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racism reddit yeah that's the ticket

Reddit to White Supremacists and other bigots: We’ll host your forums — at our expense!

DailyMotion has helpfully labeled some of Snake Island's most notable features
Much better policy; Send Reddit’s bigots to Snake Island

So the new Reddit CEO — returning co-founder Steve “Spez” Huffman — announced the site’s much-anticipated new content guidelines today, and to say that they are disappointing is a bit of an understatement.

Essentially, he told the site’s many varieties of bigots that they could continue to spout their various bigotries on Reddit without repercussions, so long as they didn’t actually threaten to, you know, go out and murder or otherwise physically harm people whose sexual preferences or skin color or religion (or whatever) didn’t meet their approval.

Only now the bigots will be posting on Reddit s dime.

No, really.

Reddit’s new policy on hate speech is to make hateful content “opt-in,” like the site’s NSFW subreddits are now. Oh, and to not embarrass the site’s advertisers by running ads next to blatantly hateful garbage.

As Huffman explained in a posting on Reddit, under the new policy

it’s ok to say “I don’t like this group of people.” It’s not ok to say, “I’m going to kill this group of people.”

Hateful content — or, as Reddit euphemistically puts it, “content that violates a common sense of decency” — will be “reclassified” but not banned. The “indecent” stuff

will require a login, must be opted into, will not appear in search results or public listings, and will generate no revenue for Reddit.

What this means in practical terms, Huffman explained in a followup comment, is that

r/rapingwomen will be banned. They are encouraging people to rape.

r/coontown will be reclassified. The content there is offensive to many, but does not violate our current rules for banning.

So, yeah, Reddit’s grand plan to deal with its bigots is to … subsidize them.

I can’t even.

Adding to the repugnance of this “hide the hate, but keep hosting it” policy is the fact that, in the wake of the #RedditRevolt against now ex-CEO Ellen Pao, and Dylan Roof’s racist murders in Charlestown, South Carolina, /coontown and other blatantly racist subreddits have seen a giant boost in traffic, with more than 18,000 subscribers and roughly 200,000 page views a day.

As MrTomFTW noted in a posting on r/GamerGhazi, r/coontown is

closing in to matching Stormfront’s traffic. This means that Reddit could soon be host to the largest active white supremacist forum on the Internet.

Actually, that’s understating things a little. If you add Reddit’s other racist subreddits into the mix, Reddit is already the number one destination for white supremacists looking for a place to talk online.

And Reddit will keep footing the bill.

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Alice Sanguinaria
6 years ago

Also, of note: people who go on these racist subreddits can still fund Reddit’s servers. All you need to do is gild a racist copypasta in one of the defaults.

Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
6 years ago
Subspace Radio Signals

Reblogged this on Subspace Radio Signals and commented:
So that’s why the rape philosophy forums are still up.

Reddit needs to die.

Philip Rose
6 years ago

If reddit is the toilet seat of the internet then i strongly advise you use one of these when visiting.

http://www.mikethebagman.com/toilet_seat_cover_1.jpg

John Pavlich (@johnpavlich)

“Don’t worry, it’s just a name….Snake Island is actually a peninsula!” 🙂

tooimpurenangel
6 years ago

This is totally about ethics in frozen peaches.

Auntie Alias
Auntie Alias
6 years ago

I don’t suppose r/TheRedPill and r/MensRights/ will be consigned to their very own “safe space”.

morrizaurus
6 years ago

quoting /u/CanVox from /r/GamerGhazi
“The correct protest is for the defaults to all consign themselves to the pit, depriving reddit of cash…”
Can we have this happen? Pretty, please?

contrapangloss
6 years ago

…Reddit, why? Why spend your company’s funds to keep hatred around? Why use ad revenue generated from user’s posting kittens to subsidize users calling treating other humans as less worthy of respect than dirt?

PEOPLE’S KITTEN PICS ARE LITERALLY SUBSIDIZING HATE ON YOUR SITE!

Reddit? What is wrong with you!?

Johanna Roberts
6 years ago

…You know a company isn’t long for the world when the CEO lacks a basic understanding of business and their own client base.

Snuffy
Snuffy
6 years ago

Dear Reddit,

Free speech does not entitle someone to a platform. You aren’t obligated to give bigots a platform for their hatred. You can’t say you don’t support bigotry when you are making the deliberate choice to host them and their hatred.

Sincerely,
Anyone with any common decency.

Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
6 years ago

Can’t say I’m surprised. His “Teaser” announcement…

Neither Alexis nor I created reddit to be a bastion of free speech, but rather as a place where open and honest discussion can happen: These are very complicated issues, and we are putting a lot of thought into it. It’s something we’ve been thinking about for quite some time. We haven’t had the tools to enforce policy, but now we’re building those tools and reevaluating our policy.

… And Yishan’s comment on it…

I’ve always remembered that email when I read the occasional posting here where people say “the founders of reddit intended this to be a place for free speech.” Human minds love originalism, e.g. “we’re in trouble, so surely if we go back to the original intentions, we can make things good again.” Sorry to tell you guys but NO, that wasn’t their intention at all ever. Sucks to be you, /r/coontown – I hope you enjoy voat!

… Were an obvious pack of lies visible from the moon, designed to keep the heat off for a day or two while the Pao fiasco settled before forging on full steam ahead. I’m just wondering how you and other watchdogs are supposed to keep tabs on them now (if I was a cynical person, I’d say that this “Opt-in” stuff was really designed not to keep hate subs “Hidden,” but to make it harder on watchdogs and pad their user numbers – and I am, so I will).

Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
6 years ago

And yes, I’m sure the Reddit Defense Force will be here shortly to call me a conspiracy theorist. But so far, they’ve either scammed Conde Nast or lied about scamming Conde Nast, set Pao up to fail, thrown her to the mercy of the bigots as a pre-planned scapegoat, lied about setting her up and scapegoating her, lied about cracking down on hate subs, lied about who’s even in charge…

Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
6 years ago

Oh, and tried taking full credit for Pao shutting down /r/FatPeopleHate. Despite this new announcement making that blatantly bullshit.

Lea
Lea
6 years ago

People with fully functioning consciences need to stop using Reddit. Boycott it and let it rot.

Mewens
Mewens
6 years ago

Vagaries of fate to be thankful for, part 813:

Reddit, thank you for being impossible to navigate in any kind of sane way and thank you for being ugly as sin. Made it far, far easier to disengage from you when the entirety of my use was finding Pokemon friend codes.

Paradoxical Intention
6 years ago

Dear Reddit,

Frank Sinatra said it best:

http://media.giphy.com/media/8fW8hBH6ncjle/giphy.gif

I hope your website sinks back into the cesspool of the Internet, and good people see you and yours are full of shit, and stop using your site because they’re decent human beings.

Good day.

kazei5
6 years ago

Yeah, I think it’s about time that Reddit just needs to be cleansed away in the Internet version of fire and the ashes doused in salt and bleach.

berdache from a previous life

You know, I’m willing to bet the subreddits they didn’t take down have just as many people advocating violence as the ones they banned.

Here’s what I’m hoping for. Their plan is to take all the odious subredits private as the first step in actually eliminating them. Later they’ll claim that the lack of revenue from those reddits means they have to be shut down, because they can’t afford to subsidize them any longer.

They may think that doing the elimination in two stages will produce less backlash than just cutting them off at once. Or that cutting them off for financial reason will be easier for the redditers to take and produce less backlash than claiming they’re being cut off because they’re hateful.

Alternatively, once they go private, they’ll start taking them down 1 or 2 at a time because the pushback won’t be nearly as organized if they’re all private.

kirbywarp
kirbywarp
6 years ago

Reddit: “We’re gonna hide your content, prevent it from being searchable, take out our ads so we don’t profit off of you, and generally isolate you from the rest of our site, making you essentially equivalent to an external site.

But we still are going to host your content. For very, very important reasons. We need you to be associated with our site, despite taking every other possible avenue to avoid associating you with our site.”

What’s the fucking point, exactly? A fetish for Free Speech doesn’t explain their willingness to basically hide away all the offensive content from the majority of the public. What’s the point except to send a clear public message that you really, REALLY want racists to use your website?

katz
6 years ago

Is it bad that my reaction was “This is better than I expected. At least they banned r/rapingwomen.”?

Besu
Besu
6 years ago

I wouldn’t worry too much about the huge spike in Coontown traffic. While I think it will attract a larger audience, I’m sure many are just curious onlookers checking out what everyone is talking about.

Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
6 years ago

Psst, Paradoxical, I sent you a link on Steam. (◡‿◡✿)

Tessa
6 years ago

Yeah, I wasn’t a fan of reddit before, but now I won’t ever go there, I don’t want my page views funding the hate speech.

NickNameNick
NickNameNick
6 years ago

See, this is what happens when we tell people they’re entitled to their opinions – rather than just allowed.

Except shit like this isn’t “just an opinion” and an indicator of the person’s ethical character. They’re holding and promoting sentiments that, directly or indirectly, effect whole groups of people in a detrimental fashion. There’s absolutely no value to it that makes deserving of being defended under the idea of free speech.

yutolia
yutolia
6 years ago

Maybe I’m weird (actually, that’s definitely), but I like snakes. Reddit bigots, YOU LEAVE THOSE POOR SNAKES ALONE!!!

I’m still onboard with Clipperton Island. Maybe we can even get Christo to build a gigantic pink fence.

sylviaplant
6 years ago

@Kirbywarp: It’s a cowardly, lazy, and selfish decision.

It’s cowardly because they are trying to avoid a hissy fit from the racists.

It’s lazy because they don’t want to set a precedent for actual active moderation and upkeep of their website.

It’s selfish because they still hope to gain traffic from the scum of the internet.

raysa
raysa
6 years ago

Just a note to say that Dylan roof committed his heinous crime in Charleston, SC.

Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
6 years ago

@yutolia

I’m sure there’s room at the bottom of the Mariana Trench for everyone on reddit.

deniseeliza
deniseeliza
6 years ago

So does this mean that the hate boards are also going to be ad-free? You know, the perk that people usually pay Reddit for?

Miss Andry
6 years ago

Well I guess that spells the end for the Philosophy of Rape subreddit. I’ll take the small victories where I can find them at this point.

Auntie Alias
Auntie Alias
6 years ago

@deniseeliza

Yes. Mind-blowing, isn’t it?

greydawnbreaking
greydawnbreaking
6 years ago

I wonder how long, from a purely financial perspective, this “compromise” will remain workable in the eyes of the Reddit powers that be.

If people start leaving the safe-for-work parts of Reddit due to the unchecked expansion of hate sites and an increasingly toxic reputation, ad revenue is going to go down but the subsidized areas will continue to grow.

It’s unlikely that these guys will end up banning hate groups simply because they can’t gain revenue from them. More likely, they’ll just start trying to place ads next to them, if they can find companies who won’t object to it–or just not tell the companies at all and try to brazen it out in the media and the courts if they get caught.

leftwingfox
6 years ago

So, not being on reddit, What does this mean for monitoring such sites? Will watchdogs like you and /bluepill be able to see inside the sewers without subscribing, or will subreddit mods be able to ban viewers for exposing their shit?

Because this strikes me as a “worst of both worlds” ass-covering maneuver with the potential to make monitoring these pits for extremists even harder.

Alice Sanguinaria
6 years ago

leftwingfox, I’d imagine that it’d be near impossible to get archives of webpages that are “locked”, since you have to be logged in (and opt-in) to view those pages. Hence, sites like archive.is are out.

Khane's Mom
Khane's Mom
6 years ago

My theory on this, for what’s it worth…the scum that are active in the gross “opt-in” subs also go to the ones with ads. If they get rid of the disgusting subs, they may lose those people completely. By tolerating the asshole sites, they hope the assholes go to other subs, driving up ad revenue.

Again, I don’t know, but I can see how the Reddit dudes may think this is viable.

Catalpa
Catalpa
6 years ago

@leftwingfox

If I’m grokking this right, this is starting to sound concerningly similar to the Deep Web to me, and if there is anything not reprehensible and horrible about the Deep Web, I’ve never heard of it. (For those unaware, they’re websites that are not indexed by search engines and often need passwords/special invitations to access, and are places where things like child porn flourishes.) If these fuckers are this toxic in the public eye, how much worse are they going to get when they have their own private little cauldron of bile and hatred to stew in?

raanab1
raanab1
6 years ago

If this is some sort of plan to avoid losing advertising revenue, I think maybe they didn’t think their clever plan through all the way.

“We’re not comfortable associating our brand with a site that has so much racist and sexist content.”
“Don’t worry, we’ve handled that.”
“Oh, you’ve removed that content from the site?”
“No! What we’ve done is kept that content on our site, put up a little bit of a block around it so it’s harder for people to keep track of, and removed the ads from it!”
“So, if we were to advertise with you we’d still be sponsoring the content we don’t want our brand connected to in any way at all.”

katz
katz
6 years ago

It’s unlikely that these guys will end up banning hate groups simply because they can’t gain revenue from them. More likely, they’ll just start trying to place ads next to them, if they can find companies who won’t object to it–or just not tell the companies at all and try to brazen it out in the media and the courts if they get caught.

But putting ads in locked parts of the site isn’t that good of an idea anyway, because the amount of traffic they get is limited. There’s practically no way this is a good plan.

sn0rkmaiden
6 years ago

Oh, how noble of reddit to allow those poor bigots, misogynists and other scumbags a safe haven to spew their bile in peace. And all for free? Well I’ll certainly be taking my business there now that I know how wonderfully inclusive they are. /s

Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
Pandapool -- The Species that Endangers YOU (aka Banana Jackie Cake, for those who still want to call me "Banana", "Jackie" or whatever)
6 years ago

@katz

Maybe their drilling holes in the ship, if you catch my drift.

A Wolverine
A Wolverine
6 years ago

Hiding the flaming diarrhea under the rug doesnt make it go away

really the best way to kill the shit at this point would be getting newsmedia to report that reddit is actively subsidizing hatred because the admins are spineless jellyfish

Jane
Jane
6 years ago

So, uh, Yishan was just blatantly trolling everyone yesterday when he was talking about how allowing hate speech was never part of Reddit’s vision and said it sucks to be Coontown? Because that was pretty obviously a not very subtle way of saying “Yeah, we’re going to ban this now”.

Between this, and the new CEO trolling with a “confession” about defrauding Conde Nast and setting up Pao to fail… I really don’t get the feeling that the admins are taking any of this seriously, and that’s kind of disappointing. It’d be one thing if they were just really, really dedicated to “free speech”, but to basically be mocking people who care that Reddit’s culture caters to the worst of society really strips away that vaguely-legitimate veneer and says that they just don’t care about who their policies hurt. I mean, I’d probably be inclined to think that anyway (since that’s usually what “free speech at all costs!” types really believe), but I’d at least pretend to give them the benefit of the doubt out of politeness if they weren’t doing stuff like this.

Oh, and the new CEO is still not demonstrating that he understands why many moderators need the “delete comment” feature to actually delete comments, not just super-hide them. Bleh.

All in all, this just makes me really glad that I don’t use Reddit. It’s like all the worst elements of tech culture concentrated into one place.

tinyorc
6 years ago

Huffman lacks basic understanding of why people object to his site acting as an incubator for racism and misogyny. His conception of the problem is typical of white male privilege: “Oh, people don’t like because they’re offended! If they can’t see it, they can’t be offended!” I think white men often have a hard time understanding the real and lasting damage caused by racism and misogyny because they’ve never experienced that damage themselves, so they assume that any strenuous objections must boil down to “offense” or “hurt feelings” or “political correctness” or whatever.

But the actual reason people want shit like /coontown scrubbed from the face of internet is not because it’s “offensive” and people don’t want to look at it (I’ve never visited it and I have no intention of ever doing so, but I still want it gone). It’s because these communities causes real quantifiable harm outside of Reddit. You could have nothing to do with Reddit, never visit it even in passing, and still become the target of a Reddit-based hate mob because you wrote an article or made a video or existed as a minority with an opinion on the internet.

And this “solution” is not a solution at all. If anything it’s going to make the problem worse. At least before, these people had to be what they are out in the open, with their appalling views on display for the whole world to see. But giving racists and misogynists a safe space means less accountability, less transparency, less visibility, with the same net result for the rest of the Internet. And Huffman understands that it’s not actually possible to “quarantine” these people in any real way. But he doesn’t care. All he cares about is maximizing page views and advertising revenue.

Jane
Jane
6 years ago

If I’m grokking this right, this is starting to sound concerningly similar to the Deep Web to me, and if there is anything not reprehensible and horrible about the Deep Web, I’ve never heard of it.

During the Arab Spring, various groups were able to use the deep web to organize without their governments cracking down on them. And the technology used to enable the deep web also allows human rights groups to operate more safely in certain repressive countries.

That said, for people living in North America or Europe, like, 99.9% of the time, using it means either you’re one of those “The government is tracking our every move!” types, or a criminal who really does fear the government finding out they’re buying drugs/stolen goods/hiring hitmen/even worse stuff.

Basically, the overwhelming majority of people on the internet have no good use for it, but it does have legitimate purposes, which is why the State department helped fund its creation.

Well I guess that spells the end for the Philosophy of Rape subreddit. I’ll take the small victories where I can find them at this point.

Sadly, no. They banned a different rape subreddit, presumably because Gizmodo wrote an article on it. I have little faith that they’ll catch any of the others.

Relatedly, I question how many subs will actually be walled off behind this content warning thing – historically, Reddit’s only ever bothered policing stuff when the media’s shined a spotlight on it. I wager they’ll send the so-called “chimpire” behind the labels, but will they bother with anything else? And will they actually maintain the list, or just make a half-hearted effort now and then never add anything new to it again?

EJ (The Other One)
EJ (The Other One)
6 years ago

Yesterday reddit said one thing, today they say another, tomorrow they’ll say still another. This is what corporations look like when they’re panicking. I’ll wager that behind the smug facade there’s real fear.

They sound like they’re desperately trying every combination of promises in order to find one that’ll magically take them back to a time when their dirty laundry wasn’t public, their shareholders ignored their red ink and the racist masses didn’t have them over a barrel. Maybe today’s combination will work. Maybe tomorrow’s.

RIP Reddit.

Maybe Pao, Taylor and Blount were the smart ones to leave now.

Aunt Edna
Aunt Edna
6 years ago

Disgusting bigot appeasers. Will not set my cyberfoot on Reddit.

Aunt Edna
Aunt Edna
6 years ago

Btw, while ‘rapingwomen’ will go, ‘philosophy of rape’ remains. Apparently it does not offend Huffman’s standards of decency.

Some standards.

alternatesteve90
6 years ago

Yeah…..I honestly don’t see this ending well.

Kakanian
Kakanian
6 years ago

I guess that they’ll eventually try to drive them off by charging them for the hosting service, because otherwise this move makes absolutely no sense.

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