Reddit used to be a really, really fun place. From r/aww and r/eyebleach, where people shared pictures and videos of puppies and kittens and all else adorable to just about every specific hobby, show or interest group there is. Need to identify a bug? r/whatsthisbug.
Want to improve your make up skills? r/makeupaddictions.
No matter how funny or macabre or obscure – if you can think of it, there is probably a subreddit for it. If you have a problem, there is probably a subreddit support group for it.
And, like most things that intersect technology with culture, it is predominantly populated with young-ish people. As in, people who instead of receiving a well-rounded education have instead been through 12+ years of Cultural Marxist indoctrination
. (For a full understanding of just how deep the rabbit hole goes, pleas listen to ‘Explaining Postmodernism’
. A few hours long, but well worth the listen.)
And then the 2016 election came…
Just as it had polarized the US (and world) opinion into Trump fans and ‘NeverTrumpers’, so reddit has become increasingly polarized.
(Full admission: as a libertarian, I was not a Trump fan because he is a mercantilist
. However, given the choice between a crook and a murderer, I’ll take the crook, thank you very much. Thus, I am a reluctant Trump supporter – with both eyes wide open as to who and what he is.)
Refocusing: just like the rest of society, reddit became deeply polarized when it came to the topic of Trump. On a site dominated by Cultural Marxists and SJWs (those not interested in politics may outnumber redditors (people contributing to reddit), but they are largely irrelevant in this debate) – especially among the people who run reddit who are wholly in-line with the oppressive political correctness and speech codes and safe spaces, were very few places where one could express an opinion favourable of Donald Tump…without getting outright banned.
The – by far the major – place to do this was a subreddit called r/The_Donald.
It was a place where meme were born and weaponized autism proved and disproved claims by digging up deeply buried evidence.
It was also one of the most positive places on reddit – where people were happy, supported each other and celebrated patriotism (no matter what country they were from) and battled against globalism and the destruction of individual cultures. That is all cultures – not just the ones popular with SJWs….
And yes, Donald Trump’s team regularly monitored this subreddit to take the pulse of what his support base was thinking, wanting, criticizing, etc. There are rumours that, at times, Donald Trump himself would scan the posts there to get a first-hand knowledge, to remain in touch with his supporters.
Reddit itself was not happy about that. Not at all.
If you are not familiar with how reddit works – the more votes a post gets, the more likely it is to get on the front page of r/all (where posts from ALL subreddits are shown. Except, that is, The_Donald. The admin people, least by Steve Huffman
) first altered the voting algorithms – making votes given to The_Donald worth 1/10th or 1/100th (sorry – the link is no longer accessible…which is the problem I am writing about) of a vote on any other subreddit.
Then they took to other, more technical measures.
Shadowbanning, randomly unsubscribing members, not showing new posts (with a message ‘there does not seem to be anything here’) [sorry if my phrasing is not 100% accurate – angry and cannot access the older files to verify/check], not showing up on r/all…they tried just about everything they could to make The_Donald invisible on reddit. Some other subreddits would even permanently ban you if you had ever posted or commented on anything on r/The_Donald – no matter what it was you said. Even just subscibing to it was a bannable offense on some subreddits – really.
Which did not discourage members of The_Donald. As the saying goes, if they are trying to censor you – you must be doing something right!!!
And indeed, the redditors at r/The_Donald took it all in stride and derived positive energy from the negativity and venom cast at us. It really was a very fun and positive place to go – one where people were not censored, but where any racism or misogyny or other prejudice was met with derision and ridicule, while humour and positive feedback were greatly appreciated.
Alerted by a friend, I tried to check r/The_Donald, only to receive this message:
You must be invited to visit this community
At 8:41pm ET on 5/19/2017, Reddit Admins removed three The_Donald mods without warning. This was punishment for our refusal to comply to a special set of rules that were imposed only on this subreddit and prevented our members from fully enjoying reddit or our mods from defending users against harassment.
We’ve temporarily gone dark in a show of strength against these unfair restrictions. Check back at 9 PM EST tomorrow for an announcement.
The moderators of this subreddit have set it to private. You must be a moderator or approved submitter to visit.
This means no people subscribed to r/The_Donald can see the subreddit or access it, unless they have been specifically invited by the moderators.
Several related subreddits have also gone dark:
This is a subreddit for every moderator of The_Donald to discuss and ask questions if they need anything. — We will use this to update you all on recent happenings, so please check here every so often.
24 hours is a huge deal on a fast paced place like r/The_Donald, which has helped analyze heaps of documents from WikiLeaks to the murder of Seth Conrad Rich for having leaked the DNC emails.
Something very huge – site-threatening – must have happened to precipitate a reaction as severe as this.
At this time, it is pointless to speculate as to who will win this battle for r/The_Donald: the Mods or the Admins. Unlike Steve Huffman, I know Aaron Swartz
would have been on the side of r/The_Donald – had he not been suicided…
Regardless of appearances, end well, this will not….
ANNOUNCEMENT: The Future of r/The_DonaldHIGH ENERGY (self.The_Donald)
submitted 58 minutes ago * by TretesteΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ[M] – announcement
We have been closed for just over 12 hours. Look at /all. It’s covered in posts obsessing about us. The anti-Trump circle-jerk is stronger than ever, in a real 1984 type of way. We are the only place on Reddit that offers an alternative viewpoint. Even if you are against our president, you must see how valuable that is. Discourse is what makes this country great. We cannot cede all of Reddit to the bots spamming on one side of the conversation.
If you’re like me, you’re having withdrawals from the dankest place on the internet. We were planning to stay dark in protest longer but we’re opening back up early because Seth Rich’s killers are still not found. We are opening back up for him. No one is willing to talk about this, besides us.
As you all know, our top mod, u/ohsnapyougotserved, was banned and demodded by Reddit. We also lost two other fantastic mods. This will not deter us from chasing after our goal of equal treatment. That being said, we are NOT losing this community. That’s what leftists want.
Where do we go from here? We continue to support President Trump, create and promote the spiciest memes known to man, and trigger the fuck out of liberals. We fight the deep state.
It’s what we do best.
May 23, 2017 at 23:12
I’m not a fan of any echo chamber full of blind supporters, and that includes the scores of nauseatingly leftist subreddits masquerading as balanced. The_Donald is seriously a place that could give all the Ayatollahs and cardinals a run for their money in dogma.
I do not disagree with the modifying the algorithms. The front page is reserved for the best and most important articles of all subreddits, and should be relative in a sense. A subreddit shouldn’t get front page attention just because it’s subscribers basically upvote anything that’s posted on there. I’d honestly be in favor of getting politics out of the frontpage entirely because reddit is not news. It’s an echo chamber of mostly the left, and somewhat the big-government right.