Reddit, the “front page of the internet”, is increasingly being used by journalists to research stories and engage users. Here’s what you need to know.
What is Reddit?
- Social news aggregator that collects related items of content and displays them or links to them
- Discussion forum
- Self-regulating marketplace of ideas
How does it work?
Reddit consists of a bunch of “subreddits,” or topic sections. Each post starts and lives on a specific subreddit with the most popular bubbling up to the front page.
Every post, and every comment on every post, can be upvoted or downvoted by each user. Votes are how the community determines the best content, which rises to the top.
How can journalists use Reddit?
- To find story ideas
- To follow live coverage of breaking news events
- To gauge popular interest and opinion
- To engage users
- To identify niche sources
Why is Reddit important in journalism?
With a vast amount of information, journalists can easily browse Reddit to stay ahead of the crowd. You can start your own subreddit and become a moderator. Or, you can subscribe to a local subreddit, like /r/ithaca.
Reddit’s live updating feature also helps journalists sort out information and provides forums for social journalism. More and more, journalists and newsrooms are using Reddit to boost traffic to their sites and get feedback from their audience.
Reddit and journalistic responsibilities
Not everything on Reddit is journalism. But that’s OK. Reddit is a social news site, but its definition of “news” is much broader than what most journalists are used to. For this reason, journalists must make sure to verify and fact-check all information.
Reddit offers a lot of value for journalists. But, you just have to find the parts that are right for you.