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Reddit CEO Addresses Reddit Blackout

Reddit CEO Addresses Reddit Blackout

After a 48-hour Reddit blackout that saw over 8,000 subreddits turned private, Reddit CEO, Steve Huffman, is shedding some light on the company’s stance.

Reddit is where so many of us go for a community discussion on a large variety of subjects like finance, pop culture, memes, etc. These communities are known as subreddits. Even if you’re not one of the 57 million people using the platform every day there’s a good chance you’ve ended up on Reddit via a Google search.

The Reddit blackout was enacted by volunteer moderators who are protesting the company’s new API pricing, a change which is forcing numerous third-party apps to shutter. And while the majority of the blackout lasted only 2 days, many unpaid moderators are still keeping certain subreddits dark.

Apollo and rif is fun for Reddit, two of the biggest third-party apps that allow users to access the platform, have announced that due to the new pricing they have to shut down on June 30, one day before the price change rolls out.

“It’s a small group that’s very upset, and there’s no way around that,” Huffman said in an interview with NPR. “We made a business decision that upset them. But I think the greater Reddit community just wants to participate with their fellow community members.”

While it doesn’t look like Apollo and rif is fun for Reddit are going to make any sort of deal, Huffman says the company is still in negotiations with other third-party apps. He also makes it clear that this new pricing does not affect third-party accessibility apps.

Apparently only 3% of Reddit users access the platform through one of these apps. That’s less than 2 million which is a big number but small in comparison to how many people flock to the site. I didn’t even know there were third-party apps until this blackout.

Reddit has been free for a long time and “everything free all the time” just isn’t a sustainable business model. They’re going to have to make unpopular decisions like this or it’s going to be more than third-party apps that are going to shut down.

“We’ve been subsidizing other business for free for a long time,” Huffman explains. “We’re stopping that. That is not a negotiable point. We’re simply in an unsustainable position.”

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