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Just curious about how these corners of the internet intersect
January 26, 2011 10:57 AM   Subscribe

Curious about cross-pollination from Reddit

I'm a registered user of both Metafilter and Reddit, and occasionally notice links travelling from one site to the other. Do you use both? Do you frame posts differently for each community? What's your take on the differences between them? The intersections?
posted by cubby to MetaFilter-Related at 10:57 AM (93 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

i post stuff from reddit here all the time. I tend to fill the posts out with more info and links when I do, though.

I don't post links or comment on reddit very much at all, though. It's too big and moves too fast.
posted by empath at 10:59 AM on January 26, 2011


No, NA, NA, NA.
posted by DU at 11:07 AM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


Curious about cross-pollination

Start here.
posted by backseatpilot at 11:08 AM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


Everything flows from Metafilter to Reddit. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise.
posted by crunchland at 11:10 AM on January 26, 2011


Reddit is the evil spawn of satan, and should be avoided at all costs.
posted by koeselitz at 11:11 AM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


I never read Reddit. It's too busy-looking for me. There's way more cross pollination from people directly reposting Kottke's links anyway.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 11:11 AM on January 26, 2011


This is too big for you, you know that? It's a mystery! It's a mystery wrapped in a riddle inside an enigma! The posters don't even know! Don't you get it?
posted by katillathehun at 11:16 AM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


i think this is just like minded users - you'll see the same overlap on boing-boing, the gawker sites, digg (back when people used it)...
posted by nadawi at 11:19 AM on January 26, 2011


I'm fairly active on Reddit (where single-link posts are the rule, rather than the exception!) and post at least one thing over there every day. A couple of times I've found something awesome that I tried out on Reddit first and then posted here; a few times I've seen something cool or fun here that I've taken over there. I still find Reddit to be a complete crapshoot as to what people are going to like or downvote into oblivion, but actually I've found that to be true here too (sans downvotes). I think to myself, "MeFi will love this" and get a ho-hum response, or I'll see something and think it's cool, "but weak sauce for MeFi" and then somebody else posts it here and you're all like YAYAWESOME, and the same for Reddit, so to answer your question I dunno.
posted by Gator at 11:20 AM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


Reddit's the new center of the internet universe, it won't last long. Reddit, like Digg, like Slashdot, and others all are outmodded soon enough.
posted by 2bucksplus at 11:23 AM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


I browse reddit but never post there. However, in recent days it has gone downhill in a major, major way. Macros, DAE posts, many many posts about high-school-age sex concerns, and OMGWTFBBQ political links. They are also obsessed with people who mention that they have girlfriends.
posted by proj at 11:31 AM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


I never read Reddit. So I'm glad somebody is to filter all the good stuff over our way!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 11:31 AM on January 26, 2011 [2 favorites]


I read Reddit (mostly just pics, rage comics, and Dogfort) when I run out of new MetaFilter, but I stopped participating as a commenter there because of the rampant misogyny. The MetaFilter community has spoiled me with its civility and respect for others that I've lost my patience for the crap that is so prevalent elsewhere on the internet.
posted by Jacqueline at 11:34 AM on January 26, 2011 [11 favorites]


Curious about cross-pollination from Reddit

I suppose it's time to get tested again.
posted by special-k at 11:35 AM on January 26, 2011 [4 favorites]


I get that Reddit is huge but I just can't get the hang of reading it. I figure, anything really good will show up here anyway, so why make the effort?
posted by CunningLinguist at 11:37 AM on January 26, 2011 [3 favorites]


Didn't we just have this thread? Oh yes we did.

I never read Reddit. I do read a lot of more traditional media and notice recurring topics from the NYT, NPR, The NYer, The Atlantic and so on. It's just that ideas arise, and then circulate more rapidly once they find an initial audience, and these are info-hound types of websites, so some crossover is to be expected. I tend to see topics pop up in the major media, on MeFi, and on Facebook among my circle all at about the same time.
posted by Miko at 11:38 AM on January 26, 2011


reddit's just a fad, like digg was.

MeFi is eternal.
posted by Eideteker at 11:40 AM on January 26, 2011 [3 favorites]


I've been on reddit since about 2007, so it's been interesting to see the rise of subreddits and the change of the site from a link-sharing site to a collection of sub communities. It's also been interesting to watch the site go to complete shite over the span of a few years due to popularity/etc.

It's a growth vs sustainability thing. As reddit becomes more and more popular it's negative tendencies will increase and posts will become more and more inane in order to get the most points (since that's what appeals to reddit's userbase). Because of this, things posted on MeFi won't go viral, but will almost always be good. By contrast, things on reddit have the chance to go viral, but most posts are always terrible.
posted by hellojed at 11:47 AM on January 26, 2011


I used to read proggit, and posted a couple of perennial links from there (stuff that comes back every so often, given that they don't have a policy against doubles), and also some "oh, cool" things.

I once considered making a Qwe1234 post, but I don't think it would be a good idea.
posted by Monday, stony Monday at 11:47 AM on January 26, 2011


I read IAMA, but on the whole I don't get reddit. Way way way too much material, and I have no idea how to pick through it. The structure of the site confounds me.

And it's even worse about mystery meat links than MeFi is. Hell, on Reddit, EVERYTHING is mystery meat.
posted by Afroblanco at 11:53 AM on January 26, 2011


What is the best time to post my MeFi/Reddit question?
posted by fixedgear at 11:56 AM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


DU: No, NA, NA, NA.

Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Hey Goodbye / Batman!

I cannot abide by a place that thrives on single links with scant information.

My posts come from various places, and I'll cite them if I haven't done much to expand from that original post, or if the other site has comments that expand in ways I cannot easily tie in (like anecdotal stories). But if I add enough info to a post, I claim it as my own.

Anyway, Reddit/ BoingBoing/ Slashdot/ etc get their info from other sources. So much is being shuffled around blogs and link aggregators, who can say where a link "first" came from? As some sites rely on moderators to filter material onto the site, even time-stamps of posting the material is meaningless for giving due credit to the "origin."
posted by filthy light thief at 11:56 AM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


If someone gets me that kid's address I'll write him a letter.
posted by cjorgensen at 12:00 PM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


I can't even look at Reddit without wanting to gouge out my eyes with a fork. Every time somebody asks for threaded discussions here I crap my pants a little.
posted by trunk muffins at 12:00 PM on January 26, 2011 [8 favorites]


I spend a lot of time on reddit. In terms of commentary, some subreddits are indeed festering cess pits of misogyny and lame jokes. But not all. It is crucial when using reddit to tailor your subscriptions. There are so many tiny little subreddits that are filled with great stuff; let sites like subredditfinder.com assist you. If you simply unsubscribe from /r/reddit.com, /r/pics, /r/politics, and possibly /r/WTF you remove a lot of the crap that everyone always complains about. Also, I set the number of entries per page to 100 and then read the site with RSS, so I never interact with the story listing pages. Instead it's just a feed in my reader that fills up with links. Even when the commentary is terrible a lot of the links are decent and diverse. And again, in some of the more topic-specific subreddits like /r/programming or /r/linux or /r/perl there are truly fantastic discussions amongst really smart people. For those of you that like AskMe, check out /r/askscience and /r/answers. Do not check out /r/AskReddit if you want something like AskMe. /r/AskReddit is the antithesis of AskMe as it's pure chatfilter. But /r/answers and /r/askscience and the like are more about answering actual questions and non-answers and jokes are downvoted.
posted by Rhomboid at 12:04 PM on January 26, 2011 [11 favorites]


It is crucial when using reddit to tailor your subscriptions.

It really, really is. I'm aware that there's misogyny over there, but I have seen almost none of it thanks to the selection of subreddits I choose to read. I almost never visit the front page where you're slammed with everything at once. I'm still subbed to /r/pics, so I do have to wade through some crap there (it was a nightmare during the whole Prop 19 kerfuffle -- literally EVERYBODY was posting the SAME Prop 19 image over and over and over) but there's some good stuff there too. And there are really great sections like /r/aww (cute pictures and videos, often people's own pets), /r/itookapicture (wonderful photography community), /r/startrek (you'd think it would be overrun with pedantic weirdos, but it's actually a relatively small, fun group of people), and of course /r/minecraft, where everybody posts screenshots and tips and "Hey I found my first slime!" There are plenty of subreddits that are oases in the desert of politics and religiongrar and racism and misogyny, and hey, you can always downvote and report the really nasty stuff. The moderation is hit or miss, sadly, but you can choose your own Reddit experience, almost completely.
posted by Gator at 12:16 PM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


Also, reddit has done a few good deeds too.
posted by Rhomboid at 12:22 PM on January 26, 2011


The only time I read reddit is when someone here links to an IAMA that sounds interesting. And then I'm reminded how profoundly irritating threading is.
posted by rtha at 12:29 PM on January 26, 2011 [2 favorites]


I look at reddit when I want to laugh at a funny image. They are great for that. If I could find a way to get around the site without only finding funny images, it'd be a more useful counterpart to Metafilter for me. Plus. there's too much navel-gazing going on.

But damn there are some funny images over there.
posted by yeti at 12:32 PM on January 26, 2011


I just tried to register for reddit because of this thread, and the captcha didn't show up. I take it as a sign.

Going back to my MefiHole now.
posted by SNWidget at 12:34 PM on January 26, 2011


Do you use both?

Yes, reddit to a much greater extent.

Do you frame posts differently for each community?

God, yes. I probably wouldn't get away with 80% of my reddit posts here. My wrists and glutes would be permanently rosy from slappings.

What's your take on the differences between them?

reddit is bigger, broader and gets new stuff first, almost always. It also takes far longer to get used to, to learn how to customise for effective use, and to understand. It has much more noise, but then it has more signal, too - once you get your filters organised. It's not so moderated, less troubled by protocols and community navel-gazing, and it's altogether more relaxed about shit. This is not to everyone's taste, of course.

The mood there is a little like the old free-and-easy, messy, loud-mouthed internet of yore, and yet it works surprisingly well, especially when you consider the massive number of contributors there. Plus, if you pick your subreddits carefully you can avoid the raucous aspect to a very large extent.

The intersections?

Not a hell of a lot, really.
posted by Decani at 12:38 PM on January 26, 2011 [2 favorites]


I read Reddit (mostly just pics, rage comics, and Dogfort)
posted by Jacqueline at 7:34 PM on January 2


Dogfort scum! My masters at Catfort have been notified! You will be neutralised!
posted by Decani at 12:44 PM on January 26, 2011 [3 favorites]


God, yes. I probably wouldn't get away with 80% of my reddit posts here. My wrists and glutes would be permanently rosy from slappings.

I realize this may blow the irony meters off the charts but is this really necessary?
posted by proj at 12:47 PM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


This is too big for you, you know that? It's a mystery! It's a mystery wrapped in a riddle inside an enigma! The posters don't even know! Don't you get it?

We are not put upon this earth to "get it".
posted by Joe Beese at 12:48 PM on January 26, 2011


And then I'm reminded how profoundly irritating threading is

Threading favors lurkers. If you're a lurker, you're not interested in peoples back-and-forth exchanges most of the time. However, if you're a contributor, threading is anathema because it means people are less likely to read your post.
posted by Afroblanco at 12:52 PM on January 26, 2011 [2 favorites]


I realize this may blow the irony meters off the charts but is this really necessary?
posted by proj at 8:47 PM on January 26


Just answering the question, dude. As I saw fit. You can always downvote it. Oh wait...
posted by Decani at 12:55 PM on January 26, 2011


Threading also favors latecomers over folks there for the thread as it happens; reading through a threaded comment structure that keeps growing in several different places at once is annoying in a way that's not so much of an issue for a thread that's already gone quiet and is hence static in structure and content.

Different strokes and all that; I certainly don't prefer that sort of comment layout but the fun thing about preferences is I can just let them dictate where I spend my time and call it good. Complaints by members of This Community about the mechanics or design elements of That Other Community are notably similar in form regardless of which community is This and which is That; redditors have on a number of occasions complained about the horrid colors here and the flat comment threads and the lack of display sorting tools, etc.
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:00 PM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


White is a horrid color for sure.
posted by fixedgear at 1:02 PM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


I've never read Reddit, but I've listened to As It Happens on CBC, and I'm always saying, "I read yesterday this on MetaFilter."
posted by ThatCanadianGirl at 1:07 PM on January 26, 2011 [2 favorites]


I've tried to make sense of reddit since people here keep saying that there's interesting stuff there if you dig but it just doesn't seem worth wading through all the garbage to find it.
posted by octothorpe at 1:08 PM on January 26, 2011


Although I keep hearing that wisely choosing subreddits is the way to go, I've seen enough "aw yeah I'd roll that ass in steak sauce VOTE ME UP!!" comments that I've probably been put off Reddit forever.

It's like getting a beetle in your fries every time you go to Burger King, and hearing "well, you have to get the onion rings instead, those are great." And you're like "hell no I'm never eating any kind of Burger King again" and two days later you hear that one of the onion rings has saved a puppy.
posted by Metroid Baby at 1:09 PM on January 26, 2011 [18 favorites]


If you're not reading /r/aww I feel for you.
posted by Pope Guilty at 1:20 PM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


Over the past year, I've become a more regular reader of Reddit than MetaFilter. On the other hand, on Reddit, I lurk. On MetaFilter, I'm more likely to participate.

My takeaway from reading both sites regularly is this:

1) I very frequently see interesting, FPP-worthy materials on Reddit the day before those same materials hit on MetaFilter. Reddit has been a better place to go for recent news and community action.

2) Reddit has a very high tolerance for humor, and MetaFilter increasingly has less and less tolerance for humor. On Reddit, there will frequently be jokes, puns, meme references and brief but thoughtful writings co-mingled and upvoted. That's the way MetaFilter used to be, but jokes, memes and puns have been diminished through moderation, and the MetaFilter experience now seems to be the occasional deeply thoughtful post or the occasional deeply funny piece of conceptual humor buried in lots and lots of snark-rar passive-aggressive enough that it doesn't get moderated. Currently, it feels like choosing between Reddit or MetaFilter is "too much humor" vs. "too little humor."

3) It's far easier to read a Reddit discussion thread than a MetaFilter thread these days, since the important or funny comments gravitate toward the top through upvoting. With linear 300+ comment strings and no filters other than scrolling to find posts with large number of favorites, it takes an unnecessarily long time to work one's way through the snark-rar chaff to the interesting/funny/useful posts here on MeFi. I'm not a big fan of threading, but it seems like a reasonable price to pay to be able to find those comments of interest.

(I love the sidebar as a similar mechanism for finding interesting posts here. Why can't MeFi increase the frequency of sidebar posts, or allow us to set it to automatically show us posts that get over x favorites? I know, I know, everyone has mixed feelings about favorites, blah blah blah.)

4) While Reddit often congratulates itself for upvoting materials that endorse treating minorities and women well or criticizing those who don't on the front page, it still seems very much targeted (or is targeting itself) towards the worldwide male geek. MetaFilter is generally far more accommodating of a wider audience, but unfortunately with a sort of strange intellectual, blue-state, NPR-listening snobbery that's completely non-existent on Reddit.

In short, MetaFilter has nuggets of greatness that far exceed the fruits of Reddit's more populist approach, but Reddit is consistently more entertaining, interesting and easy to read.
posted by I EAT TAPAS at 1:24 PM on January 26, 2011 [9 favorites]


I was a Digg user for years, but switched to Reddit after the former imploded due to an unbelievably inept redesign. I don't use it nearly as much, though -- I've only submitted one link, and comment far less often. It just seems harder to get in on the ground floor of a discussion. With Digg, there were site-wide "upcoming" queues in a dozen or so topics full of stories that were on their way to becoming popular, almost a sort of backstage area. The traffic in these areas was lower, and it was easy to drop in on and leave a joke or a rebuttal to some flawed argument or a relevant link. Then, once the story hit the front page, you got lots of feedback in the form of replies and votes, which made it easier to continue conversations.

But with Reddit, it's a lot harder to find this sweet spot -- there are a lot more subtopics, a lot of ways to sort their stories (top, hot, best, etc.), and so it feels like there's more polarization between stories that have died on the vine with just a handful of replies or ones with 3,000 comments that makes contribution feel futile.

On the bright side, the system feels more meritocratic and less susceptible to gaming, and it's a lot more conducive to casual browsing. Some of the subreddits are surprisingly amusing, and I'm even considering featuring some of the cleverer ones in a post here (like that great IAMA round-up from awhile back.)

The caustic attitude is a problem, though, just as it was on Digg. The casual misogyny and even racism in some corners is very off-putting. But it's balanced out to an extent by some of the genuinely good things that the community does -- not just stuff like the Rally to Restore Sanity, but helping out people in need, finding missing persons or lost objects, solving minor crimes, etc. It's a lot like MeFi in that respect, just higher volume and with a higher ratio of noise to signal.

cortex: "Different strokes and all that; I certainly don't prefer that sort of comment layout but the fun thing about preferences is I can just let them dictate where I spend my time and call it good."

Yeah, that Reddit Enhancement Suite makes the site a lot more bearable. And I wonder if it would be possible to do a "conversion mod" of Reddit's layout into Mefi -- flat comments, replies formatted with an auto-generated quote beforehand, votes converted to favorites, same byline style, same color/font, etc., sort of like what this parody site did with Reddit's content and Digg's layout. RES does almost as much on the fly, so it can't be impossible. I'm no programmer, though.

(Oh, and a question for long-time users: does Reddit observe that "do NOT talk about /b/" rule? One of the first comments I left there was a link to this as a reply to a popular and relevant comment (don't ask how), and it got downvoted a lot followed up by the helpful advice: "Just want you to know why you're getting downvoted; it's because you're a fucking moron." What was that about? Or is that image the 2011 equivalent of Fwd: FWD: re: HILARIOUS!!!!11?)
posted by Rhaomi at 1:28 PM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


with a sort of strange intellectual, blue-state, NPR-listening snobbery that's completely non-existent on Reddit.

Eh, I probably shouldn't say this, given the way Reddit is prone to the similar-but-different snobberies involving, say, Ron Paul and atheism.
posted by I EAT TAPAS at 1:30 PM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


(Here's that IAMA round-up, btw.)
posted by Rhaomi at 1:31 PM on January 26, 2011


Something like 99.9% of the links/topics (especially links going viral) I see on MetaFilter I see on reddit first, but to see those links it's like drinking from a fire hose. Granted, I spend too much time on reddit, but I don't use facebook or twitter.

I remember when linkblogs were really just starting to gather momentum. Slashdot, MetaFilter and others had been around for a while. Del.icio.us, digg and stumbleupon were still new. Reddit was just getting started.

There used to be a very definite structure and hierarchy about how these links would propagate between the various aggregators and linkblogs. The cycle was as long as a few days to a week. Now that cycle is measured in minutes, and it doesn't have a hierarchy that's nearly as well defined. Things are way more chaotic and dynamic.

As for commenting or reading comments on reddit - it's really hit or miss. I've read some really great stuff and I've read some really appallingly stupid shit. You have to learn to ignore the idiots. Though I'll admit it's not easy. I spend more time than I should yelling at idiots saying incredibly stupid shit, and I don't even do it that often.

But on the flip side of that, I talk to people I probably normally wouldn't, and that can be enlightening, valuable and educational.

And, yeah, it's all about the subreddits. If I hit reddit when I'm not logged in I get confused as to why I'm suddenly getting so pissed off. But when I log in, reddit is an entirely different place.
posted by loquacious at 1:32 PM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


That link just redirects back to the funnyjunk homepage for me, Rhaomi.
posted by Gator at 1:33 PM on January 26, 2011


Threading favors lurkers. If you're a lurker, you're not interested in peoples back-and-forth exchanges most of the time. However, if you're a contributor, threading is anathema because it means people are less likely to read your post.

I guess? But the little lurking I do on reddit still causes threading to annoy me; I lurk in plenty of mefi posts and I find the lack of threading makes it much easier for me to just read along; threading to me feels like [read this chunk] [totally unrelated bit of stuff] [more stuff unrelated to stuff that came before]. And the upvoting/downvoting of things, whereby things just seem to randomly appear or disappear, makes it even harder for me to follow along. I suppose if I spent more time there, I'd grok it soon enough, but so far I haven't felt the need to climb over the irritation to get there, so I just close the tab.

In long mefi threads with lots of back and forth between various people, I've found ctrl-f works just fine to gather the context and get caught up.
posted by rtha at 1:33 PM on January 26, 2011


I once posted something I found on Reddit.

The thread in the blue went 250 comments. And the ensuing MetaTalk spanking almost 500.

I'm proud of the post. But that's a ride I won't be taking again.
posted by Joe Beese at 1:44 PM on January 26, 2011


What's Reddit?
posted by Mister Fabulous at 1:47 PM on January 26, 2011


What's Mister Fabulous?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:49 PM on January 26, 2011


Gator: "That link just redirects back to the funnyjunk homepage for me, Rhaomi."

Weird -- it did the same for me when I clicked it just now, but copying and pasting it into a new tab works. I thought it might be a cache issue, but it works in a different browser, too, and force-reloading doesn't break it. At least that explains the vitriol (though it would have been nice if the dude had just pointed out what was wrong instead of being a dick about it).
posted by Rhaomi at 1:49 PM on January 26, 2011


Currently, it feels like choosing between Reddit or MetaFilter is "too much humor" vs. "too little humor."

Totally agreed. I do kind of like the "looser" atmosphere over at reddit. However, this does come with a cost -- the aforementioned juvenile behavior and sexism. (why do people keep saying misogyny when they mean sexism? okay, that's a different topic....)

Still, sometimes I feel like MeFi is full of people who haven't had their coffee yet or perhaps had too much coffee. (note that I am not excluding myself from this categorization)
posted by Afroblanco at 1:53 PM on January 26, 2011


why do people keep saying misogyny when they mean sexism?

They're separate but overlapping phenomena. Reddit has an awful lot of both.
posted by Zozo at 1:59 PM on January 26, 2011 [6 favorites]


I spent a few months trying to get into Reddit, but I was put off by the sexism (yes, even in the subreddits) as well as the quality of discussion. Years of Metafilter have ruined me; I now expect people to be articulate, witty, and considerate of their fellow human beings.
posted by honeydew at 2:07 PM on January 26, 2011


It would be terrible for either Metafilter or Reddit to try to be more like the other.

Reddit is Day on the Green while Metafilter is a dinner party.

Sometimes I'm in the mood for one and sometimes I'm in the mood for the other.
posted by vapidave at 2:11 PM on January 26, 2011


"why do people keep saying misogyny when they mean sexism?"

In my case, I really do mean misogyny. Sexism just makes me roll my eyes, whereas misogyny creeps me out and makes me to want to stop participating in a community that tolerates it. Reddit harbors enough misogynists that I don't want to post there anymore.

Too often I see hateful stuff that would be almost immediately deleted by a mod on MetaFilter instead receive tons of upvotes on Reddit. Meanwhile, calling out blatant misogyny on Reddit not only gets downvoted but frequently incites enraged personal attacks and comment-stalking from creeps. That's just not my idea of a fun way to spend my time or the type of people I want to develop connections with.
posted by Jacqueline at 2:25 PM on January 26, 2011 [8 favorites]


Reddit has a fuckton of sexism, misogyny and racism. I'm guessing that it's a product of the userbase leaning towards under 25 years old, white, male - and ridiculously sheltered and under-educated from growing up in some dumbass suburb.

The thing is they aren't the majority, they're a vocal minority. If the true majority of reddit took a little time to write or even copy/paste a "this is not ok, and here's why" message and use the downvote button, a lot of that juvenile crap will get filtered out and corrected.

But for people to do want to invest that kind of time in a community they generally want more accountability and moderation, and reddit by design doesn't have that.

But yeah, the "i'd hit it" and "why isn't she in the kitchen making me a sammich?" comments are really frustrating and nauseating, especially when they're voted to the top of the thread by the circlejerk brigades.
posted by loquacious at 2:26 PM on January 26, 2011 [3 favorites]


God, I guess I really don't spend a lot of time on Reddit. I pretty much only read IAMA, and although I've seen some sexist jokes there, I haven't really seen much misogyny.

Oddly, though, the people who post IAMAs and AMAs tend to have a good sense of humor and handle the idiots and trolls really well. I think that's one of the more interesting aspects of IAMA -- how well it functions in absence of active moderation.
posted by Afroblanco at 2:29 PM on January 26, 2011


(although, to be fair, I do think at least 50% of IAMA is made-up BS)
posted by Afroblanco at 2:33 PM on January 26, 2011


i like reddit, i read the comment threads - but i've learned to stay out of certain topics - like, anything about rape or drunk girls or really, women in general. the amount of comments (and the upvoting) of men rushing in to tell their story of that one guy that knew a girl that lied about her rape, as if that erases the 20 women he knows that absolutely were raped/molested...that's just the tip of the iceberg - but certainly makes me glad to have metafilter to retreat to.
posted by nadawi at 2:45 PM on January 26, 2011


2) Reddit has a very high tolerance for humor, and MetaFilter increasingly has less and less tolerance for humor. On Reddit, there will frequently be jokes, puns, meme references and brief but thoughtful writings co-mingled and upvoted. That's the way MetaFilter used to be, but jokes, memes and puns have been diminished through moderation, and the MetaFilter experience now seems to be the occasional deeply thoughtful post or the occasional deeply funny piece of conceptual humor buried in lots and lots of snark-rar passive-aggressive enough that it doesn't get moderated. Currently, it feels like choosing between Reddit or MetaFilter is "too much humor" vs. "too little humor."

Reddit usually makes me literally laugh out loud at least once a day. Metafilter rarely, rarely, rarely does any more.

Most of the stuff that makes me laugh at reddit would get deleted instantly here.
posted by empath at 3:19 PM on January 26, 2011 [4 favorites]


I like /r/adviceanimals. Cept now its full of some new one thats isn't even an animal.
posted by Ad hominem at 3:22 PM on January 26, 2011


That Foul Bachelor Frog, when will he ever learn?
posted by Ad hominem at 3:26 PM on January 26, 2011


Also, reddit allows and encourages self posts and lets the community voice their disapproval if it sucks.

Most of the best stuff on reddit are self posts (like f7u12)
posted by empath at 3:27 PM on January 26, 2011


4chan-->reddit-->metafilter

posted by arveale at 3:32 PM on January 26, 2011


Since this seems like the place, I just wanted to say:

I've read a few of those IAMA things, and I have to say they seem deeply infantile to me, and a very bad idea in general. The assumption one sort of has to make in reading IAMA is that all interesting and unique experiences can be adequately communicated through the medium of internet discussion boards. I like the sense of wonder, but it stops there for me. I'd much rather hear someone just talk about their experiences, rather than watching them answer pointless and inane queries from people who admittedly don't know what they're talking about.
posted by koeselitz at 3:38 PM on January 26, 2011


Most of the stuff that makes me laugh at reddit would get deleted instantly here.

That's because it's 75% single link images, and 25% in-thread pun chains.
posted by graventy at 4:15 PM on January 26, 2011 [2 favorites]


Those suggesting that humor is lost because the things they find funny at reddit would be deleted here should realize that different people have different senses of humor. I find things on Metafilter funny all the time but am glad the mods don't allow 50 post pun chains to proliferate here.
posted by proj at 5:22 PM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


Reddit usually makes me literally laugh out loud at least once a day. Metafilter rarely, rarely, rarely does any more.

That's funny, I generally come here to pull myself out of a glum mood because I always find a good laugh here.

This thread inspired me to go and take a look around Reddit because I've never been there before. I can honestly say I'll probably not go back. It was a quick look, less than an hour, but yeah, not impressed.
posted by patheral at 5:28 PM on January 26, 2011 [2 favorites]


On MeFi the humor is mostly humorous and clever. On Reddit, it's mostly inane. Not that both don't have both types from time to time.

Reddit usually makes me literally laugh out loud at least once a day. Metafilter rarely, rarely, rarely does any more.

The opposite. Not for lack of trying, Reddit, but you're like that guy at the party using the shotgun method of comedy. You don't have to make a joke in every thread to be considered funny; in fact, the sheer volume of trite, tedious, predictable ones make you unfunny.

I think though, that's a function of the much younger (on average) user base. Jokes aren't as worn out when you haven't been around very long.
posted by ctmf at 5:49 PM on January 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


This is the kind of thing that is mind boggling about reddit. It is C. S. Lee from Dexter trying to bring his buddy's IAMA post to the front page. WTF Masuka?
posted by Ad hominem at 6:05 PM on January 26, 2011


I love IAMA and Reddit also makes me laugh out loud daily, but it's a guilty pleasure. If forced to choose friends from just one pool it would be Metafilter, hands down. I would never go to a Reddit meetups, for example, whereas I'm psyched to be spending two months in a city large enough to justify setting one up for MeFi (none currently scheduled).

Sometimes I see Reddit user names that duplicate some in use here. However, I confess to deciding not to use "carmicha" over there, um, just because it's a sillier environment and I like being able to make obnoxious posts sometimes.
posted by carmicha at 6:15 PM on January 26, 2011


Oh and the ninja edit feature rocks.
posted by carmicha at 6:16 PM on January 26, 2011


My guess is that the difference is between those that use the internet to go outside and those that use the internet as a refuge from the outside.

Both are valid. Nothing to see here.
posted by vapidave at 6:21 PM on January 26, 2011


I actually first heard about MetaFilter on Reddit a few years ago; someone linked to the AskMe thread about "What is the introductory book for your profession or discipline" and it made the front page. When I started lurking here I stopped reading Reddit for a couple years, but recently I started going back. Since I was gone, they came up with the whole subreddit thing and a bunch of Reddit culture has developed out of that. It's been a big change, but in many ways Reddit is the same as ever.

I usually see interesting things on Reddit end up here a few days later. Sometimes I think about posting things here from there, but to me there is a lot more pressure involved in posting on the blue than to Reddit, not that that's a bad thing.

I don't think there has really been any decline in Reddit's quality; people have been saying that since I got there in 2006. There was more tolerance to long Vanity Fair or New Yorker articles there at the very beginning, but everything else that makes Reddit Reddit, like pun threads, funny images and injokes have been there since the beginning.

I'll say this: the first Reddit meetup I went to had the site founders and an open bar, but the first MetaFilter meetup I went to had better conversation.
posted by malapropist at 7:38 PM on January 26, 2011


> I find things on Metafilter funny all the time but am glad the mods don't allow 50 post pun chains to proliferate here.

You've heard of people who win the lottery and blow it all right away? There once was a metafilter that had the usual amount of what you describe but one day we scraped every bit of it together and blew it all at once on a single thread. Involving a chicken.
posted by jfuller at 8:07 PM on January 26, 2011


I love both sites.

As for subreddits, it is very correct that you need to dig a little more to get to the good stuff there. Instead of the default frontpage reddits, I set my profile to show most of the subreddits linked to by DepthHub (disclosure: I moderate one of the subreddits featured by DepthHub). Besides that, I like to read reddits that are relevant to my interests.

Reddit is essentially a huge collection of cliques, some bigger than others. When you find your niche, it's just as, if not more, rewarding to read than MeFi.
posted by reenum at 8:16 PM on January 26, 2011


great gif's, stupid comments
posted by growabrain at 11:09 PM on January 26, 2011


I browse reddit but never post there. However, in recent days it has gone downhill in a major, major way. Macros, DAE posts, many many posts about high-school-age sex concerns, and OMGWTFBBQ political links. They are also obsessed with people who mention that they have girlfriends.

I've found the best Reddit experience can be had by turning off the politics subreddit, as well as the main "reddit.com" reddit. If you just subscribe to science, programming, technology, whatever niches you're into it's much better.
posted by floam at 1:33 AM on January 27, 2011


Er, Rhomboid beat me.
posted by floam at 1:33 AM on January 27, 2011


I spend more time on reddit these days. There's so much variety and freedom of expression there that I'm endlessly fascinated. There is of course horrific misogyny and racism and "antifatism" and sophomoric jokes but the trade-off is well worth it.

There are now at least a couple of links a day on MeFi that I've already seen on reddit, but I don't see any harm in that. The biggest difference in the way I look at MeFi now is that I see the downsides of the moderation/cultivation much more -- the monoculture, the humorlessness, the Seriousness, the being sensitive instead of being honest, etc.
posted by callmejay at 6:31 AM on January 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


You know why I don't like Reddit? The name. Reddit? God DAMN that name annoys me.
posted by dirtdirt at 8:27 AM on January 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


I see the downsides of the moderation/cultivation much more -- the monoculture, the humorlessness, the Seriousness, the being sensitive instead of being honest, etc.

Well, here's me being honest: It's fine that you feel fine about wading through shitty behavior in order to find stuff you think is cool, and that reddit is somewhere you can do that. I'm happy that on mefi I don't have to be hip-deep in trolls and assholes in order to read interesting stuff. It's entirely possible to be "honest" and "sensitive" simultaneously - being honest does not mean (for instance) that you are required to call someone a retard because you disagree with them or think the link they posted is stupid. That's just juvenile.

As for monoculture, I don't know what you mean. Truly. The fpps just from this morning make me wonder what you're talking about.
posted by rtha at 8:29 AM on January 27, 2011 [3 favorites]


Perhaps that came off more negatively than I meant it -- I still love metafilter and the level of conversation here is undoubtedly higher. I'm certainly not suggesting that my preferences should be everybody's preferences, either. I am saying that there is a tradeoff that happens when moderators delete comments and shape and direct the conversation.

The real world is full of sexists and racists and homophobes and while it's nice to have a place to have conversations where everybody is on mostly the same page regarding those things, it's also nice to have a place where people are free to say whatever the fuck they want to say. Note that reddit is threaded, so you don't have the trainwreck problem -- the "train" simply forks and you can follow either tine or both. It's actually not hard to "wade" through a threaded conversation that way.

As for honesty vs. sensitivity, I think there is a tradeoff. Some people can be honest and sensitive, but a lot of people are not honestly sensitive. Maybe you prefer to avoid those people, and that's your prerogative, but I find discussions more interesting and more real when all people, sensitive and not, are included. Not that there aren't downsides, of course -- you hate to see the "Jump!" comments directed at suicidal posters, but again, it's a tradeoff.

Also, as empath pointed out, a lot of very funny comments that you see on reddit would be instantly deleted here. You write that being honest does not mean that you are required to call someone a retard, and I never, ever use that word myself, but people's creative ad hominems can be not only hilarious, but more effective in some circumstances than a carefully reasoned, impersonal response. People are not homo rationalus, after all.

As for monoculture, I don't know what you mean.

I mean the enormous slant towards liberal/hipster/nerd. I mean, I'm a nerd and a liberal and I have nothing against hipsters, but it's a narrow slice of humanity. On reddit you have whole subreddits for libertarians and Christians and "Mens' Rights" and potheads and unhip geeks and gun aficionados and the list goes on. Just a wider sample of humanity.
posted by callmejay at 9:55 AM on January 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


i, for one, am glad we don't have a subsection for "men's rights" here. that subreddit pollutes the front page if gender is the topic.

also - haven't we had multiple metatalks about why metafilter hates hipsters? are we all self hating hipsters? i promise you, no one calls me hip.
posted by nadawi at 10:58 AM on January 27, 2011


What is Hip?
posted by Apoch at 11:27 AM on January 27, 2011


you hate to see the "Jump!" comments directed at suicidal posters, but again, it's a tradeoff.

Yeah, that's a tradeoff I'd be unwilling to make, which is one of the reasons I don't hang around places where those tradeoffs are acceptable. And I don't need reminding that there are people out there who hate me or think I'm gross or think I don't deserve the rights they have (and are happy to tell me so) because I'm a dyke (for instance), so I also don't feel the need to hang around places where that happens.

Just a wider sample of humanity.

That's a good thing, I think we both agree. I just think that that particular wider sample doesn't need to be replicated on metafilter.
posted by rtha at 11:56 AM on January 27, 2011 [2 favorites]


I'm a registered user at both places, and occasionally comment at both places, but I never post links there or to the blue here (I have made a few AskMes though).

At least here I know the mods will take care of the really ridiculous/offensive comments and threads. For the most part, reddit is unmoderated (not completely, but much farther that way on the spectrum than here).
posted by asciident at 3:27 PM on January 27, 2011


It's easier to trade off insults and misogyny and racism and homophobia when they're not directed at you. You're not hurt by that kind of talk? Well isn't that nice, for you.

Some of us like being on websites where we're not the target of ignorance and hatred, and can actually talk about Muppets or sci-fi or music or whatever is interesting that day without being harassed by morons. Or if it does get too bigoted, someone will say "cut that shit out, we're trying to have fun here".

Discussions aren't more 'real' when arseholes are allowed to shout all over the top of them. They're just stupider.
posted by harriet vane at 9:13 PM on January 27, 2011 [3 favorites]


Reddit has still has science/math/tech/engineering types underneath the sea of inane/teenage/young-adult posts, and so I really do enjoy the gems and discussions that take place there. In contrast, Metafilter seems to have more of a liberal arts bent; it is much rarer to see technical/academic/pseudoacademic discussions happen here.
posted by polymodus at 7:40 AM on January 28, 2011


In contrast, Metafilter seems to have more of a liberal arts bent; it is much rarer to see technical/academic/pseudoacademic discussions happen here.

It's not that we don't know tech, it's that we also know other things.
posted by zippy at 8:56 PM on January 29, 2011


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