Prominent Subreddit Moderators Rally for Affordable Third-Party App Choices: Open Letter Urges Reddit to Support Affordable Alternatives
Moderators of several prominent Reddit communities have collectively written open letters urging the platform to address concerns regarding the affordability of third-party apps and various other issues. The letters, signed by moderators from subreddits such as r/pics, r/MildlyInteresting, r/GIFs, and more, highlight the need for accessible options for third-party app developers. These appeals come in response to the revised API pricing introduced by Reddit, which posed challenges to the functionality of third-party Reddit apps. As a form of protest, numerous subreddits temporarily went private.
The open letters predominantly focus on requesting Reddit to lower costs for third-party app developers, enhance moderation tools, and commit to reducing spam and inappropriate content. Furthermore, the moderators request that Reddit provide advanced notice of any major changes affecting moderators, contributors, and stakeholders, allowing ample time for preparation. Additionally, the letters propose the creation of a senior-level role, “Moderator Advocate,” filled by someone with extensive experience as a volunteer Reddit moderator.
The situation escalated when several third-party app developers, including Christian Selig, the creator of the popular Apollo app for Reddit, announced the shutdown of their apps. Selig estimated that the revised pricing structure would require Apollo to spend over $20 million annually to sustain its operations. The well-known Reddit Is Fun app, also known as “RIF,” also announced its impending closure. In solidarity with the developers, thousands of subreddits went private as a form of protest.
However, the protest was short-lived as many subreddits resumed public access. It was reported that Reddit threatened to remove moderators who continued the protest, leading to their return. Nevertheless, upon resuming their activities, many subreddits incorporated playful and satirical twists to express their discontent.
Overall, the open letters from Reddit moderators and the subsequent events shed light on the ongoing concerns surrounding the affordability and accessibility of third-party apps, as well as the relationship between Reddit and its dedicated moderators.
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