Reddit bans controversial The_Donald forum as it reviews hate speech policies
Reddit banned the controversial The_Donald forum on Monday as it makes sweeping changes to its hate speech policies. The subreddit became a forum for supporters of Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential election campaign, but quickly became known for hosting racist, misogynistic, anti-Semitic, and other issues.
“All communities on Reddit are expected to adhere to our Good Faith Content Policy,” said CEO Steve Huffman. in a Reddit post announcing the changes. “We banned r / The_Donald because he didn’t, despite every opportunity.”
Huffman has– ban threads from appearing on the Reddit homepage in 2016, then finally quarantine the subreddit in July 2019. Quarantine meant the subreddit would not appear in search results and only users with a verified email could click to sign up and view it. In February 2020, Reddit banned a group of moderators from the subreddit and the community was placed in restricted mode, making it read-only.
But Huffman was questioned by his predecessor Ellen Pao earlier this month for failing to take stronger, quicker action against the subreddit.
Huffman later admitted he regretted the way he handled the subreddit. “I’m afraid we’re letting being technically correct stop us from doing the right thing,” Huffman said earlier this month, speaking specifically of the_Donald. “Obviously we should have quarantined him sooner.”
On Monday, as he announced changes to Reddit’s content policy, he said the subreddit would finally shut down completely. “The community has consistently hosted and voted more rule-breaking content than average (Rule 1), upset us and other communities (Rules 2 and 8), and its mods have refused to meet our most basic expectations. “, did he declare. “So far, we’ve worked in good faith to help them preserve the community as a space for its users – through warnings, mod changes, quarantine and more.”
The movement comes as Tic announced a , citing “hateful conduct”. The suspension was imposed due to a replay of a 2016 campaign rally as well as its recent rally in Tulsa, according to the streaming platform.
Since its inception, Reddit has always kept its minimum rules. Even now his updated content policy includes just eight rules in total, followed by a list of actions the company will take against individuals and communities who break them. The ultimate punishment for repeat offenders is the ban on entire subreddits – and The_Donald is far from the only victim. Reddit also banned 2,000 other communities from all political backgrounds on Monday, most of which were inactive.
ChapoTrapHouse, a very active community for fans of the popular left-wing podcast, was one of the banned subtitles. Like the_Donald, he had been quarantined.
Reddit has always valued free speech, but has gradually become more stringent on controlling hate speech over the years. Banning so many subreddits is the most dramatic step the company has taken yet to tackle problematic content.
Huffman said in a Reddit post earlier this month, in which he first promised changes to content policy, that he wanted to bridge the gap between the company’s outward-looking policies and its internal values. In addition to changes to company policies, Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian resigned from the board earlier this month to make way for a black person to take his place. Reddit to the board shortly thereafter.
Huffman admitted Monday that the company had previously “failed” when it came to supporting community moderators on Reddit, and pledged to do better in the future. “We are committed to working with you to tackle the bad actors, abusive behavior and toxic communities that undermine our mission and hamper the creativity, discussion and communities that bring us all to Reddit in the first place,” he said. -he declares. mentionned.