From FYSE 1396: Digital Media Literacy
Revision as of 01:24, 6 December 2013 by Murphy Roberts (talk | contribs)
Jump to navigationJump to search


Reddit is a social media site that displays pages of links to articles, pictures, videos, and other forms of media. It revolves around a participatory culture when users are able to vote links "up" or "down" based off of their personal preferences. The most popular links will be ranked higher and be seen by a wider range of people. The name "reddit" derives from the phrase "read it" because reddit allows early exposure to the most significant information[2]. Therefore, a user has already "read it". Reddit is a customizable, participatory site that revolves around competition, community, and participation. One may customize their reddit experience by choosing to follow certain subreddits that interest them. Subreddits are organizational categories of reddits that are dedicated to providing information on that subject (for example r/politics features articles about the current domestic and international political scene).


Reddit was founded in June 2005 by Steve Huffman and Alexis Ohanian. The pair designed the site after graduating from the University of Virginia with the intention for the for the site to be a simple "bulletin style" link sharing site. The site now has would later become known as "the front page of the internet" garnering 400 million unique visitors and 37 billion page views in 2012.[3] The site was purchased by Condé Nast in October 2006 for an estimated $25 Million. In 2012, Reddit split from Condé Nast and is run independently from its San Francisco offices. It has remained a private company.

The Organization of Reddit/Subreddits

Links submitted to reddit have to submitted to a categorical "subreddit". (For example, you would submit a link of a cute puppy to the subreddit "r/aww" which is a subreddit committed to cute pictures of animals.) There are 22 default subreddits that all users are automatically subscribed to[4]. There is a wide variety of subreddits. Anyone user can create a subreddit about anything of their choice. This feature was developed in March 2008. This allowed people to establish communities within the larger community of reddit [5]. There is over 5,400 subreddits[6], so there is essentially a subreddit for most any topic in which you might be interested.


Many redditors often refer to the "reddit effect". Generally speaking, this term is a bit far fetched, but does merit some validation. By sheer numbers, Reddit has a massive amount of traffic with over 90 million unique visitors viewing over five billion pages per month[7]. That amount of traffic contributes to a massive influx in the amount of articles, pictures, videos, and other internet links that they would have otherwise not have seen before. The "reddit effect" is the side effect of this. Users of Reddit often see much more things than the average user. Because of this they feel like they know more about what is currently happening than their non-using peers[8][9].

Like many other social networks, Reddit is driven by user's abilities to share. Reddit allows for the sharing of several types of posts including links, reflections on life, questions, commentary on current issues, and connects redditors with one another. The diversity of ways in which redditors are able to connect with one another allows for a massive interactive community. Like Twitter, reddit allows people from all backgrounds the ability to communicate with one another about a subject. Whether they are commenting on something as trivial as the cuteness of a cat picture to the significance and logistics of changing voting laws in the United States, there is something for everyone who uses Reddit. Another similarity to Twitter that Reddit shares is the ability that it has to connect people to celebrities and other people of significance through the "IamA" subreddit or r/IAmA. These connections allow celebrities to tell redditors to "Ask Me Anything". This is a sort of connection that does not exist on other sites. For example, in spring 2012, President Barack Obama did an AMA and it became the most popular Reddit post of all time. People want to connect with others, especially celebrities. Reddit allows a great interface for this sort of interaction.


<references \>