Reddit to crack down on objectionable content

Anything no longer goes as site attempts to restore calm after rocky weeks

Reddit screen

Reddit screen

Reddit, the self-appointed "front page of the Internet" and one of the Web's most popular sites, is planning to crack down on objectionable content -- at least in public areas of the site.

The new policies, which don't appear to be set in stone quite yet, come in response to a rocky couple of weeks for the famously free-wheeling website that were sparked by the dismissal of a staffer. That caused long simmering dissatisfaction by the site's moderators over Reddit's management to boil over and culminated in the resignation of CEO Ellen Pao last week.

Writing in Thursday's Washington Post, Pao called the response to decisions she had made at Reddit "one of the largest trolling attacks in history." In the wake of bans on revenge porn and harassment of individuals, Pao said she and colleagues were "targeted with harassing messages, attempts to post my private information online and death threats."

While Reddit's board accepted her resignation, it appears the treatment of Pao prompted co-founder Steve Huffman, who took over as CEO, to decide the site needs a few ground rules.

On Thursday afternoon, writing on Reddit, he said the site is considering new restrictions on what people can say in the public parts of Reddit.

Those restrictions are set to include spam; anything that is illegal (although he clarified discussion of something illegal would not be banned); publication of a person's private and confidential information; anything that incites harm or violence against an individual or group of people; anything that harasses, bullies, or abuses an individual or group of people; and sexually suggestive content featuring minors.

"We've spent the last few days here discussing and agree that an approach like this allows us as a company to repudiate content we don't want to associate with the business, but gives individuals freedom to consume it if they choose," said Huffman. "This is what we will try, and if the hateful users continue to spill out into mainstream reddit, we will try more aggressive approaches."

Martyn Williams covers mobile telecoms, Silicon Valley and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Martyn on Twitter at @martyn_williams. Martyn's e-mail address is martyn_williams@idg.com

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Internet-based applications and servicesredditSteve Huffmansocial mediainternetEllen Pao

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Martyn Williams

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?