 comments out of ~1.65 billion were unavailable due to Reddit API issues.
You'll be needing about 5Gb, just for the compressed dataset. Read the rest
A quick but clever archive.org hack. Above, Reddit in 2007. Read the rest
Reddit's proposed new policies continue its principled ideological commitment to ignoring problems. But it also wants to do something about copyright infringement. Perhaps Reddit can brush its white supremacy and rape advice subreddits under the rug! But can it live without copyrighted material? Get real, Reddit! Read the rest
“I have just endured one of the largest trolling attacks in history,” writes Reddit's recently-departed interim CEO Ellen Pao in a Washington Post op-ed today. “And I have just been blessed with the most astonishing human responses to that attack.” Read the rest
Sarah Jeong reports on the bizarre and public wrangling over Reddit, whose free-for-all atmosphere blew up just in time to singe new investors expecting rapid growth. A labor problem, hidden in free speech posturing…
To outsiders, it looks like a form of collective insanity, a sign that Reddit itself is overrun with the denizens of r/CoonTown, utterly broken beyond repair. Yet Reddit still drives much of the Internet’s traffic. How can such a mainstream site appear to be so fringe? … Reddit appears to be overrun by a racist, sexist fringe. It’s not. … Reddit has driven itself into the ground by the same cost-efficient model that made it rise to the top. The site has a content problem because it has a moderation problem, a terrible labor problem that it has long hidden behind proclamations of “free speech.”
The hostiles there are expected to get a haircut today, following the installation of co-founder Steve Huffman as CEO and hints at more moderation. But who gets paid? Read the rest
Reddit's army of seething adolescents found a target for their anger in the form of Ellen Pao, the site's caretaker CEO and the presumed feminist fascist monster who presided over the censorship of r/fatpeoplehate and other bastions of free speech.
According to her predecessor Yishan Wong, however, the Reddit board has long wanted to rid the site of its nastiest subreddits. Ellen Pao, he claims, was in fact the last person around "upholding my free-speech policies" and telling them no.
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How’s everyone doing? This is AWESOME!
There’s something I neglected to tell you all this time (“executive privilege”), but I’m declassifying a lot of things these days. Back around the time of the /r/creepshotsdebacle, I wrote to /u/spez for advice. I had met him shortly after I had taken the job, and found him to be a great guy. Back in the day when reddit was small, the areas he oversaw were engineering, product, and the business aspects - those are the same things I tend to focus on in a company (each CEO has certain areas of natural focus, and hires others to oversee the rest). As a result, we were able to connect really well and have a lot of great conversations - talking to him was really valuable.
Well, when things were heating around the /r/creepshotsthing and people were calling for its banning, I wrote to him to ask for advice. The very interesting thing he wrote back was “back when I was running things, if there was anything racist, sexist, or homophobic I’d ban it right away.
The embattled interim CEO of Reddit, who became all the more embattled after the sacking of a popular admin left unpaid mods outraged, is leaving the company. Read the rest
The bitcoin blockchain could be used to decentralize media, putting it beyond the control of individual hosts. Read the rest