By Daniel Robb ’10
If you’re ever sitting at home with nothing to do, I have a suggestion: Get your Internet browsin’ boots on and put Reddit.com in your address bar.
Reddit is a social media site that will entertain, edify and enthrall you.
The purpose of Reddit is for users to submit links to content they find on the Internet. Other users judge whether the links are useful, interesting or just plain fun.
If you go to Reddit.com, you will see a long list of links, with numbers next to them. Click on one of the arrows next to the link to either “up-vote” or “down-vote” a link.
The links are then ranked based on certain criteria, which you can organize by clicking the tabs at the top of the list. These are: “hot,” or what is most popular at the moment (this is the default view); “new,” which simply displays the newest links submitted; “controversial;” and “top,” which displays the posts which have accumulated the greatest number of up-votes for all time.
These categories are simply for the front page. The real bulk of Reddit is the different “sub-Reddits,” or communities of “Redditors” (Reddit users) that focus on a specific topic. Some of the different sub-Reddits are listed at the very top of the page, while the rest can be accessed by clicking “more.”
Some of the more popular sub-Reddits include “Technology,” “Politics,” “World News” and “Entertainment,” and span to other topics, such as “Music,” “Gaming,” “Sports” and “Economics.” These sections are really where you get the most amount of content. You can choose which are relevant to your interests and subscribe to them, which allows links from the section to appear on your front page.
Probably the most important part of Reddit is the community. The users that make up the Reddit community are diverse and the success of Reddit relies on them.
The comment system allows for the community to discuss each link. Each of the comments you submit are judged with the same voting system as the links themselves. Helpful posters and people who contribute constructively are up-voted by fellow users and gain “karma,” which helps to measure your contribution to the Reddit community.
All content is user-submitted, and user-judged, and when you go on Reddit there is a certain code of conduct which you are expected, though not required, to follow. Reddit also values original sources of content and judgment based on quality and not opinion. The Reddit community itself wrote a “reddiquette” section of the Web site that is linked at the bottom of the front page.
So if you choose to become a Redditor you can find some sub-Reddits tailored to your interest and become a part of the growing Reddit community.