The gorilla in the room for social media companies is content moderation, and the gorilla is rampaging.
The latest example of the fury is obviously the Reddit/GameStop saga. A recent article in the WSJ highlightsthe relatively unique approach that Reddit takes to content moderation among social media companies.
Unlike most other social media companies, Reddit depends on its users to rate all content on the platform and monitor the speech on its message boards. Most others rely mainly on algorithms and paid moderators.
Lots of new users on Reddit now
Millions of new users have joined Reddit recently, according to Steve Huffman, Reddit’s CEO. That’s a result of the GameStop trading frenzy which has shown us all the power of such online communities.
- “This whole event is showing the power of large communities of everyday people,” said Huffman. “Not just massive institutional and professional investors get to participate in the stock market.”
Reddit reported 52 million daily average users back in October 2020 which is the most recently available data. WallStreetBets members alone more than quadrupled to 8.7 million subscribers this year, so that 52 million number is probably a lot higher now.
It’s not surprising to see Huffman back his own; not to view this too mercenarily, but along with those growing user numbers, Reddit’s advertising revenue will also likely increase substantially. It’s all about the eyeballs.